Department of Land Surveying and Geo-Informatics

Doctor of Philosophy / Master of Philosophy

Sept 2018 Entry


Established in 1984, the Department of Land Surveying and Geo-Informatics (LSGI) is the only academic unit amongst the local tertiary institutions offering a range of opportunities for education, training and research in the fields of Land Surveying and Geo-Informatics. We focus on the acquisition, modelling, analysis and management of spatially referenced data for a wide range of applications. These include map-making, navigation, monitoring of engineering projects and geological hazards, environmental monitoring, boundary determination and geographic information management. The Department has close links with both international and local academic institutions and the professions. By maintaining links with the local professional community through our community service and consultancy activities, our courses and research are oriented towards the needs of Hong Kong.


The Department has identified Urban Informatics for a Smart City as its strategic area, with three corresponding focused research directions: a) spatial big data modelling and analytics; b) smart positioning and smart mobility; and c) urban sensing and measurement. The Department is home to 18 full-time academic staff members at the rank of Research Assistant Professor and above. As a regional centre of excellence in geomatics research, LSGI is comparable with international reputed academic units in the discipline, as evidenced by both the quantity and quality of the research produced and research grants received.


The Department has a Research Centre for Geo-Information Science and Technology (RCGIST) that carries out research in a number of focused areas. Research students from both Hong Kong and abroad are admitted at the Master’s and Doctoral levels. Currently, we have 59 research students, including 4 Hong Kong PhD Fellowship recipients. Various scholarships are available to outstanding applicants.

Research Areas

Digital Cartography

Automated map generalisation; cartographic visualisation; design of dynamic maps for vehicle navigation; multi-media presentation; multi- scale cartographic databases; and symbol design for tourist maps.


Geodesy and Geodynamics

Dynamic interaction between the solid earth, oceans, and atmosphere; El Nino; InSAR (Interferometric Synthetic Aperture Radar) for monitoring earth surface deformations; precise determination of the geoid; space geodesy; sea-level changes and impact assessment;  applications of space geodetic techniques to study crustal deformations, atmospheric and environmental changes and the related  natural  hazards.


Geographic Information Systems

Applications of GIS in transportation, environment and facility management; spatial data structures, terrain modelling and computational geometry; data exchange and integration; dynamic marine GIS; multi-dimensional data models; scale theory; spatial databases; spatial data quality; spatio-temporal modelling; spatial decision support systems; and internet GIS.


Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing

Applications of aerial and terrestrial photogrammetry and laser scanning; environmental applications of remote sensing; remote sensing of the urban thermal environment; remote sensing of air quality; two- and three-dimensional information extraction from high-resolution digital images.

Photogrammetry and Laser Scanning


Remote Sensing


Surveying, Navigation and Positioning

GNSS data error analysis, quality control, and navigation reliability monitoring under complex GNSS signal conditions


  • 3D modelling and correction of lower atmosphere (troposphere) and upper atmosphere (ionosphere) errors for GNSS and other space- based geodetic observations (e.g. InSAR)
  • Automation and enhancement of the cadastral systems of Hong Kong
  • Development of innovative GPS/GNSS positioning techniques, algorithms and technologies for high precision, high reliability GNSS positioning and navigation
  • Evaluation of the impact of space weather, ionosphere and troposphere events on high reliability GNSS positioning and navigation applications such as aircraft navigation
  • Global space weather and ionosphere scintillation observation, monitoring, and modelling using GNSS, Radar, digisonde and other in- situ techniques
  • GNSS reflectometry
  • Hydrographic surveying and mapping using multibeam echosounder, GNSS and other sensors
  • Intelligent transport information systems and fleet management
  • Location-based computing and services
  • Multiple sensor integration and indoor positioning systems
  • Oceanic environment (e.g. water vapour, temperature, colour, etc) observation and monitoring using satellite and in-situ hydrographic surveying methods
  • Reliable navigation in high-rise urban areas using multi-sensor and map matching techniques
  • Terrestrial and Oceanic water vapour monitoring and modelling using GNSS, remote sensing, and other in-situ observations
  • Urban deformation, landslide and structure health monitoring using multi-sensor technologies

Research Facilities

Laboratory for Smart City and Spatial Data Analytics


The Laboratory aims to bring academics, researchers, professionals and students together to generate innovative ideas, advanced technologies and practical solutions for smart cities. It provides one-stop facilities for research and development, including a spatial big data analytics server, spatial 3D data server, video-conferencing, TV wall, virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) visualisation systems.


Survey Store and Instrumentation Laboratory


The lab loans equipment and maintains and produces special accessories to support teaching and research activities in the Department.


Digital Cartography Laboratory


This lab is equipped with 40 sets of computers and digitising tablets. Installed with various GIS, CAD and database software, the laboratory is used mostly for teaching and students’ practical work in GIS, cartography and digital mapping.


Underground Utility Survey Laboratory


This lab provides an indoor and controllable environment in which the orientations, depths, sizes, material types and coordinates of various utility networks are carefully designed and recorded. All of these attributes are geo-referenced and integrated into a geographic information system. Surveys are conducted by a range of utility survey and near-surface geophysical equipment.


Geomatics Computing Laboratory


This lab provides a general computing facility for all teaching staff and students in the Department to achieve a number of teaching and learning objectives.


Laboratory for Geographic Information Systems


This lab supports teaching and research on geographic information science and systems; spatial data capture, process, query and analysis; and geo-visualisation.


Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing Laboratory


This lab houses a 30-seat computing space and a laser scanning and specialist equipment space. The computers are connected to the departmental domain and provide access to ERDAS Imagine 2015, Agisoft PhotoScan, PhotoModeler 2015 and Leica Cyclone. The specialist equipment includes an Intergraph ImageStation DPW, an Intergraph PhotoScan TD, a dual screen Leica LPS DPW and a Peiss P3 analytical stereo plotter. The lab also provides workspace for laser scanning projects.


Cadastre Survey Laboratory


This lab holds various district demarcation sheets, survey sheets and land records from the 1960s up to the present. The Cadastre lab has an A2 scanner and a 3D aerial photo-viewing device.


Hydrographic Survey Laboratory


The hydro lab has evolved into a modern laboratory to meet various university teaching, research and consulting requirements. It has a suite of advanced instruments and software for teaching, research and consulting services.


Navigation Laboratory


Jointly set up by the Department and Nanjing University of Aeronautics and Astronautics (NUAA), the laboratory supports four main areas of research: integrated navigation systems; GNSS and positioning; and intelligent transportation systems (ITS) and location based services (LBS).

Other Information

No information is available at present.

Supporting Documents

Transcript / Certificate