6 Ways to Use 3D Reality Capture for Building Construction

In the construction business 3D reality capture technology is changing the way that we work.

Reality capture techniques can take captured data from laser scans and other sources of your building site, and use them to create 3D models, point cloud models, or even render BIM models with a scan-to-BIM solution. Real-world plans that used to take weeks and repeated site visits by teams can now be done in minutes using 3D laser scanning or photogrammetry software.

The ability to create a pinpoint accurate 3D model of an existing building or a deeply precise survey of a building site without weeks of work is itself a huge benefit of reality capture in construction. But when you start to look at the other benefits of reality capture and 3D models on your building project, it’s easy to get excited about the potential.

Let’s take a look at 6 ways that you can use 3D reality capture software in your building construction process.

Easy approvals

Have you ever worked with a client who had a hard time visualizing the finished product? You have shown them the 2D drawing, the blueprints, and the renderings. You’ve walked them through the site, showing them in person exactly what you have planned. They just can’t quite see it.

This back and forth can make approvals and sign-offs drag on and on. But 3D reality capture can change all of that. Instead of talking in the abstract, or relying on 2D to communicate 3D ideas, reality capture, and 3D software, can help anyone to visualize even the most complex designs.

This will help your clients make more informed decisions. And that can speed up approvals.

Virtual site visits

On that same token, those site visits can now happen, well, off-site. Because 3D reality capture is so effective, accurate, and easy, you’ll be able to walk a client, an investor, or even an inspector through your site directly from your computer or device. They will be able to see the site clearly, and you could even provide scan data from different points in the process to allow for progress reviews off-site for construction progress tracking.

Virtual site visits are easier, safer, and more cost-effective than ongoing on-sites. Like we’ve said before, “Once a build is underway, engineers need to physically check construction against design files, and the best way to do this is by creating a detailed 3D scan of the facility in progress.”

A 3D reality capture model of a building

Improved accuracy

Design and construction rely on accuracy. While by-hand surveys are accurate, there’s nothing that can rival 3D scanning and reality capture tools for precision. As AutoDesk puts it, “Modern reality capture technology makes out-of-date 2D blueprints and measuring tape obsolete. Instead of multiple site visits to double and triple check measurements, a single drone survey with photo-to-point-cloud creation provides an accurate 3D model based on actual site conditions in a fraction of the time, with a remarkable level of detail.”

A whitepaper from Rand expands on this idea, saying “A detailed model of a building can provide value far beyond the time, effort, and money saved during the design phase. Typically, generation of layout points is a manual process that requires measuring tapes or lasers. With the right modeling techniques in place, however, construction firms can use a model for automated generation of layout points.”

Innovative renovations

One of the most incredible things that 3D reality capture can do for building construction is the creation of as-built models of existing buildings. These can make it possible to be more courageous with renovation designs. Because you can see millimeter accurate details about your site, you can virtually engineer your (and your client’s) wildest dreams, and more accurately predict the outcomes of your designs.

Conflict resolution

3D reality capture, and the right point cloud visualizer, can provide a single source of truth for your construction site. As plans progress or change, the reworks would cause a paperwork nightmare, as new plans had to be compiled for everyone involved. But the digital nature of 3d reality capture for building construction means that a change can be instantly shared with the whole team.

This will make it easier than ever to make sure that your electrical team has the new diagrams, and that your plumbing team is operating from the same set.

Incredible collaboration

That single source of truth, and the ability for everyone to see 3D plans and models, makes collaboration easier and more accurate than ever.

Elsewhere in our blog, we’ve discussed the potential for 3D reality capture software and point cloud technology to fuel collaboration. We said “From design to build to maintenance, all stakeholders from engineers to architects to builders to facility owners need to be on the same page. Surveyors can facilitate this easy collaboration by bringing 3D reality scanning to the table, providing accurate representations of sites as they actually exist.”

When entire project teams are on the same page, and when stakeholders can see and interact with the designs and plans from the start, then everything operates better, more quickly, and more efficiently. This is the benefit of 3d reality capture for the building construction industry.

Try out our demo to learn more! It’s fun!

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Ivan Marten

Senior Partner Emeritus at Boston Consulting Group

Ivan Marten is a senior partner emeritus at Boston Consulting Group. He is also a member of JP Global Digital Advisory Board as from April 2019. He has supported various companies in the energy, Oil & Gas, power, and environment sectors on developing their strategic visions for over 30 years. Ivan holds a degree in economics and business administration, and a Ph.D. in business administration and economics from the Universidad Autónoma de Madrid. He was named one of the" Top 25 most influential consultants of the year by Consulting Magazine in 2003.

Javier San Juan

President of the Latin America Region at L’Oreal

Javier is the president of the Latin America region at L’Oreal. He is a member of JP Global Digital Advisory Board as from January 2019. He has over 27 years of experience with a world leading cosmetic company where he held various positions across Europe and the Americas. Javier holds a master’s degree in Law, a master’s degree in Economics from the University ICADE in Spain, and a Diplôme HEC from the Hautes Etudes Commerciales de Paris He is the co-founder of Gibraltar Corporation and is one of the advisory board members.

Elizabeth Coronado

Co-Founder and Head of Marketing

Elizabeth graduated cum laude with a bachelor’s degree in Organizational Communication. She has three years of experience supporting the management of internal and external communications. She holds a Digital Marketing Certificate from the University of Miami.

She works hand-in-hand with multiple departments including Quality Management System, Human Resources, and Marketing. She is currently involved in the process of raising funds.

Argenis Pelayo

Product Manager

Argenis has a bachelor's degree in Geophysical Engineering and an MBA. 

Argenis is experienced in the implementation of agile methodology, and project planning. He is knowledgeable in C++, MATLAB, and Python programming languages. He has almost two years of experience in his field.

King Yung

Data Processing Specialist

King is a mechanical maintenance engineer with an MBA. He has almost 15 years of experience in the oil & gas industry. In the last five years, he has specialized and certified in laser scanning. He is focused on industrial data processing in Panama, the Republic of Panama.

Eduardo Colmenares

Technical Sales

Eduardo is a mechanical engineer with an MBA. He has more than 10 years of experience in the construction and oil & gas industry. In the last five years, he has specialized and is certified in laser scanning. Eduardo has focused on leading industrial asset digitalization in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.

Valentin Malave

Project Leader

Valentin is a civil engineer with almost 20 years of experience as a project engineer. In the last two years, he has focused on leading industrial asset digitalization in Houston, TX. He has specialized and is certified in laser scanning.

Ana Gutierrez

Project Leader

Ana has 10 years of experience in the design and engineering area of telecommunications and networks, and digitalization. In the last four years, she has specialized and certified in laser scanning.

Customer and results-oriented. She holds a Bachelor’s degree in electrical, electronics, and communications engineering, a Master in Management, and a MBA.

Roberto Ocando Morales

Research & Development Leader

Roberto holds an associate degree in information technology and a law degree. He has an MBA and a specialization in strategic senior management.

He has been a scrum master focused on software and applications development. He has 24 years of experience in his field.

He was second place within the 100 Best Technology Projects Executed in Venezuela in 2006- according to IT Manager 100 Empresas High-Tech 2006

Marvelys Gonzalez

Head of Operations

Marvelys is a civil engineer with a master in project management and specialized in project design and hydraulic engineering. She also holds an MBA and a master in Big Data & Business Intelligence.

She has more than 17 years of experience in her field, and for the last three years, she has focused on industrial data processing. She is located in Mexico City (DF).

Hernan Ocando

IT Team Leader

Hernan has more than 20 years of experience in computer science, cryptography, IT, data center design, telecommunications, and digitalization.

He also has experience as an information security management system auditor, and data processing platform manager in both private and public corporations.

Hernan holds a bachelor’s degree in Computer Engineering and a master in Computer Science, Finance, and Strategic Management.

Freddy Martinez

Partner and President

Freddy is a successful senior executive with more than 35 years of experience supporting global companies in their growth.

Freddy is a strong business development professional with an MBA from The Wharton School and an MSE focused on materials science & engineering from The Moore School, University of Pennsylvania. Both degrees were simultaneously earned from 1984 to 1986.

Daniel Coronado

COO & Co-Founder

Daniel is the chief operating officer and co-founder of JP Global Digital. He is responsible for leading the entire overall global operations of JP Global Digital and the implementation of organic growth.

Daniel has a law degree. He has over 25 years of experience founding and developing a series of corporations in the agricultural, mining, construction, and technology sector since 2015.

Ysaac Coronado

CEO and Co-Founder

Ysaac is the CEO and co-founder of JP Global Digital. He is responsible for the overall business performance of JP Global Digital and is highly committed to the development of high-quality 3D digital solutions and to obtain the highest level of client satisfaction and growth for the Oil & Gas, Large Industrial, and Maritime Sectors.

Ysaac has a law degree with a specialization in corporate law. Ysaac has over 25 years of experience founding and developing a series of corporations in the agricultural, mining, construction, and technology sector since 2015.