Leica Geosystems, Inc., the pioneer of measurement technologies, and Autodesk Inc., a leader in 3D design, engineering, and entertainment software, have formed a collaboration to provide wider access to premier reality-capture and BIM-to-field layout solutions for professionals involved in laser scanning, building construction layout and related markets. The alliance creates new opportunities for professionals working with Autodesk software to leverage the high-accuracy data from Leica Geosystems’ sensors directly within popular Autodesk authoring tools. Multiple technology integrations are being explored as both companies look for ways to create synergies that will benefit their joint customers.
Accurate Field Layout Gets Easier
In field layout, the new development enables professionals who use Autodesk BIM software, including Autodesk AutoCAD, Autodesk Revit and Autodesk Navisworks, to conduct BIM-based layout and quality assurance as-builting in the field easily and with confidence using the Autodesk BIM 360 Layout iPad app communicating directly with Leica iCON robot 50 robotic total stations. Leica iCON is one of the only full-featured robots to be integrated with the Autodesk BIM 360 Layout app.
The Leica iCON robot 50 is designed specifically for ease of use within the construction industry. The robotic total station offers the most accurate reflectorless measurements in its class along with industry-leading tracking performance and patented PowerSearch technology for fast prism acquisition. The Leica iCON robot 50 can be operated from the field controller at the prism pole as the point positioning is needed, enabling easy layout and as-build checks with a single person.
The Autodesk BIM 360 Layout iPad app uses points created in Autodesk Point Layout pushed to the BIM 360 Glue cloud service to provide general contractors and mechanical, electrical and plumbing (MEP) contractors the ability to connect BIM to the construction layout process. The app connects design intent from a digital model with the physical world by controlling the Leica iCON robot 50. The field user is guided to physical locations on the jobsite based on points created in the 3D model that are represented in the app.
“This new integration allows for simple as-builting of points as well as 3D layout from AutoCAD, Revit, or Navisworks models,” said Cathi Hayes, BIM strategy and business development director for Leica Geosystems NAFTA. “Professionals who need the functionality to create or manipulate points and points lists in the field still have the option of using iCON Build and MicroSurvey Layout software. The Autodesk BIM 360 Layout iPad app integration, however, will enable BIM departments to quickly and easily get involved with construction layout and as-builting to backcheck and verify construction in place.”
Accurate Reality Capture Gets Faster
In as-built laser scanning and construction validation, the new alliance allows professionals to import native point cloud data from the industry-leading Leica ScanStation P16 laser scanner directly into Autodesk ReCap software for a streamlined, simplified workflow that makes it easier for new users to reap the benefits of 3D data capture.
Combining high quality and performance with the highest environmental robustness in the market, the Leica ScanStation P16 is designed for easy entry into the world of 3D laser scanning. Its attractive price-performance ratio and user-friendly interface make it an attractive solution for all short-range applications. The one-touch scan button and wizard style software guarantee an easy workflow and enable fast data checks in the field. Combined with WLAN remote control, the Leica ScanStation P16 can be operated by any handheld device.
The Autodesk ReCap family of products and services easily translates reality-capture data into meaningful and reliable 3D information that integrates seamlessly with Autodesk software (beginning with 2014 versions). Autodesk ReCap is a free utility that converts point cloud data into the .rcs data format that can be read by all Autodesk software. ReCap 360 adds a web service to convert photos to point clouds, while ReCap Ultimate adds the ability to register point clouds from any sensor or scanner.
“Construction professionals and service providers who need survey grade, scalable point cloud processing and manipulation tools can continue to use Leica Cyclone software and CloudWorx plug-ins to view, reference, analyze, share and represent point cloud data as traditional or enhanced deliverables,” said Cathi Hayes, BIM strategy and business development director for Leica Geosystems NAFTA. “Professionals whose primary goal is to import point clouds into Autodesk ReCap software, however, can now do so directly from the Leica ScanStation P16, allowing them to extend point cloud usage to more team members. The customer can save time and costs with this more streamlined and simpler process.”
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