Laser sensors profile of debris flow flume for USGS

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The USGS Volcano Hazards Program studies debris flow and landslides at their facility in Washington state. They chose several Acuity laser displacement sensors to profile the height profile of material as it passed beneath archways in their test flume. The distance sensors take over 9000 distance readings per second and provide important metrics for the scientific studies. The extreme "texture" of the debris flow created situations of occlusion whereby the detector in the triangulation could not "see" the reflection of the laser spot because the geometry of the debris occluded its view.  This was minimized by orienting the laser sensor 90° to the direction of flow. More videos can be found at  The USGS Volcano Hazards Project Website

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