Low-Cost Coastal Mapping Using Kinect v2 Time-of-Flight Cameras


High-resolution elevation and bathymetry data for coastal zones is extremely valuable to many researchers, however the cost of acquiring such data is prohibitively expensive for most research budgets, as it relies on specialized hardware. Mass produced off-the-shelf consumer cameras and sensors are becoming increasingly powerful, and can be affordable alternatives for collecting data. Microsoft’s original Kinect sensor was repurposed to collect data for Earth sciences research, but its low depth resolution hindered its usefulness for creating accurate maps. In this paper, we evaluate Microsoft’s next generation Kinect for Windows v2 sensor, which employs time-of-flight technology. Based on our results, the new sensor has great potential for use in coastal mapping and other Earth science applications where budget constraints preclude the use of traditional remote sensing data acquisition technologies.

Publication Date


Journal or Conference Title

MTS/IEEE OCEANS '14 St. John's.

Conference Date

September 14-19, 2014

Publisher Place

St John's, NL, Canada



Digital Object Identifier (DOI)


Document Type

Conference Proceeding