22 Jul 2020

How to download LiDAR data free

In my last few tutorials I have explained about what LiDAR data is and how to analyse it but how to download free LiDAR data online?

In this tutorial I will show you how to download Point Cloud data from USGS National Map.

Before starting this post let me clear you that LiDAR data is also known as Point Cloud data with different name. In this post some time I have written it as LiDAR and some time I have written it a Point Cloud data.

Step1: Visit National Map Site

Visit USGS national map site (https://viewer.nationalmap.gov/basic/

Step2: Select Area of Interest

Search for any location or draw polygon or provide coordinates etc.

For this tutorial I will provide below coordinates

Min Lat: 43.30099010129026
Min Lon: -88.85407447814943
Max Lat: 43.306661588070774
Max Lon: -88.84051322937013

Then click on Draw AOI button.

Step3: Select Map Layer

Now select USGS Imagery Topo from layer (Top right of map). This selection you are making to better observation.

Step4: Select LiDAR data type

Then under data tab (left side) select
Elevation Source Data (3DEP) - Lidar, IfSAR then select
Lidar Point Cloud (LPC)
Then click on Show Availability
If map colour goes green that means LiDAR is available for that area.

Step5: Search for LiDAR data Product

Now click on Find products

Step6: Choosing best LiDAR data to download

Now in Products tab list of LiDAR data products will be available. By clicking footprint of each product an AOI will be drawn in map.
By looking that AOI you can identify and select which product you need to download.

Step7: Download LiDAR data

After selecting best LiDAR data, click on any format you want to download (LAS or LAZ)
That’s all.


In this post I have explained how to download LiDAR data from USGS National Map. Though there are various sources to download LiDAR data free but I found National Map of USGS simple and straight forward.

Listing some other sources to download sample LiDAR data

Huge list of LiDAR dataset

Download Autzen dataset

Autzen is a popular LiDAR data. You can download Autzen LiDAR dataset by clicking below link.

If you have any question or suggestion regarding this topic see you in comment section. I will try my best to answer.