New CAD/Point Cloud Comparison Tool Lines Up
Emily Pollock posted on June 12, 2018 | | 816 views
A comparison of the point cloud and CAD models of the same pipe, in Dot3D Edit. The ability to directly compare the two models is the result of a collaboration between DotProduct and Assemble Systems. (Image courtesy of DotProduct.)
A comparison of the point cloud and CAD models of the same pipe, in Dot3D Edit. The ability to directly compare the two models is the result of a collaboration between DotProduct and Assemble Systems. (Image courtesy of DotProduct.)

Working together, DotProduct and Assemble Systems have made it possible for users to register and compare a site's pointcloud data with its BIM model while still on-site.

DotProduct is well-known for its 3D data capture solutions, and Assemble provides a software as a service (SaaS) platform that helps construction companies manage CAD and building information modeling (BIM) data. The companies have now linked Dot Product's Dot3D Edit point cloud viewing software to the Assemble server, allowing users to download CAD files into Dot3D for easy comparison.

On June 5, at SPAR 3D 2018, the two companies demonstrated their collaboration for the first time by performing a pipe spool quality assurance test.

They used the point cloud data of a pipe, captured on DotProduct's DPI-8X scanner, and imported the data into Dot3D Edit. After cropping out all the surrounding data (anything that wasn't part of the pipe), they imported the CAD file of the project from the Assemble cloud server. They then aligned the point cloud model with the CAD model, and let the software automatically find (and color-code) any differences between the two models.

The two pipe models aligned. Color-coding shows the areas of greatest difference between the pointcloud and the CAD models. (Image courtesy of DotProduct.)
The two pipe models aligned. Color-coding shows the areas of greatest difference between the pointcloud and the CAD models. (Image courtesy of DotProduct.)

After the two models were compared, they were able to send a quick report back to the Assemble cloud server, logging the point cloud data and the difference between it and the original model. The entire process, including editing the point cloud model for extraneous data at the beginning, took less than 20 minutes.

This collaboration has been over half a year in the making. The two companies announced their partnership in November 2017 at Autodesk University. “Our partnership with Assemble Systems is bringing a process that has traditionally taken days and weeks down to minutes on the tablet," DotProduct CMO Tom Greaves said at the time. "Decisions that would have otherwise required extensive back and forth between the field and the office can now be confidently executed on the jobsite.”

Currently, the system works on both Android and Windows, allowing it to be used on phones or tablets, directly at the site. There is no word yet on whether the system will eventually be available on Mac or iOS.


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