Thursday, February 2, 2012

Point Cloud Feature Extraction for Revit

Site/Building Footprint Extraction
Autodesk Labs has just released free software to extract Revit data from point clouds. I was reviewing this software to manage, display and extract building data from point clouds. As I was doing this I came across this impressive video on extracting Site/Building Footprints. Autodesk Labs video. To sum this up with one word UNBELIEVABLE!

Remember when Autodesk Labs released Point Cloud Feature Extraction for AutoCAD Civil 3D? (now retired) I would select the point cloud to build a surface and it included all of the trees and utilities. The TIN could not be used for anything.
So I immediately put this new Revit tool to the test. Keep reading I never thought I would use REVIT to build a surface and export it to CIVIL 3D.

Lets get started; Open REVIT and insert the Point Cloud from a simple PTS file.



 Click Feature Extraction from the new TAB and click Site Surface.            
Position the point cloud in the front view like the video displayed and select the ground features.                                                                                                                                                                                               

Image shows resulting point cloud with contours. Notice the wall in the bottom left, and the trees on the site. It automatically excluded these objects. Review the front view below it did not include the trees

 Front view of the surface to show walls and trees were not included.

Couple other helpful tools provide the ability to crop and un-crop the surface. The picture below show the command to turn the point cloud display off.  

 Once the point cloud was turned off I used the Navisworks plug-in to export the surface to Navisworks. 

This command is very simple to use and provides an incredible tool for Revit users to build quick topographical surfaces, but how do we get this surface into Civil 3D?
I will provide steps to utilize this surface in Civil 3D later in the week and will link a video to this process soon.