Acensium uses laser scanning to make analyzing problems and designing solutions a precise and detailed process. After capturing 3D laser scans of a facility or project site to perform an analysis or design a solution, a tool is needed to consume and navigate this data. The various 3D scans taken to capture the current state of the facility or project site are then assembled into one comprehensive 3D environment. Once a monumental task, navigating and leveraging this 3D environment in design and analysis tasks has become a much more approachable and intuitive task thanks to Navisworks by Autodesk.

Navisworks is a tool used to complement 3D design packages (such as Autodesk Revit, AutoCAD, and MicroStation). Navisworks allows users to open and combine 3D models, navigate around them in real-time and review the model using a set of tools including comments, redlining, viewpoint, and measurements. Acensium chose Navisworks as its primary tool for ‘clash detection’, navigating the assembled environments and other planning and analysis tasks for a number of reasons. The primary reason is the flexibility Navisworks offers. Navisworks provides compatibility with numerous file formats and delivers efficiency with large amounts of data.

One example is a large set of FARO 3D laser scans, stitched together and amounting to over 1 TB (>1000 Gigabytes!) of data. Navisworks allows this dataset to be navigated smoothly, cross-sectioned or manipulated in other ways with ease. Laser Scanners are getting smaller, faster and higher quality each year, meaning the efficiency with large datasets is more important every day. Navisworks also provides ‘auto-clash detection’ without requiring the manual ‘eye-check’ of each model that other tools have always required. Thresholds can be set to identify when models are close or overlapping to ensure possible conflicts are detected and resolved before a single part is fabricated. This same ability provides for process management using periodic scans and analysis.

Navisworks can take the point cloud data from laser scanning to create 3D space and perform clash detection as 3D models are brought in and oriented. This allows conceptual design inside a 3D environment and tailors each design to the actual structure. Structures may weave in and out through complex existing systems, or necessitate the movement of existing components for enhanced efficiency. Navisworks allows the assessment and analysis of these structures and also is a platform to explain this information to decision makers visually.

Overall, Navisworks is a robust tool with many features and capabilities. Complex projects, with many possible structurally conflicting factors in the design or retrofit, require detailed design and analysis to avoid costly delays, work stoppages or refabrication by the manufacturer. Navisworks allows Acensium to mitigate these engineering risks early in the process and continuously monitor project progress ensuring all variables are accounted for.