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Point cloud : the basis of any 3D end product

Modèle 3D

The point cloud is the first 3-dimensional end product which will be available for processing after the completion of a laser scan.

A point cloud may contain millions, or even billions of points; at present, CAD softwares, even of recent design, are not capable of managing spatial information in these quantities.

A number of software publishers are developing complementary solutions (as Pointools or Lasergen for example) for integration into a professional software (Autocad, PDMS, Microstation, Rhino, Maya, 3DStudioMax etc.)
There are also stand-alone softwares for the processing of these "point cloud" files : Pointools, Realworks or 3DIpsos from Trimble for example.

Depending upon the processing tool selected, the cloud of points will allow the following :
  • the three-dimensional display and manipulation of the digitized installation;
  • the recording of distances between equipment (point to point) or the accurate identification of pipe diameters;
  • segmentation of points cloud into "functional components" (pipes, civil engineering works, instrumentation, structures, etc);
  • isolation of "cut sections" in the cloud, for the generation of section diagrams, longitudinal profiles or 2D plan views (layouts) at any height required;
  • the modelling of mathematical shapes (cylinders, cones, toroids, extrusions, boxes, planes, etc.), using shape recognition functions;
  • the generation of meshes of uneven structures;
  • the detection, analysis, documentation and resolution of collisions between a 3D project and the cloud of points, as a reflection of actual conditions...


Often poorly understood and interpreted, the cloud of points is a formidable tool for the 3D visualization and manipulation of equipment or structures. In some cases, this solution will obviate the need for modelling, which is often a costly operation.

Point cloud inside Autocad through Pointools

 loading the cloud
Nuage de point dans Autocad

    cut sections
Vidéo création de coupes dans un nuage de points sous Autocad

Point cloud inside PDMS (Aveva) through Lasergen (Trimble)

 Lasergen & PDMS
Vidéo: Lasergen pour gérer des nuages de points sous PDMS

 Measure inside clouds of points
Vidéo: Lasergen pour gérer des nuages de points sous PDMS

  Clash detection
Vidéo: détection de clash entre modèle 3D et le nuage de point sous PDMS

Point cloud inside Pointools

Oil Plateform inside Pointools
Vidéo: Nuage de points de plateforme dans Pointools

Pipe-Rack with Pointools
Vidéo: Nuage de points d'un Pipe-Rack dans Pointools

urbica 3D laser scanning