Wednesday, February 2, 2011


Point Cloud Feature Extraction for Civil 3D Now Available!
Full review will be discussed in part 2 of HDS in Civil 3D.
Downloads and videos currently available.

The last 11 years I have scanned and created HDS deliverables with Leica HDS scanners and software. 3D laser scanners are used in the field to capture existing conditions. The technology is still new to some, but for the early adopters it is a common workflow. As firms become familiar with this technology they often contract the scanning and look to benefit from the deliverables. To do this in the past firms were required to invest with 3rd party software.

It is exciting to see that Autodesk has released a new feature in Civil 3D 2011 that provides the ability to import HDS data directly into AutoCAD based products. This option is also available for Civil 3D 2010 subscriptions users.

Introduction to importing Leica HDS point clouds directly into Civil 3D.
Part 1 of 2
Leica point clouds are stored in an IMP format, and must be exported from Cyclone into a PTS format. Once this is accomplished, we are ready to import the point cloud into Civil 3D.

*Note: Any Point Clouds can be imported into Civil 3D if converted to an ASCII file format.

Once the point cloud is displayed, review it for pertinent data that was collected in the field. Moving the cursor over the point cloud displays elevation data.

Point Cloud color, like all Civil 3D objects are controlled with styles. The styles below were developed from Scaled Color Intensity and True Color (RGB).


True color (image required)

Elevation map
**Classifications color scheme, have no affect on HDS Point Clouds. They are used in combination with LIDAR Data only.

For available options select the point cloud and locate the ribbon. To modify point density, change the slider to the right for more points.

**Note: To provide quicker response time with Point Cloud data it is encouraged to set regenauto to off.

The ability to snap to points in cloud is very useful.

The future of Point Clouds in Civil 3D
Full review will be discussed in part 2 of HDS in Civil 3D. Downloads and videos currently available.
Point Cloud Feature Extraction for AutoCAD Civil 3D Now Available


  1. Hi Chad,

    Is it possible for you to add RSS feed for posts to your blog please?
    I hadn't actually heard of/seen your blog before and it looks like there is a lot of Civil3D tips to read.

    Keep up the great work!

  2. Seamonkey Madness,

    I have RSS Feeds on the lower right side of my page. I believe you can also connect in the top left menu by clicking follow. Please let me know if you are looking for a specific type of link and I would be happy to set it up for you.

    Hope you continue to enjoy my blog.