Generating 3D interactive models and data capture for surveying & architectural applications

The recent advances in Aerial 3D mapping tech and software have opened the door for exciting possibilities for the construction industry.Inspire 1

At Eye Sky Media, we produce high quality, accurate 3D models of existing developments, create realistic interactive visualisations and obtain much sought after data for new and existing developments, which until now was time consuming and expensive.

We acquire imagery from the ground and from the air using Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV’s), we convert the images taken into high-resolution, geo-referenced survey-grade orthomosaics, DSMs, DTMs and dense 3D point clouds and can deliver visually perfect results to our customers in a matter of hours, from data acquisition to final result.

The applications for use in the construction industry are many, examples of some are listed below. Files are conveniently output in industry standard formats for GIS software such as AutoCAD.

Applications include:
[x_icon_list][x_icon_list_item type=”empire”]3D ‘Flythrough’ Visualisations[/x_icon_list_item][x_icon_list_item type=”empire”]Contour Line Generation[/x_icon_list_item][x_icon_list_item type=”empire”]Topographical Surveys[/x_icon_list_item][x_icon_list_item type=”empire”]Precision Calculations & Measurements[/x_icon_list_item][x_icon_list_item type=”empire”]Surface Analysis & Editing[/x_icon_list_item][x_icon_list_item type=”empire”]Aerial Time Lapse Photography & Measurements[/x_icon_list_item][x_icon_list_item type=”empire”]Survey Grade Data for BIM / GIS[/x_icon_list_item][x_icon_list_item type=”empire”]Orthomosaics[/x_icon_list_item][x_icon_list_item type=”empire”]Digital Surface & Terrain Models (DSM / DTM)[/x_icon_list_item][x_icon_list_item type=”empire”]Dense 3D Point Clouds[/x_icon_list_item][/x_icon_list]

Data Capture

The first stage we undertake is to capture the raw data in the format of aerial images which contain accurate GPS data.
We use the latest drone tech for this procedure and plot the optimum flight paths for the flight and photography across the site.
We have the required licences granting us permission from the CAA and insurance to undertake this work.

  • We take hundreds of high resolution aerial photographs of the entire site. This process usually takes only a few hours.

  • All the photographs are GPS tagged. The accuracy of the data is to within 1cm.

  • Upon completion, we render out a quick 3D model on-site to confirm we have the required data before leaving.

Data Processing

We process the acquired data using the latest high end 4D modelling software. Our specialist software converts the images obtained into highly precise, timely and customisable results for a wide range of GIS and CAD applications. Additionally we can export custom agricultural maps, objects, flythrough animations and more. 

We generate georeferenced orthomosaics, DSMs, DTMs, contour lines, 3D point clouds and textured mesh models in a variety of industry standard formats for use or further data interrogation or manipulation as required by the client end user.

Case Study One: Construction Site, Plymouth

Location: Plymouth, Devon
Site Area: 25,000 SqM
Project: Former school demolished and site cleared for redevelopment
Challenge: Map site, to provide client with accurate 3D point cloud for architects to integrate into their GIS software for planning.
Output: .dxf / .obj files and sample 3D construction visualisation video of proposed redevelopment

Case Study Two: Church of St. Michael De Rupe

Location: Brentor, Devon
Site Area: 50,000 SqM
Project: Remote church on hill
Challenge: Map site, to document historical landmark and provide client with accurate 3D point cloud for archaeologist site analysis and
Output: .dxf / .obj files and various HD flythrough visualisation videos.


Survey grade high resolution data for GIS (Geographic Information System)

We can offer a solution to create accurate and timely mosaics and models from captured imagery at a cheaper cost than current suppliers of similar Lidar. Output results such as orthomosaics, DSMs, DTMs, contour lines and point clouds will integrate seamlessly into your existing GIS software.

Besides surveys of existing buildings or landscapes, we can also undertake initial site surveys for planning, e.g. initial topographical surveys (accurate to a few cm) or planning for access to and from sites for large vehicles. Such surveys will pick up the access route from the main road right up to the site, this is for an access company to run a swept path analysis, traditionally this may have been surveyed on the ground, or from Photogrammetry (Stereophotography), The level of detail will be to pick up verges and radii. Putting a surveyor on the ground is not always practical so a Aerial survey will save time, money and hassle.

Output formats to integrate with AutoCAD and other 3D modelling software include:

  • .DXF
  • .OBJ
  • .FBY
  • .PLY
  • .XYZ


Data for BIM (Building Information Modelling)

Accurate 3d modelling data for existing buildings (built pre-BIM useage) to tie into a BIM for Operations & Management usage

BIM (building information modelling) offers detailed 3D visualization and the ability to organize huge volumes of data related to buildings. BIM is being implemented throughout the construction industry, and one aspect of it is a 3D model which has associated information tagged on it.

Working with our partners, we not only accurately map and 3D model existing buildings from the data obtained, but can provide other key elements for the BIM, including:

  • 3d modelling
  • Visualisation/renderings/animation
  • Walk-through
  • Virtual reality

Learn more about BIM and how it can help you


Precision Calculations and Measurements

We are able to measure points, lines, surfaces and volumes directly in our software and annotate vector objects so the end user to seamlessly import them into their existing CAD or GIS software package.

Our advanced tools can measure:

  • Length
  • Area
  • Cut & fill volumes
  • Elevation calculations
  • 3D surfaces and slopes

Once all the images are collected, they are processed with a powerful geoprocessing tool,The software can generate a high resolution elevation map and calculate the volume of specific objects to high accuracy comparable with LiDAR or Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS). 


Timelapse / Monitoring

We can create survey-grade orthomosaics, DSMs and dense 3D point clouds almost instantly and even repeat the process in fixed time intervals and analyse results over time to monitor contractors and construction advancements.

We can produce orthomosaics, DSMs, DTMs and point clouds of pits and quarries to calculate volumes of extracted materials, volumes of stockpiles, monitor hot-spots or interested areas of your site, etc.



Using the very latest technology, we can generate contour lines to enable you to manage environmental changes of natural resources and produce precise and timely maps and models for construction, cultural heritage or archaeology sites.

Aerial Mapping Contours

An example of contour line generation (click to view)









Digital Surface Models (DSM)

With the georeferenced images taken with our UAV, it is possible to identify millions of keypoints and calculate their positions. Thanks to the high resolution of the aerial images, we generate point clouds and digital surface models (DSMs) with a sampling distance of 2-4 times that of the RGB images.

  • Surface analysis
  • Volume measurements
  • Contour line generation
  • Breaklinegeneration


3D Point Clouds

The most elementary product of the photogrammetric process is the 3D point cloud: a set of points defined by X, Y, and Z coordinates as well as a colour. Examples of compatible software: ArcGIS, Global Mapper, AutoCAD, MeshLab, 3D Reshaper, Trimble RealWorks Viewer

Possible applications:

  • 3D Interactive Design Visualisations
  • 3D flythroughs
  • Surface editing
  • DSM generation
  • DTM generation
  • Volumetric Measurements
  • Historical documentation  (including:  buildings, terrain, archaeology & analysis)


Landscape and Visual Impact Assessments (LVIA)

We can provide uniquely detailed Landscape and Visual Impact Assessments (LVIAs). LVIAs are generally produced for rural developments that may have a visual impact on elements of the natural landscape or nearby heritage assets. They are a common feature of planning applications for wind turbine construction or other larger, infrastructure developments.

Whilst standard LVIAs produce wire-line line-of-sight diagrams associated with photography from fixed points, we are able to offer fully three-dimensional digital interactive modelling of viewpoints from any location and angle and quantifiable analyses of visual impact.

Rather than merely stating that something is visible or not, our analyses can provide precisely how visible a development will be at a certain distance (as a percentage), and provide a prediction of visibility under different weather conditions. As we use fully interactive 3D models of any development, our analyses can also determine what elements will be visible from a given point or distance.