BBC’s ONE’s 60 minute special Rome’s Invisible City follows ScanLAB Projects and presenters Alexander Armstrong and Dr Michael Scott as they explore the hidden underground secrets of Ancient Rome. The show explores Roman infrastructure and ingenuity, all below ground level. We journeyed via the icy, crystal clear waters of subterranean aqueducts that feed the Trevi fountain and two thousand year old sewers which still function beneath the Roman Forum today, to decadent, labyrinthine catacombs. Our laser scans map these hidden treasures, revealing for the first time the complex network of tunnels, chambers and passageways without which Rome could not have survived as a city of a million people.
Used in the program is our very own FARO Focus3D. The FARO Focus3D Laser Scanner creates a precise, virtual copy of the scanned objects at millimeter accuracies in only minutes by capturing up to 976,000 data points per second. At those speeds and with features such as auto-registration, projects are completed in a fraction of the time and can accrue savings up to 50% in scanning and processing time. Intuitive controls on the touchscreen display make the Focus simple to operate; its small size and weight facilitate portability and setup on site.
At 120 revolutions per minute, an imbalance would have devastating effects. Efficiency is also highly dependent on the blade’s precision and positioning. Such turbines are manufactured at Andritz Hydro GmbH in Ravensburg, Germany, a division of the Andritz Group.
In order to optimise the production and alignment of these complex components, Andritz Hydro GmbH sought a solution to carry out measurements with narrower tolerances and at higher speeds. After researching thoroughly and testing multiple products, Andritz Hydro GmbH purchased several portable coordinate measuring machines from FARO, which were customized for their measurement needs: several FaroArms and a FARO Laser Tracker for dimension monitoring, CAD comparisons and iterative alignment procedures.
Measuring a turbine wheel is complex and challenging because of the dimensions of the,components being measured. In addition to that, the components are not freely accessible from all sides, i.e., mounted on a measurement bench. Andritz Hydro GmbH benefits from the portability of FARO measurement solutions, which enable the company to carry out precise and reliable measurements in the production area, warehouse and even onsite.
Measurements are usually carried out at the production site amidst other components and tools, using FaroArms in different sizes and a FARO Laser Tracker. These mobile, tactile measurement instruments are ideally suitable here: while there are not many measurement points, these are often in hard to reach places or even hidden. Due to their versatility, FARO measurements solutions are not only useful for the quality assurance of blades, but also for many other tasks, such as analysis measurements, incoming goods inspections, finding cracks in raw castings, the alignment of welded components, etc.
For several years now, PolyWorks|Inspector software has been used for the organization and analysis of the measurement data. The alignment functions and the functions related to the analysis and export of data are particularly popular with customers. Christoph Müller Henker, who works in Measurement and Testing Technology at Andritz Hydro, appreciates the fact that the oftware is not limited to standard situations: “We can take a variety of paths to reach our goal using PolyWorks. We use the many export and import options and interfaces to find our own solutions.” In addition to that, each division of the turbine manufacture is a “customer” and has needs when it comes to processing data. The software has no trouble handling all of the respective formats.
While the challenges related to the size of the components are no longer an issue, there is no everyday routine. Andritz does not use mass production; each turbine is one of a kind. The measurement requirements are therefore ever-changing. “Each measurement is its own project”, explains Yener Korkmaz, Head of Measurement and Testing Technology at Andritz Hydro, who is responsible for quality assurance for incoming goods and in-house production.
Size and accessibility mean that the FaroArm and FARO Laser Tracker have to be moved around a lot. The software speeds up the implementation of the measurement instruments. It is enough to align the respective measurement instrument within the coordinate system at a new location. The organisation of the measurement data and the management of the various device positions within the coordinate system are controlled by the software. FARO Laser Trackers and FaroArms can also be combined in one measurement process, which increases both flexibility and range.
When changing locations, the FaroArm is calibrated via the tracker’s coordinate system. The software registers the measurement arm in the coordinate system of the Laser Tracker, without needing to record reference points. This combination uses the classic FARO TrackArm.
For hard to reach measurement points on the turbine wheel or shaft, the PolyWorks App|Talisman for mobile devices such as iPhone or iPad is extremely useful. Measurements can be initiated and project data accessed from a PC using remote access. The measurement technician can monitor the measurement data and correct measurement errors directly from the component. The turbine manufacturer has also found these reliable, state-of-the-art measurement systems useful for other applications. The correct positioning of the individual components can be determined prior to initiating the welded root seam. The systems are also used for balancing the welded components, with a maximum position tolerance of 0.4 mm.
Today, this takes only two hours. Using wire and solder, it previously took at least two days to bring the individual elements into position and ensure concentricity. Furthermore, because the equipment is mobile, the quality of supplied components can be tested directly at the installation site.
Check out the latest music video from German Post-Punk band Sizarr, Made using our very own FARO Focus3D Laser Scanner to create point clouds it creates a refreshingly original music video through the production of pointilistic effect.
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When an accident occurs a reliable rapid documentation is essential for forensic purposes.
Police forces and crime scene investigators alike often turn to FARO’s Focus3D Laser Scanner to ensure the capture and recording of the entire scene in 3D. However the capturing of details in narrow or not easily accessible areas where scanning with a tripod can be difficult.
Providing the highest efficiency in its field coupled with the added time saving, due to both the mobility of the scanner and its intuitive acquisition of gathered data the FARO Freestyle3D really is a perfect accompaniment to our FARO Focus3D Laser Scanner.
Not only can police officers and investigators rapidly capture any event scene in great detail, allowing for delay minimization, the FARO Freestyle3D scan data can be easily transferred to a computer for further processing and the merging with other point clouds to deliver an absolute 3D .
Museum visitors in Stockholm will soon be able to explore a real Egyptian mummy in a virtual autopsy that combines three scanning technologies for a ground-breaking new level of realism.
Since archaeologists first dared to enter the pyramids, the public has been fascinated by the exploration of relics from ancient Egypt. Now visitors to the Museum of Mediterranean and Near Eastern Antiquities – Medelhavsmuseet in Stockholm will be able to virtually peel away the layers and actually look inside real mummies that have been carefully guarded for more than 4’000 years.
The experience will be powered by Inside Explorer, a tool developed by Interactive Institute Swedish ICT. Thomas Rydell, Studio Director at Interactive Institute, heads the team of visualisation and interaction software specialists behind the project. He says “The ‘Inside Explorer’ system is already in use in a number of museums, but the textural detail of the mummy exhibit due to open in early 2014 is unprecedented.”
The mummy was taken to a hospital for a Computer Tomography (CT) scan, which provided volumetric information of the inside of the mummy. But CT scans do not provide sufficient surface detail. This is where FARO stepped in to help.
A FARO Edge ScanArm was used for the 3-day mummy scanning session, which was conducted by members of the Interactive Institute team and Autodesk: “We are software engineers and not measuring experts but we were able to use the FARO hardware almost immediately,” says Rydell. “FARO came in to help us get started and to check a few things that we might have otherwise missed.” The members of the team were swapping roles all the time and taking photogrammetric images, “so the ease of use and mobility of the FARO device was a huge enabler,” explains Rydell.
Now, with the mummies safely locked away to protect them from UV or physical damage, post processing is underway. Autodesk reality computing software is being used to create detailed textured meshes from the regular 2D photos and the cloud-point data.
The volumetric data from CT scanning and the textured mesh data from the surface scanning will then be combined in Inside Explorer, Interactive Institute’s own real time rendering software, creating an accurate digital representation of the mummy. Museum researchers or visitors will then be able to use simple gestures to explore the mummy as a whole, zoom in to see fine detail or go below the surface. “Thanks to the 3D scans of the surface, we have the possibility to get enough surface resolution to establish a powerful and realistic first impression,” says Rydell.
Users can also remove the sarcophagus, peel away the layers and explore the inside of the exhibit.
This image is part of a digitization project which includes more than 100,000 scans that were collected with the FARO Focus3D laser scanner.
Three months of hard work have enabled Actual Foncier Topographie (AFT), a company specialised in surveying, to scan the Palace of Versailles to create a digital platform for a 3D virtual tour of the prestigious interiors and gardens. It is now possible to take a virtual tour of the Château de Versailles via Google Earth.
AFT was commissioned by Google to scan Versailles and turn its magnificent facades and roofs, luxurious interior and its beautiful gardens and fountains into a 3D model. Virtually cross the Hall of Mirrors or walk through the beautiful gardens. It’s really remarkable.
Here’s a YouTube video to give you an idea…
Capristo, specialist in exhaust systems, demonstrates how to customise carbon production for automotive parts.
In this video Capristo and FARO experts show the entire manufacturing process of an engine bay hood for the Ferrari 458 Spider.
It starts with creating a 3D picture using a 3D laser scanner which forms the basis for the development of the prototype. The scanned data are then prepared, cleaned and exported in such a way that these can be further processed using CAD-Software. Have a look what happens next…
Stuttgart’s students stunned the scene with their simple kit for a 3D mobile mapping system. Ann-Kathrin Kinscher, an intern at FARO Europe, tells the story…
Mobile laser scanning is an essential part of today’s 3D documentation technologies. It is already widely used in generating 3D city models, as well as in registrering roadway damage and in the CGI (Computer Generated Imagery) sector. Through interaction of an inertial measurement unit, with a GPS system and a laser scanner it is possible to capture a 3D point cloud. New developments in IMU sensor technology (MEMS based) open up new markets which is very promising for the future.
Currently, such systems are still very costly and therefore rarely used by companies as opposed to surveying. Furthermore, cities could become car-free in future, which would mean that mobile mapping systems can no longer be used by car.
As part of my master thesis which was done in cooperation with FARO, Applanix and Tobias Moehlihs, a university colleague, I thought about all these facts and developed a solution: A mobile mapping system which is completely flexible and easy to set up. The principle follows the concept: “Do it yourself”.
At the moment it is still a prototype, which will be further developed, e.g. cameras will be integrated into the system. With the Focus3D laser scanner FARO offers a cost-effective component for such a system, because of its small size and low weight. After testing several inertial measurement units with the Focus on, I decided to use the POS LV220 from Applanix as the IMU. Hereby focusing on overall results and synchronization-options.
This system delivers robust data even in cities with high buildings. Additionally, with the two-antenna system of the POS LV220 the heading is improved by the GAMS solution (GPS Azimuth Measurement Subsystem) developed by Applanix. To adhere to the principle of simplicity I use the trigger signal from the FARO Focus3D to synchronize the components. This means that every time a new mirror rotation of the laser scanner starts, a trigger signal is sent to the IMU, which saves the position and orientation.
By combining a laser scanner, an IMU and a vehicle of your choice you can start setting up your own mobile mapping system, as shown on the photo above. The POS LV220 contains the IMU, two GPS Antennas, the DMI and the processor. The FARO laser scanner Focus3D with the Helical-Kit, a laptop, a battery and a bike trailer finalise the system.
The bike trailer has several advantages; it is a ‘green’ solution and it can access many more locations than a car. I scanned an old church in the pedestrian zone in Stuttgart within a couple of minutes. This would take an hour if you would scan it statistically.
For the transformation of the laserscan data I wrote a program using Matlab. FARO SCENE is used for pointcloud editing and POSPac from Applanix is used for postprocessing the GPS data.
To sum it up you can quickly and easily scan with this self-built compatible system in almost every environment and situation. The software is easy to use. With post processing in POSPac and easy point cloud editing with SCENE you receive precise positions.
Jaguar Land Rover (JLR) is the UK’s largest automotive design, engineering and manufacturing employer and operates from 5 sites in the Midlands and the North of England.
To help satisfy the rapidly growing global demand for its cars, JLR plans to deliver 40 significant product actions over the next five years.
“In addition to using portable measurement systems for the validation of BIW structures, it is also used for measuring panels in both pre-production and production runs. The outstanding levels of accuracy and repeatability that we are able to achieve through our use of FaroArm Platinum and the Laser Line Probe, ensures that we can detect micron deviations from our CAD models, BIW Supervisor, Martyn Smith explains.”
The Togliattikauchuk plant is one of the largest petrochemical complexes of its type and focuses on the production of synthetic rubber for use in anything from car tyres to medical devices and from rubberised fabrics to construction industry products.
To facilitate operational improvements, a 3D scan of the whole plant was commissioned and the 3DLS team took on this challenge. Scanning conditions were close to extreme since the plant production processes produced dangerous temperatures and pressures, escaping steam, harmful chemical emissions, noise and vibrations.
Read here how the 3DLS team achieved their goal.