Heritage Records: How Precision Digital Surveying Is Capturing History.

Jul 24, 2020Article0 comments

Continual advances in digital surveying are expanding the potential of heritage recording and the many ways this impressive data is used.

In 1998, when Surveybase launched, methodology for surveying heritage sites was as complex as the building itself. With only a Leica Total station and digital camera we painstakingly worked our way around and through the building one point at a time. The cost of such lengthy work was hard to justify and sadly the scale of survey reduced to that of more contemporary structures.

Today thankfully everything has changed. We can now survey historic sites in a time-frame once considered impossible. Better still we can maximise the density of measurement to record millions of points per second. We can even survey in multi-colour and deliver high-resolution 3D images.

This incredible capability is the benefit 3D Laser Scanning, a state of the art surveying solution delivering precise measurement and incredible scene imaging.

Once complete the Laser Scan survey is developed to generate a rich Point Cloud using specialist registration software delivering tolerances of +/-3mm. The Point Cloud is an important record in its own right but can be further enhanced to deliver accurate information in 2D plan, elevation and section, or as a 3D BIM Model, 3D Mesh Model or Orthographic image as illustrated below.

Here we see the record of period architectural features processed in 2D AutoCAD.

Point Cloud Survey of Heritage Building, Bath
Point Cloud Survey Of Heritage Elevations, Bath, UK
Point Cloud Survey Of Heritage Elevations, Bristol, UK
Point Cloud Survey Of Heritage Elevations, Queen Square House, Bristol, UK

The following example illustrates how we develop point cloud data into a 3D Model, again carefully detailing the plethora of period features. This is highly skilled work and a testament to the expertise of the Surveybase CAD & BIM Technicians.

3D Laser Scan Survey To Heritage Revit BIM Model, Aberystwyth, UK
3D Laser Scan Survey To Heritage Revit BIM Model, Aberystwyth, UK
The Revit (BIM) Model Interior Of The Old College, Aberystwyth

However, when things get really challenging, we can deploy fine meshing software to deliver an incredible level of accuracy. This is portrayed perfectly in the survey of this Victorian Fountain. Captured fist in high density Laser Scan, processed first to Point Cloud and run through our advanced meshing procedures.

3D Laser Scan Survey To 3D Meshing Model Of Heritage Fountain, Bristol
3D Laser Scan Survey To 3D Meshing Model Of Heritage Fountain, Bristol
3D Laser Scan Survey of Heritage Fountain In Bristol, UK
Close Up Reveals An Incredible Level Of Detail

Benefits include high resolution orthographic images taken directly from the full colour Point Cloud. Orthographic imaging has proven invaluable to conservation projects by helping highlight dilapidation beyond that of standard photogrammetry. The scaled orthographic images below were sliced from a Point Cloud survey and imported to AutoCAD.

3D Laser Scan Survey developing scaled orthographic images
Orthographic Images Of Historic Church, Llandybie, UK

Now with full UAV / LiDAR capability we can go a step further and reach details once hidden from terrestrial Laser Scanning. The sky is literally the limit for heritage surveying.

UAV Survey Over World Heritage City, Bath, UK

Surveybase Limited offer a professional and trusted survey solution geared for large format education, healthcare, commercial and industrial sites. We possess the training, certification and warranties needed to successfully manage major survey commissions.

If you would like to find out more about our TopographicalMeasured Building, Utilities or Scan To BIM survey services please visit the Surveybase website or contact London 02039 066892 or Bath 01225 314370. To obtain a quotation please email your brief to mailto:jordan.king@surveybase.co.uk or use our online quotation portal; Fast Quote.

Surveybase Limited operate throughout the UK along the M4 corridor and surrounding counties including major commercial centres of Cardiff, Bristol, Swindon, Reading to London and the entire South East.

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