Laboratory and airborne experiments have proven the feasibility and demonstrated the techniques of an airborne pulsed laser system for rapidly mapping coastal water bathymetry. Water depths of 10 +/- 0.25 m were recorded in waters having an effective attenuation coefficient of 0.175 m(-1). A2-MW peak power Nd:YAG pulsed laser was flown at an altitude of 600 m. An advanced system, incorporating a mirror scanner, a high pulsed rate laser, and a good signal processor, could survey coastal zones at the rate of several square miles per hour.
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