Clash detection and reporting with 3D Laser Scanning - Part 3

3D laser scanning techniques are used in a variety of industries to ensure safe introduction of new components, improve industrial processes and assist with modular installation. In part 3 of our Clash detection and Reporting with 3D Laser Scanning blog we discuss how 3D laser scanners are used to optimize conveyor belts and railway clearance surveys as well as self-propelled modular transportation systems.

05 April 2016

Industrial Processes

Another potential use for clash detection are industrial processes such as automation of machinery or conveyor belts. Components can be precisely surveyed using 3D laser scanning and the process simulated prior to actually running the machinery or conveyor belts.  Again this is used to determine if there are any clashes along the route.

This process might include scanning an existing piece of equipment on an assembly line and simulating the addition of a new element by adding a CAD model to the scan data and clash checking its movements against the existing components.

Fig 8: 3D laser scan of a production assembly with a CAD element being simulated for clash detection

Railway Clearance surveys

Another industry that can benefit from clash checking is railway transportation. Clearance checks can be carried out to ensure safe introduction of new models of locomotive or carriages as well as for new tunnels to ensure the necessary clearance for operation. Intertek can do this by laser scanning the tunnel and train then simulating the train’s  route on the tracks. A clearance boundary can be set for the train and the simulation will run the train through a tunnel or along a route to determine any clashes or near misses.

Fig 9: 3D laser scan and a tunnel being clash checked for clearance

Module installation

The movements of very large objects on the back of SPMT’s (self-propelled modular transporter), or low loaders, through tight gaps can also be pre-determined using 3D laser scanning and clash detection routines. Examples might include components for mining or windfarms that have to route their ways through small towns to their final destination. The video below shows the landing simulation for a large LNG (liquefied natural gas) module. It is simulated being moved in along its installation route and clash checked against adjoining modules before the real landing is attempted. This allow time for any potential clashes to be removed thus speeding up the process and improving safety.

Fig 10: Simulating arrival of large component at an LNG plant by 3D Laser scanning the install route and component then clash checking.

Stuart has been working in precise surveying, laser scanning and metrology for over 10 years in Australia, SE Asia and Africa. He has started-up the Australian operations for Intertek increasing our global reach to this region. Intertek Surveying Services (formerly Hi-Cad) are a global leader in dimensional control and laser scanning.