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BIM and Reality Capture: Techniques, approaches and use cases with Florian FAUCONNET

BIM and Reality Capture: Techniques, approaches and use cases with Florian FAUCONNET

Hello Florian, you are a reality capture specialist and co-founder of ATFF in Annecy, can you tell us about your professional career and how you got started in laser scanning?

Working for ten years in the Autodesk network, I have seen these software tools develop for many years. After a Canadian experience where I saw the very extensive use of these tools, we decided Adrien TRUWANT and myself to create a structure dedicated to this new profession, reality capture which becomes a centerpiece to no longer start a BIM project with a blank page.


In which cases and on what types of projects do you work? Could you give us a few of them?

Our biggest projects of more than 50.000 m2 surveyed, are in the area hospital ou industrial. These types of clients have a constant need to document their assets and facilities. It goes without saying that working in a hospital or in a petrochemical plant does not have the same constraints for survey teams. Our know-how has enabled us to define specific acquisition processes that adapt to each of their environments.


Why is laser scanning used and what are its use cases in the construction industry?

ATFF intervenes in the field of reality capture in order to document the existing. We use laser scanners for the interior of the buildings as well as the facades. The data collected in the field is then assembled in different software to create a unique 3D point cloud type model. In the context of the creation of digital BIM models, point clouds make it possible to avoid traditional manual surveys that are not very productive and little in line with BIM: modern, powerful and loaded with information. These deliverables will then be easily usable and viewable by all stakeholders.


Could you tell us about the underground network survey, aerial inspection, photogrammetry and mobile survey?

Le mobile laser survey ou Mobile Mapping in English is a high performance outdoor survey technology combining image capture with GPS positioning and precise spatial orientation. This practice allows exact and exhaustive data collection with an optimized acquisition time and a level of precision of the order of a centimeter. This system is dedicated to real-time 3D mapping from a moving vehicle.

The underground network survey is a complete non-destructive investigation solution for the detection and positioning of buried networks. This innovative multichannel geo-radar is specially dedicated to localization and mapping. Coupled with an acquisition solution mobile laser, this makes it possible to model on a large scale all the underground networks as well as the external infrastructures.

Le drone him, is used to makeaerial inspection and photogrammetry Aerial for roofs. As soon as you want to make a visual, thermal or topographic inspection, the drone is the ideal, precise and secure tool. The principle is to recover a maximum of images in order to be able to post-process them later to generate a cloud of points which will represent, in 3D, the survey of reality.


Laser scanning is becoming more and more democratic in parallel with the adoption of BIM, how do you explain this? Is there a relationship between the two? Is it rather the B, the I or the M of BIM?

In my opinion, the laser survey service as offered by ATFF is necessary in a construction or renovation project. It makes it possible to deliver a precise point cloud that can be shared between all those involved in the project. To answer your question, our services are linked to the M (Modeling) of BIM.


You recently worked at the Aiguilles hospital and carried out more than 1200 scans in 15 days, what was your mission and how did you organize yourself?

A hospital is constantly developing to respond to changes in our society. As a result, the project was the transformation of one of the areas of the establishment to accommodate more short-stay beds and improve offices. The plans for this hospital were no longer up to date. ATFF's 3D laser survey technique made it possible to provide a global response to future renovations and at the same time to be able to create a digital BIM model of this hospital. The main constraint was to evolve around the patients. The team organized to scan rooms during meal times and some hallways at night to avoid traffic. Using Faro Focus X130 laser scanners, two technicians from ATFF captured the entire 20.000m2 surface in hourly rotations.


How to go from a cloud of points and classic 2D plans to a digital model? How do you do it?

Creating a digital model is not only the fact of repositioning the elements of the structure in space. For each modelization, it is necessary to define a Specifications of what we want to model. Level of detail chosen, you have to work by sector. By creating a box on a single level, or even, on a single element, it is already much easier to model.

Unlike a 2D plan, the point cloud allows positioning 100% of the information captured by our teams. The exact height of the ceilings, outlets, the positioning of the ventilation ducts passages, etc. This BIM digital model then allows the development of quality collaborative work. Thus, in order to avoid problems in the field which generates additional costs, this model must be as accurate as possible from its creation.


What are your tips for better reconstitution of a structure using laser scanning?

To create a digital model, you must first know the methodology for using point clouds. For each delivery we make, we strive to advise our customers to make sure they have the right tools and working methods in their hands. For example, knowing how to organize these files or work with suitable material.

A hard disc SSD is mandatory and going through the local network is to be avoided because this will only slow down your own workstation as well as all the connections of other collaborators. ATFF's support to its customers in no way removes the fact that to model from a point cloud you must also be properly trained to learn the methods and subtleties that are specific to each architecture software. .


One last word ?

Reality capture offers extraordinary possibilities for the building world. Software and workstations are becoming mature for these new tools of laser surveys and photogrammetry. This makes it possible to approach a project completely differently by avoiding site round trips.

This approach fits perfectly into a BIM approach for a digital model. 2017 is going to be a fantastic year for our digital construction industry.

The teams of remain at your disposal to document your projects thanks to our know-how in reality capture.

A question to Florian? Feel free to leave a comment !


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