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Home>About Iv > Insights & News > 2019 > How the 3D scan car contributes to managing and maintaining the municipal area more efficiently
How the 3D scan car contributes to managing and maintaining the municipal area more efficiently 3D-laserscanning 3D-scanauto Assetmanagement

A single collection, multiple uses

When it comes to areal management and maintenance, it is expected that the municipality always retains control. Given that the budgets are under increasing pressure, an important question is: how can the management and maintenance of an area be made as efficient and cost-effective as possible?
Iv-Infra helps municipalities to do this by deploying its self-developed 3D scan car to map the area in question. This special vehicle quickly and very accurately maps the road including all objects in the immediate vicinity, and with just one measurement; delivers valuable information for multiple applications of asset management. In combination with smart automation of data processing, the 3D scan car contributes to increased efficiency of areal management and maintenance. But how exactly?

Which relevant data does the car present?

Regarding asset management, the duties and responsibilities are very diverse and often spread over several administrators within a municipality. In order to gain insight into (the current state of) the area, each administrator requires specific information. Furthermore, each administrator may have a specific part of the area measured to obtain their required information, but this can be done more efficiently.

Administrators can easily retrieve a lot of relevant information from the scan data (point clouds, 360° photos and high-resolution photos). The scan car maps all characteristics of the road (such as longitudinal flatness, transverse flatness, canting, road and strip widths, damage, detection loops and road markings). Simultaneously, all objects in the immediate vicinity (such as viaducts, gantries, crash barriers, traffic signs, trees, buildings and lampposts) are also mapped. Dimensions and distances are easily retrievable from the measurement data. For example, it’s very easy to see whether obstacles are positioned too close to the road, what the clearance heights of civil engineering works are, whether the thresholds in the road are still in accordance with the requirements, whether traffic signs and traffic lights are placed in the correct positions and whether the road markings still provide optimal reflection. Iv-Infra also recently used the 3D scan car to test the rainwater drainage system of a large bridge against the applicable laws and regulations. The scan car is also used for mapping and testing non-flood defence objects situated on dikes and embankments. For example, we recently reduced the hours of inspection initially reserved for mapping trees along the Zuid-Willemsvaart from 80 hours to just one day.

Accuracy to the millimetre

The scan car is equipped with a very accurate IMU (Inertial Measurement Unit) and three advanced laser scanners, accurate GPS, ten cameras for 360° photos and three HD cameras for imaging damaged road surface. The combination of these systems results in measurement data that are accurate to a few millimetres, which is exceptionally high. And because the environment is visualised while driving, there is no need for roads to be closed thus preventing traffic hindrance.

Smart automation

A day of scanning and taking photos can easily produce more than two terabytes of raw data. But as an administrator, you can't do very much with this. All this data must be edited to obtain the desired information. Initially, processing raw data into a clean point cloud took a few days, but Iv-Infra has reduced this time to one night by cleverly automating the processes. In addition, as many objects as possible in the point cloud are automatically recognised and classified, such as road lines and markings, canting of the road, lampposts, trees and crash barriers. This is how we ensure that (road) administrators can more quickly access current information about their assets.

With the help of machine learning, we are currently developing a tool to recognise road surface damage shown on the high-resolution photos. The ideal scenario for the future is to push automation to such an extent that our software can recognise specific damage and that it will be able to apply a diagnosis, a risk assessment and link it to a management measure. With regards to this, there are still many opportunities and challenges to be optimising further!
Would you like to know more about the possibilities for your project? Joost will be pleased to brainstorm with you about the opportunities and possibilities the 3D scan car may provide for your project. Contact Joost via 088 943 3200 or send him an email.
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