Resi - Transitioning from 2D to 3D with terrestrial laser scanning
Author: Simon Hall
Resi is an all-in-one architectural service offering surveying, design, planning support, building regulation packages, finance, and introductions to vetted contractors and specialists.
Resi may have started small, but they’ve quickly risen to become the UK’s leading architectural service. Since 2016, they’ve helped over 4000 homeowners nationwide, and they’re only getting bigger! Founded by two of the UK’s foremost female tech entrepreneurs - Jules Coleman & Alexandra Depledge - Resi boasts over 120 employees, with in-house architects, surveyors, technicians, and even mortgage brokers.
Alex and Jules envisioned Resi as an all-in-one platform that could help modernise the often tedious process of improving or building a home, having both been inspired by their nightmare projects. They partnered with two experienced architects - Nick Stockley and Rich Morgan - who brought on board over ten years of industry experience. By combining this architectural know-how with innovative tech solutions, Resi came into the world, ready to make a big splash in the residential sector.
“We have a large variety of projects at Resi. From small flats in Central London, to large country houses with a lot of land. Generally, we work with tight timeframes. All of our projects are residential.” Lisa Westmacott - Head of Pre-Design, Resi
Transitioning from 2D to 3D
Resi began working in 2D, creating floor plans and sections from hand-drawn measured building surveys to inform the design process. As the company expanded, the demand for measured surveys increased, and Resi took the opportunity to investigate ways in which they could develop and enhance their surveying capabilities.
As a business, Resi embraced innovation and saw an opportunity to transition into a 3D workflow for design and surveying; this is where the partnership with Leica Geosystems was forged.
“We’re creating a new way for people to transform their homes and always want to be challenging ourselves to provide the best possible service for our customers. We’re never afraid to think outside the box or get experimental!” Heather Shaw - Communications Manager, Resi
Choosing the right equipment
Since 2017, Resi has worked on over 4,000 separate projects, and with so many customers, they needed to find a way to speed up data capture for their measured surveys. While the pursuit for greater productivity is instigated by increased demand, Resi was also keen to enhance deliverables and realise the highest levels of accuracy in their work, thereby mitigating risk throughout the project journey.
Through research and introductions to new processes, Resi approached Leica Geosystems to aid them in their transition from traditional measurement techniques to digital data capture and 3D laser scanning. Resi has since invested in a fleet of Leica RTC360 3D laser scanners, combined with the powerful Leica Cyclone REGISTER 360 post-processing office software, providing the perfect solution for their project work.
Leica Geosystems aided Resi in implementing their new products, providing training, technical support and consultation to help Resi optimise their workflows.
The RTC360 3D reality capture solution allowed Resi to document and capture their projects in 3D, with precision laser measurements forming a point cloud – essentially capturing the reality of any site and subject matter in high definition with unparalleled speed.
The Leica RTC360 3D Laser Scanner automatically preregisters point cloud data in the field to quickly conduct quality control checks, improve productivity and allow Resi to make better-informed decisions on site.
As well as measuring up to 2 million points per second with its lasers, the RTC360 laser scanner captures enriching High-Dynamic Range (HDR) imagery as a panoramic view in one minute, augmenting the point cloud to provide real-world visualisations from which measurements are taken.
Each scan position merges seamlessly to the next by way of the RTC360’s unique Visual Inertial System (VIS), which uses feature tracking technology paired with an integrated inertial measurement unit providing both a heading and relative positioning in real-time. Five VIS cameras track movement and position each scan relative to one another, thus building a true to life 3D visualisation of every site directly in the field; all controlled by the Leica Cyclone FIELD 360 mobile-device app running on a smartphone or tablet computer (iOS or Android).
By working with the Cyclone FIELD 360 app to build links while the teams scan, Resi save time processing the data in the office as the scans are already positioned relatively. GeoTags are added to the captured scans to help illustrate key features and mark up areas for collaborative working, providing greater understanding of each projects unique challenges.
“No other solution we looked at seemed to marry so well with speed and accuracy. It was incredibly useful to have a 3D ‘digital twin’ of the property to reduce the need to ever re-survey when collecting measurements by hand. Our customers also really like seeing their property in 3D. Using the Leica solutions means we can carry out more surveys in one day, and they are much more accurate than hand-collected measurements.” Lisa Westmacott - Head of Pre-Design, Resi
Resi is now exploring dynamic data capture with the Leica BLK2GO handheld imaging laser scanner. Weighing less than 1kg and mapping at over 400,000 points per second, the BLK2GO mobile solution provides Resi with the ability to create accurate 3D representations of their projects while they walk through the property. By combining LiDAR SLAM (Simultaneous Localization and Mapping) technology and the feature tracking VIS, Leica Geosystems has created a GrandSLAM solution that facilitates centimetre precision at a range of up to 25 metres. Data capture in awkward spaces, over and under objects, through rooms and doorways, around corners, and up and down stairwells is easily measured at walking pace.
A view to the future
With the implementation of the RTC360, Resi was able to quickly and efficiently cross-check their survey information without having to re-visit the project sites, therefore improving efficiency and reducing costs on travel to and from job sites with flexible working opportunities. Leica Geosystems continue to support Resi to help develop their business strategy around 3D laser scanning. The company has a rapid growth strategy, with future investment planned in the market-leading technologies.
“Leica Geosystems helps us do in hours what would have taken days. It means our surveying team can be more productive and keep up with customer demand. We plan on continuously expanding the company and continue to use 3D laser scanners. We have enjoyed using Leica Geosystems products. The software has helped create a seamless workflow. We are looking forward to seeing more improvements and new technology in the future.” Lisa Westmacott - Head of Pre-Design, Resi
The Chief Executive Office of Resi, Alex Depledge, was so impressed with the RTC360 solution that she began a project in her own home to scan and capture the space in 3D to enable their team to design the perfect space for her.