3D Laser Scanning at Daimler AG


3D Laser Scanning at Daimler AG.

Reconstruction operations require structural surveys. The more precise a structural survey is, the more time and costs can be saved in project planning and execution. That is easier said than done because the plans, which have to be utilised, are often only on paper in 2D. They are regularly not even up to date or they do not exist anymore. What should be done? Manual measurements or photogrammetry are expensive and quite imprecise. However buildings and facilities can be documented in 3D via remote 3D laser scanning.
The 3D laser scanning has been utilized by Daimler AG for years in order to document production facilities and structural conditions. The advantages of the 3D laser scanning technology are presented by means of a project that the 3D-Scanline Engineering Office has concluded for the Daimler AG.
For a start: What is 3D laser scanning at all?

Surface geometries can be documented in 3D by means of a 3D laser scanner. The surfaces of objects are scanned by a laser beam point by point. In such a way a discrete 3D scan points set, which is referred to as point cloud, is created. The light that is reflected by the objects is recorded. The distance data arise as a result of the measurement of the light beam run time, so that an authentic 3D point cloud occurs.

3D Laser Scanner + 3D Scan (Point Cloud)

CAD Model


Scanners are very expensive devices. Their operation and the administration of the captured data require a lot of experience. That is why it is worthwhile to use the support of a service provider for surveys and for the subsequent data processing. Some service providers cover the entire workflow: from the survey planning through the scanning itself to the CAD modelling. The 3D-Scanline Engineering Office provides complex services of 3D laser scanning, CAD modelling, and visualisation. Furthermore 3D-Scanline develops the ScanManager Software in co-operation with iQsoftlab GmbH (Ltd). Black-and-white and coloured scans from high-definition 3D laser scanners are viewed, analysed, and managed by means of the ScanManager Software. 3D-Scanline works also in the area of architectural design and reconstruction planning.
Project Description:

  • Survey at Daimler AG by means of 3D laser scanning.
  • Creation of 3D CAD documentation on the basis of 3D scan data.
  • Computer simulation.

Within the context of the decision of Daimler AG to relocate facilities, the actual state as well as the new position had to be scanned precisely und presented in CAD documents. The data of the actual state, captured by 3D- Scanline, were the prerequisite for the successful planning and execution of the reconstruction measures.


CAD Model

Horizontal Slice through the point cloud

CAD Documentation

Computer Simulation

The ScanManager Software as a smart 3D scan data management system

The transformation of the 3D scan data into CAD data is a cost- and time-consuming component of the 3D laser scanning technology. The recognition of objects (planes, cylinder, spheres, etc.) in point clouds is associated largely with manual work as well as with low productivity. Diverse algorithms support the user, so that he/she can recognise objects in point clouds, but they are still incapable to execute the object recognition automatically. Hence the question: Can the 3D scan data be utilised as basis of design works without transforming them into CAD data?
The high-performance 3D scan data management system of the iQsoftlab GmbH and of the 3D Scanline Engineering Office provides the answer of that question: Yes. 3D scan data should not be regarded just as a simple basis for drawing over original images. ScanManager discovers the surplus value of your 3D scan data.
The ScanManager software of iQsoftlab Ltd is a high-performance, practice-oriented, and professional software tool for viewing, analysing, and managing black-and-white and coloured scans from high-resolution 3D laser scanners.

The most important features of ScanManager are the following:

  1. Converting of Scan Data. Supported file formats of Faro, Leica, Riegl, and Zoller+Frцhlich.
  2. Visualization of Scan Data. Supported file formats of Faro, Leica, Riegl, and Zoller+Frцhlich.
  3. Generation of horizontal, vertical, and at-will-leaned sections through point clouds.
  4. Measurement of distances in scan data:
    ▪ Distance between two points.
    ▪ Orthogonal distance between a point and a surface.
    ▪ Distance between objects, recognised in a point cloud (e.g. between pipelines).
  5. Simultaneous management of several projects.
  6. Export of point cloud sections.
  7. Point cloud export into DXF, PTC, ASCII, and IGES format.
  8. DXF export of lines, surfaces, cylinders, spheres as basis for the transfer of scans into CAD.
  9. Placement of comments / notes to certain scan positions. Export of comments / notes as txt and Excel data.
  10. Import of DXF data and overlaying point cloud sections with them. The DXF layer structure remains unchanged.
  11. Import of VRML data into point clouds.
  12. Variance Analysis of a VRML model and a point cloud by means of distance measurement.
  13. Overlaying of several parallel running point cloud sections.
  14. Object recognitionin in point clouds (plane, cylinder, and sphere).
  15. Recognition of object edges.

The iQsoftlab GmbH has integrated the ScanManager Software into the facility management (FM) system of Daimler AG in close co-operation with the corporation. Thus quite new dimensions and further activity areas for the FM are discovered: management of real estates on the basis of cost-optimising 3d scan data. It becomes possible via the definition of evaluable objects within the 3D scan data. The iQsoftlab GmbH has already submitted a patent application concerning the innovative concept of 3D scan data integration with FM systems.

ScanManager @ Daimler FM System:

  • Visualisation of scans in FM systems
  • Measurement of distances
  • Placement of attributes to objects and surfaces
  • Inquiry of processes states
  • All persons, engaged in a project, have the scanned environment on their PCs.
  • Independence of project management in terms of location
  • Intuitive communication tool for all persons, engaged in a project