If you want to capture the real shape of a building in a digital form, it is best to use 3D laser scanning. This technology enables us to quickly transfer information concerning the geometry of objects with centimeter-level (or, if needed, millimeter-level) accuracy. As a result, we get what is called a point cloud. Point cloud is a set of separate points defining the location (in a pre-defined system) and the intensity of signal reflection.
Furthermore, it is also possible to add information regarding the real colors of a given object. Once this cloud is filtered (false data is removed, e.g. reflection in the glass or moving objects) and optimized (the number of points is reduced), it is a perfect basis for creating a 3D model both in a form of mesh and BIM model.
If you want to create a 3D light mapping, it is essential to get to know the geometry of a given object. The better you get to know the geometry, the more possibilities you have. Based on the point cloud you can create the 3D model of an object. Depending on your needs, you can either create a simplified model with information regarding its main features only (such as the location of walls, windows etc.) or a very detailed one, including precise information about the architecture and fitting. During the process of modeling you can chose how precise your model will be. In case you need to increase the number of details in the future, you can always come back to the point cloud and go for more detailed modeling.
3D model created out of a point cloud is very accurate, which is especially important in terms of light mapping, e.g. when the position of windows in elevation differs and when the knowledge of cornice dimensions makes it easier to light it better. This model has a defined coordinate system and can be placed in either national or local system. Thanks to the knowledge of the position of a given object in relation to the surrounding it is possible to precisely design the location of projectors and to prepare a visualization on this stage of designing.
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