Bridging the Gap between Aerial Imaging and Terrestrial Data Capture

The Challenges of Drone Use in Facade Mapping
There have been rapid advancements in unmanned aerial systems over recent years, yet there is widespread consensus that we have still only seen a fraction of how unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs or ‘drones’) could ultimately improve efficiency for geospatial professionals and their customers. To get a glimpse of the future, 'GIM International' spoke to Mark Nicolai, co-founder of industry start-up Aeroscan. Here, he shares his vision of how drones could form the missing link between aerial imaging and terrestrial data capture. According to independent research by the likes of PwC and Goldman Sachs, the construction industry tops the list in... (read more)
2019-03-20 10:24:53

Chasing BIM: How Surveyors Can Shape the Future

Greater Utilisation of Technologies at Hand
While research shows that many organizations recognise the power of building information modelling (BIM) for streamlining construction and infrastructure projects in a seamless online environment, survey and geospatial professionals can do more to deliver value in the 3D environment. There have been countless presentations and papers on the definition of BIM. This article makes an attempt to provide some practical insights on how surveyors can leverage the BIM revolution to benefit their businesses. The good news: there is a general consensus among geospatial thought leaders that the design and construction industry has reached a tipping point. The more that surveyors... (read more)
2018-10-04 09:20:39

Digitizing Reality: Automated 3D Point Cloud Data Processing Using AI

Intelligent Point Clouds
Instruments for digitizing the 3D real environment are becoming smaller, more lightweight, lower-cost and more robust. Accordingly, they are finding increasingly widespread usage, not only on surveying tripods for the highest accuracy, but also on mobile platforms such as autonomous vehicles, drones, helicopters, aircraft, robotic vacuum cleaners, trains, mobile phones, satellites and Martian rovers. Lidar uses laser scanning, while photogrammetry records images from one or more cameras which may be moving. Each laser scan records tens of millions of data point positions and colours in a point cloud, and hundreds of such point clouds may be combined. This article discusses... (read more)
2020-02-25 10:56:50

UAVs: Where to Focus on Next?

New Technologies Require New Knowledge and Regulations
In June 2018, RSPSoc's 'Photogrammetric Record' publication devoted 11 pages to determining which term they would use for drones. They ultimately decided on ‘unmanned aircraft system’ or ‘UAS’. However, the mere fact that this required 11 pages goes some way towards highlighting the complexity and cross-discipline potential that drones bring, not only to the remote sensing industry but also for multiple other uses, writes Peter Kinghan. Over the past decade we have seen a number of drone uses come through the tried-and-tested period, resulting in unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) becoming a proven technology for a range of industries and professions,... (read more)
2020-02-10 08:38:39

Lidar Point Cloud Segmentation

A Novel Framework for Processing Terrestrial Lidar Data
Terrestrial Lidar data has great potential to produce measurements for as-built building information modelling (BIM). Unfortunately, processing hundreds of millions of points, often contaminated by substantial noise, can be tedious and time-consuming. Normal variation analysis (Norvana) segmentation is an automatic method that can segment large terrestrial Lidar point clouds containing hundreds of millions of points within minutes. Thanks to the high speed, point density and accuracy of modern terrestrial laser scanning (TLS), as-built BIM can be conducted with a high level of detail. But TLS captures not only useful geometric information but also unwanted objects, such as people, animals or... (read more)
2019-05-10 02:00:42

Integrating the ‘Constructioneering’ Workflow Together

The How and Why of the Topcon and Bentley Partnership
Digitalisation and new technologies with the ability to revolutionise the geospatial industry are creating a new playing field for mapping and surveying professionals. This evolving landscape is also reshaping the industry, with new entrants gaining ground and established players seeking to collaborate and combine their specialist areas of expertise in order to offer a total solution. Wim van Wegen, content manager of ‘GIM International’, met with Ted Lamboo, senior vice president of strategic partners at Bentley Systems, and Ewout Korpershoek, executive vice president at Topcon Positioning Systems, at Bentley’s 2017 Year in Infrastructure Conference in Singapore. They discussed the partnership between... (read more)
2018-02-07 11:36:08

FARO Introduces New Scene Webshare Cloud Update

FARO recently announced a new update of SCENE WebShare Cloud, representing a substantial leap forward in worldwide secure 3D reality data exchange, collaborative project management and high-efficiency scan-to-BIM operations among project partners. This next-generation cloud-based platform, with its new Point Cloud Download and AEC Management Platform Integration functionalities, contributes to further driving the digital transformation and global cooperation within the AEC industry. SCENE WebShare Cloud allows high-precision 3D reality data to be stored, viewed, evaluated and shared with authorized persons anywhere and anytime using a web browser. This service delivers powerful functionalities, accelerating the overall productivity by guaranteeing fast reality data... (read more)
2020-03-02 11:24:58

The Rising Demand for Total Stations and Terrestrial Laser Scanners

How the Booming Construction Business Boosts the Geospatial Industry
Increasing investments in large infrastructure and construction projects, and the rising role of building information modelling (BIM), are expected to drive the market for geospatial equipment. BIM’s close connection with spatial information makes it a familiar landscape and offers rich possibilities for surveyors and other geospatial professionals. Geomares – publisher of 'GIM International' and 'Geo-matching' – has analysed the user data and behaviour of thousands of members of the global geospatial community. It is interesting to see how the market of ‘traditional survey equipment’ such as total stations and terrestrial laser scanners is responding to the growing construction market and... (read more)
2019-02-05 02:33:23

Introducing an Automatic Vertical Scanning Tool

Earlier this year, SPH Engineering, the company behind the UgCS mission planner for UAV platforms, launched the new automatic Facade Scan tool of UgCS. The solution, especially developed for drone inspection mission planning, is a time and cost saver for the construction, engineering and mining industries. Various tools for surveying horizontal surfaces, even the uneven ones, have been developed to a high standard and are widely available on the market. Inspecting vertical surfaces is a completely different story — previously it required a lot of manual work and so was a burden for professional drone users. But now, with the... (read more)
2019-10-07 10:13:26

Geospatial Tools that Help Serve the AEC Industry

Of the dozens of geospatial hardware and software tools currently in use, only a few – such as bathymetric Lidar, GNSS-based vehicle tracking devices and ground-penetrating radar (GPR) – are not directly relevant to the architecture, engineering and construction (AEC) industry. The rest of the tools are. A GIS interprets the geographic context of a project, while the survey-grade GNSS technology builds it; aerial photogrammetry maps the project’s site, as UAVs monitor exterior progress; and mobile indoor scanners such as the Trimble Indoor Mobile Mapping Solution (TIMMS) produce as-built point clouds of the interiors, while building information modelling (BIM) manages the project’s... (read more)
2019-11-27 08:48:24
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