Mobile laser scan data for road surface damage detection

B. B. Van Der Horst, R. C. Lindenbergh, S. W.J. Puister*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review

11 Citations (Scopus)
170 Downloads (Pure)


Road surface anomalies affect driving conditions, such as driving comfort and safety. Examples for such anomalies are potholes, cracks and ravelling. Automatic detection and localisation of these anomalies can be used for targeted road maintenance. Currently road damage is detected by road inspectors who drive slowly on the road to look out for surface anomalies, which can be dangerous. For improving the safety road inspectors can evaluate road images. However, results may be different as this evaluation is subjective. In this research a method is created for detecting road damage by using mobile profile laser scan data. First features are created, based on a sliding window. Then K-means clustering is used to create training data for a Random Forest algorithm. Finally, mathematical morphological operations are used to clean the data and connect the damage points. The result is an objective and detailed damage classification. The method is tested on a 120 meters long road data set that includes different types of damage. Validation is done by comparing the results to a classification of a human road inspector. However, the damage classification of the proposed method contains more details which makes validation difficult. Nevertheless does this method result in 79% overlap with the validation data. Although the results are already promising, developments such as pre-processing the data could lead to improvements.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1141-1148
Number of pages8
JournalInternational Archives of the Photogrammetry, Remote Sensing and Spatial Information Sciences - ISPRS Archives
Issue number2/W13
Publication statusPublished - 2019
Event4th ISPRS Geospatial Week 2019 - Enschede, Netherlands
Duration: 10 Jun 201914 Jun 2019


  • Damage Detection
  • Infrastructure Monitoring
  • Mobile Laser Scanning
  • Potholes
  • Road Pavement


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