2021 | 4 min read
Stageport UK, a Glasgow-based production company, is using laser scanners and 3D computer modelling technology to help visualize stage productions. Using PointFuse software, laser scanned data – point clouds – are processed in minutes to create highly accurate 3D models. These models allow production designers to conceptualize ideas within the venue scans and technical staff to visualize touring productions at different venues. Venues can use the imagery to plan for visiting companies and scans, complete with designed elements, can be shared online using PointFuse to reduce and enhance the visualizations. The PointFuse models can be integrated with other types of data and are compatible with mobile and desktop devices and even Virtual Reality applications.
“Early on, we evaluated a number of software applications usually linked to sectors outside of the performing arts,” commented Stephen Roe, Managing Director and founder of Stageport UK. “PointFuse offered an advanced solution for reducing the size of the point cloud data and enhancing its interoperability by converting points to mesh models. In addition, existing links with point cloud editing software, such as Rhino and Veesus, made PointFuse an obvious addition to our workflow.”
So far, Stageport has used PointFuse to create 3D models of three different venues. With seed funding from the Royal Conservatoire (RSC) of Scotland, a world-leading conservatoire of music, drama, dance, production and film based in Glasgow, Stageport aims to create a comprehensive database of event spaces in the UK.
“Compared to more traditional surveying methods, laser scanning provides a fundamental step change in the ease of data capture, the quality and accuracy of measurements and, using PointFuse, the onward processing and ease of use of scanned data,” continued Roe. “The process is relevant to the performing arts as it allows designers and technical managers to import scan data into their CAD software, or export their CAD drawings to the venue scans, to visualize design concepts and troubleshoot production problems.”
Laser scanned data, captured by Stageport and processed using PointFuse, has also been used in a Glasgow School of Art project that centred on the potential of Virtual Reality to re-stage archive performances in cultural settings. The project undertaken by MSc student Nick Bottemley, supported by Stageport, saw the merging of the PointFuse model with archive material found at the Pearce Institute Glasgow. This provided an excellent illustration of how PointFuse mesh models can be applied to the archiving of significant cultural events for future generations to experience.
PointFuse is a powerful modelling engine that delivers an automatic, precise and flexible way of converting the vast point cloud datasets generated by laser scanners or photogrammetry into segmented mesh models. PointFuse uses advanced statistical techniques to create 3D models where individual surfaces can be selected and classified as new layers in the PointFuse environment and exported to IFC and FBX for manipulation in any industry-standard CAD system. These selectable surfaces improve the workflow of design and engineering projects, offering efficiencies that have not been possible when working with point clouds or traditional mesh models.
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