The use of the 3D laser scanner in the built environment

Yusuf Arayici*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


Capturing and modelling 3D information of the built environment is a big challenge. Anumber of techniques and technologies are now in use. These include EDM (ElectronicDistance Measurement), GPS (Global Positioning System), and photogrammetric application,remote sensing and traditional building surveying applications. However, the use of thesetechnologies cannot be practical and efficient in regard to time, cost and accuracy.Furthermore, a multi disciplinary knowledge base, created from the studies and researchabout the regeneration aspects is fundamental: historical, architectural, archeologically,environmental, social, economic, etc. In order to have an adequate diagnosis of regeneration,it is necessary to describe buildings and surroundings by means of documentation and plans.However, at this point in time the foregoing is considerably far removed from the realsituation, since more often than not it is extremely difficult to obtain full documentation andcartography, of an acceptable quality, since the material, constructive pathologies and systemsare often insufficient or deficient (flat that simply reflects levels, isolated photographs,..).Sometimes the information in reality exists, but this fact is not known, or it is not easilyaccessible, leading to the unnecessary duplication of efforts and resources.Systems that measure range from the time-of-flight of a laser pulse have been availablefor about 25 years, so this does not constitute new technology. However, the development offast measurement (up to 10000 measurements per second) and a scanning mechanism (usingrotating mirrors) has only occurred in this decade or so. Packaging these components into arobust and reliable instrument has resulted in the innovation of a 3D laser scanner.In this chapter, we discussed 3D laser scanning technology, which can acquire highdensity point data in an accurate, fast way. Besides, the scanner can digitize all the 3Dinformation concerned with a real world object such as buildings, trees and terrain down tomillimetre detail Therefore, it can provide benefits for refurbishment process in regenerationin the Built Environment and it can be the potential solution to overcome the challengesabove. The chapter introduces an approach for scanning buildings, processing the point cloudraw data, and a modelling approach for CAD extraction and building objects classification inIFC (Industry Foundation Classes) format. The approach presented in this section can lead toparametric design and Building Information Modelling (BIM) for existing structures. In thischapter, while use of laser scanners are explained, the integration of it with varioustechnologies and systems are also explored for professionals in the Built Environment.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationBuilt Environment
Subtitle of host publicationDesign, Management and Applications
PublisherNova Science Publishers
Number of pages32
ISBN (Print)9781608769155
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2010
Externally publishedYes


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