A 3D laser scanner is a device that, by taking up to one million measurements per second, presents objects as a set of points with spatial coordinates. The resulting data set, called a point cloud, can then be presented in 3D and 2D form and used for measurements, calculations, analysis and simulations.
3D Laser Scanning Technology History
The development of geodetic technology has led to the emergence of 3D laser scanning technology. Today it is one of the most modern and productive methods of measurement.
Ground laser scanning is a non-contact technology of measuring 3D surfaces using special devices called laser scanners. In comparison with traditional optical and satellite geodetic methods, it is characterized by high detail, speed, and accuracy of measurements. 3D laser scanning is used in architecture, industry, road infrastructure construction, geodesy, and surveying, archaeology.
Laser Scanning Characteristics
Although the first scanning systems appeared relatively recently, laser scanning technology has shown to be highly effective and is actively replacing less productive measurement methods.
Advantages of ground laser scanning:
- high data detail and high accuracy;
- unrivaled scanning speed (50,000 to 1,000,000 measurements per second);
- reflection-free technology of measurements is irreplaceable when performing laser scanning of hard-to-reach objects and objects where human presence is undesirable (impossible);
- high degree of automation that practically excludes the influence of subjective factors on the result of laser scanning;
- compatibility of the obtained data with the formats of 2D and 3D design software from the world's leading manufacturers (Autodesk, Bentley, AVEVA, Intergraph, etc.);
- initial "three-dimensionality" of the received data.
3D Laser Scanning Application
3D laser scanning is used as a method of surveying for reconstruction. The speed of the method makes it possible to obtain an accurate and up-to-date 3D production model "as is" or "as built" extremely quickly. The availability of such data makes it possible to design a reconstruction or monitor the progress of construction at a different quality level.
Laser scanning in architecture is used for surveying facades, interiors of buildings. Data performed using laser scanning contains facades, plans, sections, details, templates, while the reliability of this information due to high automation is much higher than when using traditional geodetic means. Laser scanning of architectural monuments, survey of buildings for installation of curtain wall facades are in the highest demand. Recently, with the growing popularity of 3D laser scanning, it is used to design reconstruction and control the construction of buildings and structures.
The efficiency of laser scanning in moving objects is determined by the possibility of surveying linear objects without stopping the traffic. 3D scanning of tunnels, bridges, roads is usually performed to create topographic plans, profiles, cross-sections for designing repair, reconstruction, to fill an automated electronic data bank with objective spatial data on the actual condition of transport facilities.
Ground-Based Laser Scanning
Ground-based laser scanning is used for large scale topographic plans surveying. Laser scanning of open pits, mines, drifts, tunnels is the most effective method. The speed of the method enables to promptly obtain data on the progress of excavation works, calculate the volume of excavated rock, perform geodetic control of construction progress, monitor the stability of the quarry sides, monitor landslide processes.
Laser scanning in archeology is used for the fixation of excavations, archeological finds. Surveying speed is important in conservation archaeology. Highly detailed point cloud allows to later create an accurate and realistic 3D model of the archaeological monument, to use this model in an interactive application for museification or to provide virtual access to the object of the scientific community.
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