3D scanners, one tool – many uses

I find in my personal life that I often end up using something I’ve purchased for more than I intended to in the first place. Such has been the case with furniture, recreational equipment, and even electronics. Unless we’re talking about an item such as a light bulb, you typically don’t use something for one task 100% of the time. In the case of laser scanners, the list of jobs they can do is constantly growing.

Maptek clients usually invest in a scanner for a specific task or department. The original purchase decision may have been justified by desired time savings in general survey tasks, geotechnical analysis, or volumetric validation for contract miners. Those are all very good reasons for buying a scanner, but they don’t usually occupy the system full time.

Figure 1. One tool, many uses

Figure 1. One tool, many uses


Scanners can be something of a Swiss Army Knife. Some of the best extra uses that I’ve seen following the implementation of a scanner have been;

  • Geotechnical analysis, where geotechs perform kinematic and cell mapping
  • Design conformance, where surveyors check that the as-built conforms to the original design
  • Surface-monitoring is another great use of a scanner and one that maybe a lot of people don’t immediately consider. It is now possible to measure surface change with scanning systems as a way of forecasting slope movement.

A good way to ensure your scanner is being fully utilised is by making it available to other departments within your operation, including: surveying, geotech, mine-planning, site-construction, and the list could go on.

If you have any questions regarding this blog or if you would like to discuss if laser scanning is suitable for something you’re working on get in touch with me at clayton.fritz@maptek.co.uk.

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Clayton Fritz
Sales Manager - Mining Solutions, Europe
August 20, 2016

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