Does anyone know of a good software package for processing full-waveform lidar? Also, does anyone know of a good tutorial on processing full-waveform lidar?

5 Answers 5


FullAnalyze is open source waveform software. http://fullanalyze.sourceforge.net/

SPD is a waveform file format with open source processing software. http://www.spdlib.org/doku.php


A good place to read and ask detailed questions about real full waveform LiDAR (-; is the discussion forum around the PulseWaves format. Many folks have only a vague understanding of what full waveform LiDAR exactly is and often talk about its derivatives (e.g. extra returns, echo width values, ...) rather than the actual full waveform data. Join http://pulsewaves.org for more details. You also find some software there ....


If you already have the data from a waveform system the best software would be from the vendor of the lidar system.

If it is already processed but you want to do additional analysis - a very popular program for that is MATLAB.

The best information available is really found doing a websearch of white papers and conference presentations.

  • 1
    Thank you for that information. I've done some reading regarding additional processing and noticed MATLAB quite a bit. Is there a particular extension/add-on you would suggest? The only one I have seen noted very much is Tiffs.
    – jwx
    Sep 19, 2012 at 17:36

what is the format of your waveform lidar data? I have worked with it in ENVI format, which can be converted to matlab array form using freadenvi()


  • Sorry for the terribly late reply. The file format seems to be .lwv format but is stored in WFD files. I am not 100% sure what that means.
    – jwx
    Apr 4, 2013 at 2:00

Depends on what you want to get from your data. You may check this out. http://forsys.cfr.washington.edu/fusion/fusionlatest.html

  • 4
    Can you try to explain why that link, and when it may or may not be applicable to the situation in the question?
    – BradHards
    Apr 1, 2013 at 20:13

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