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Photogrammetry and Laser Scanning  -  Documenta, uniquely, makes use of the latest photogrammetric and laser scanning technologies, utilizing the most appropriate methodology for each individual project, budget and schedule.

1 - Photogrammetry (noun) [International Scientific Vocabulary]: First appeared in 1875; The science of making reliable measurements (recording) by the use of photographs.

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6008 Metric Camera w/digital back (RolleiMetric) What is Digital Architectural Photogrammetry?  

Digital Photogrammetry is a methodology used to produce precise information, plans and maps directly into CAD through photographic measurement, with the assistance of algorithmic computer restitution. The use of photogrammetry for applications other than aerial mapping is called close-range or architectural photogrammetry

Our professional services with digital close-range photogrammetry revolutionize "existing-conditions" or "as-built" documentations because of the time and cost savings we offer, in addition to remarkable accuracy and reliability.

How does it work? How Does Photogrammetry Work?

Documenta  makes use of calibrated cameras (digital and analog), digitizers, computers and multi-image restitution software. For applications requiring exceptionally high accuracy and reliability, our surveying cameras have built-in grid glass plates (reseau) mounted in front of the film plane.
Images distortions corrected through the reseau in the camera
These glass plates have a series of small crosses, with coordinates calibrated to 1/10 of a micron. We use these coordinates to correct film and optical distortions on the photographs. Then, through powerful computing capabilities, the precise camera position in each picture is calculated by way of several algorithms and statistical evaluation of data quality.

objects in the images and true spatial correlationWe utilize an algorithm called "bundle adjustment", the heart of modern digital photogrammetry and developed for high-precision applications. In it, on a final calculation, all computed positions, distances, coordinates, and levels are simultaneously adjusted according to any additional controls and constraints our experienced analysis indicates appropriate to use, and to a theoretical optical model (central projection theory).

With determination of the precise situation of the camera or cameras in each photograph (camera stations), we can locate the exact position where rays traced from these camera stations meet. Depending on the application, we use a minimum of five rays (five pictures) to ensure the targeted accuracy at any given point. 

Finally, in the process called restitution, extremely homogeneous and precise 3D dimensional data is obtained from digitized points in the photographs, allowing for the production of technical drawings. Further, the CAD/GIS interface allows for the thematic layering of the "as-is" information and further modeling, querying, and visioning when required.

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Our Leica HDS 3000 Scanner
2 - Laser Scanning:
Documenta makes uses of very precise and versatile laser scanning technology to obtain "existing-conditions" measurements. 

Utilizing laser scanning since 2004, Documenta has state-of-the-art Leica HDS scanners, being uniquely specialized in architectural documentation having full and in-house digital photogrammetric and laser scanning capabilities

How Does Laser Scanning Work? 


The Point Cloud looks like a rendering ... Laser scanning technology utilizes pulsing laser beams which systematically sweep over an object to obtain X, Y, Z coordinates of points on it's surface. 

... a 3D rendering ...As the scanned points accumulate, they form what is called a "point cloud" which can be visualized as a computer rendering of the object. All points on a "point cloud" have their accurate 3D position established on a digital coordinate system, and therefore can be visualized from any position and distance.  

... but it's actually made of 3D points - with known XYZ coordinates ... Point clouds can be used directly for point-to-point measurements or for 3D visualization, rendering, modeling, etc. 


... at a closer look, one can see the individual points ... With our experienced architectural and engineering interpretation, they can be converted into 3D models, 2D drawings (elevations, plans, sections, etc.), that are adequate for each different utilization (remodeling, restoration, monitoring, etc.).

... in the surface of the object. - In this example, at each 5mm in each direction The "density" of the scanning can vary depending on the amount of details and the required precision of the documentation.

Click here to see a larger point cloud example. Point Cloud Village Store Facade, at the Yosemite National Park, CA.

What is more important and critical is that we utilize the most adequate technology, or the association of both, to efficiently and economically document the "existing conditions" - the use of either technology is decided solely based on the best solution for each project. 

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