This paper describes the method and process of developing a forest echo signal simulator to be applied in “iLOVE” : Issjem
LiDAR Observation of Vegetation Environment. The goal of this study was to develop an echo signal simulation
model and to visualize the generation process of echo signals.
The simulator consists of four components: 1) terrain and features, 2) sensor configuration, 3) echo signal generation and
4) visualization. Terrain and feature data were defined to be full polygon object in 3D space. A laser beam refers to
numerous sub laser beams, with each sub laser beam featuring specific intensity based on TEM00. The time-series
intensity change of sub laser beams was based on Gaussian distribution.
At the start of the echo signal generating process, intersections between sub laser beams and target objects were
calculated. Then, echo signal of sub laser beams was calculated from the position of intersections, pulse width and
specific reflectance of target objects. Finally, an echo signal suitable for footprint size was calculated by synthesizing
echo signals of sub laser beams. Meanwhile, intersections were drawn in 3D on the surface of target objects.
The results indicated that the simulator was highly useful for understanding the relationship between the echo signal and
the structure of target objects, and also for developing algorism for forest applications.