SPAR Calls for Papers

spar_pt_grp_4cSpar Point Group has announced their Call for Papers for the renamed SPAR 3D Expo & Conference. They are now accepting abstracts for its 2016 conference program, which will be held in The Woodlands, TX, USA, April 11-14, 2016. The due date is December 6, 2015.

SPAR International was renamed SPAR 3D Expo & Conference to enhance appeal for asset owners seeking information on 3D technologies and leveraging their potential for cost reduction, safety enhancement, and monitoring assets in real time. At the same time, early adopters will experience latest 3D tools in specially-designed tracks for 3D Pros.

As a result the abstracts are being requested for a mix of introductory and advanced topics as well as a number of industry vertical markets.

For those interested in exhibiting at the 2016 event, contact For more information and to submit a proposal, visit

Texas is going to be the center of the 3D mapping universe and much more with SPAR and ASPRS IGTF 2016 both occurring in the same week. IGTF is in Fort Worth which is only an hour’s drive from Houston. You can easily do both.

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Digital Coast

Shallow_bathy_CoverNOAA’s Office for Coastal Management maintains an impressive website that hosts a wide variety of digital data sets. The Digital Coast is a data registry that has over 100 different types of data collections and over 1500 data sets. All are cataloged, described and free.

They also offer a blog. The Digital Coast GeoZone offers tech talk about the data collection.

It’s a tremendous resource that could be of real value if you are working in the coastal zone. These are our tax dollars being put to good use.

Posted in airborne LiDAR, Environmental, Government, Hydrographic LiDAR, Mapping, remote sensing, Research | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

3D Modeling a Country

3D_Citymodel_02_hexr92Well it is more like a city than a country, but the island of Singapore is a city state and the government is working on an initiative to create and maintain a 3D model of the entire island nation. The project, started in 2014, is expected to take a total of three years and cost 8 million in Singapore dollars.

This 3D model project was one of the stars at Bentley’s Year in Infrastructure 2015 conference, taking home the prize in the Innovation in Government category of the Be Inspired Awards.

2D and 3D data is captured using various methods of scanning, including oblique imagery, airborne laser scanning, mobile laser scanning and terrestrial scanning. Information is to be updated after the model’s completion using satellite imagery and building information modeling (BIM).

We’ve heard of the “smart city” concept, but Singapore, a small nation that refuses to believe it is small, aspires to be the world’s first “smart nation.”

Kudos to all involved and we need to use this as a model for what can be done.


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Lidar Vision

This is a video depicting what the lidar sensor “sees” as it is being driven through London. It was created by ScanLAB for The New York Times. It looks like as with GPS the automotive market will be the “driver” of the commercialization of this technology.

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Autodesk Invests in Skycatch

skycatchAutodesk has made a series b round investment in Skycatch, a startup UAV company that is focusing on the AEC market. On paper there is great synergy, and if the collaboration results in tighter integration than it is going to be a win for everyone. Time will tell.

Through this investment and alliance, Autodesk and Skycatch will make it easier for designers, engineers, architects, BIM managers, owners and operators to revolutionize how they capture and utilize aerial data. Using high resolution aerial data collected by Skycatch completely transforms the way industrial sites are surveyed, allowing companies to make smarter data-driven decisions, while saving time and drastically reducing costs, while Autodesk ReCap delivers an easy, cost-effective solution to process the collected data.

Autodesk University is quickly approaching. This premiere event will serve as a catalyst for transforming the use of technology within the AEC industry. Be sure to swing by the Skycatch booth (1053) and sign up here for an exclusive opportunity to learn hands-on UAV training and the value of using aerial data to improve your business from our Skycatch UAV specialists. Email for inquiries.

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8,000 Sq. Mile UAV Test Site

20151103_120449_Colorado-DronesColorado has the OK to open a flight test site for unmanned aerial systems — or UAS, more commonly called drones — in the San Luis Valley.

A consortium led by non-profit industry advocate UAS Colorado, the University of Colorado and representatives from six counties got the FAA green light for the 8,000-square-mile test site, hubbed at Leach Airport in the tiny town of Center, northeast of Del Norte.

“The drones will be run through endurance, ease-of-operation and instrument performance tests to evaluate their potential commercial applications,” said CU aerospace engineering sciences professor Brian Argrow.

“It’s a high valley, surrounded by high mountains, so there’s all sorts of terrain for testing,” he said. “For example, you might want to do search and rescue in the mountains, so you want to make sure you have a UAS that will perform at a high altitude.”

The group behind the San Luis Valley site worked with air traffic controllers at the Denver Air Route Traffic Control Center in Longmont to gain FAA authorization for flights up to 15,000 feet in altitude.

Thanks to Bill Emison the Director of Communications for UAS Colorado for the tip.

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Terrestrial Lidar Webinar

vz 400iIn the fields of surveying, engineering, and construction, terrestrial LiDAR has become a valuable tool in the field and in the office. Please join the RIEGL USA terrestrial team on Thursday November, 19, from 1:00 to 2:00 EST to learn about how RIEGL’s terrestrial

LiDAR can help your business reduce costs and time while increasing revenue and productivity. The presentation will be followed by a question and answer segment. Topics will include:

  • VZ series technology
  • RIEGL LiDAR solutions
  • Terrestrial applications
  • Reduction of field time via real-time registration
  • Benefits of using RIEGL terrestrial LiDAR
  • Data exportation
  • How RIEGL terrestrial LiDAR can benefit you

Note: Special end-of-the-year pricing for RIEGL VZ-400 terrestrial scanners will be announced for United States and Canadian attendees only. Be sure to register today to learn more!

Please note: This webinar will only be open to residents of the United States and Canada.

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Lidar News Today – Week of November 10, 2015

email-signature01The Lidar News Today eNewsletter this week features a story on the history of Vexcel, the manufacturer of the digital UltraCam line of metric cameras. From the early days of scanning film, to their eventual acquisition by Microsoft and most recently to the sale of their mapping services operation to Uber it has been quite a ride.

There is also a showcase project on measurement uncertainty and a video on the use of lidar in avoiding on the ground airplane accidents.

If you have not signed up for the eNewsletter please take a moment to provide your email address so we can keep you informed of all the latest news.

Thanks for your support.

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3D Service Providers – What Are You Sellling?

kenKen Smerz at Eco3D has written yet another thought provoking, business focused article for Lidar News. This will get you started.

“Calling all laser scanning service providers out there!! Test time! I need you to answer the following question—and please answer honestly since nobody is going to grade your paper: What are you selling? Naw, I don’t mean the aerial mapping, laser scanning, modeling, BIM, etc.; I am asking a simple question that everyone on your team should be able to answer quickly—what are you selling?

Don’t read any further—take out a fresh piece of paper and write down the answer to this question: Why should a client choose your company over another? Take 5-10 minutes to complete—in fact I challenge you to ask the others in your office to create their own list—but don’t share; not yet.

The full column can be read on the new LN website. Time to give it some serious thought as you look ahead to 2016.


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3D Scanner Report

3Dreport_thumbnailThis 3D Scanner Report was prepared by BuiltWorlds. It includes a number of interviews with a number of the leading service providers as well as a review of a number of scanner manufacturers including FARO, Trimble, Leica Geosystems and Topcon. It includes a discussion of barriers to adoption and selecting the right scanner.

There is a note indicating that the report will be upgraded and will then no longer be free.

Thanks to Ken Smerz at Eco3D for the heads up.

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