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Measuring And Modeling Of A 3 D Road Surface

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2008 Annual Conference & Exposition


Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

Publication Date

June 22, 2008

Start Date

June 22, 2008

End Date

June 25, 2008



Conference Session

Projects & Laboratories in Mechanical ET

Tagged Division

Engineering Technology

Page Count


Page Numbers

13.875.1 - 13.875.10



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Paper Authors

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Pramod Kumar University of Louisiana at Lafayette

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Pavel Ikonomov Western Michigan University

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Suren Dwivedi University of Louisiana-Lafayette

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Alamgir Choudhury Western Michigan University

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Jorge Rodriguez Western Michigan University

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NOTE: The first page of text has been automatically extracted and included below in lieu of an abstract

Laser Scanning and Modeling of a 3D Road Surface


The aim of this research is to create 3D model of an existing road surface and build with special deviation features used for vehicle testing. For the purpose of this project a special scanning system using two laser measuring scanner was designed and built. Data from the two laser scanners, scanning in two mutually perpendicular planes XZ and YZ are recorded and then converted to 3D point cloud data using the scan matching algorithm. From the measured point cloud data, the 3D model of the road is created by the application of special algorithms and data processing. This precise 3D model obtained can then be used for simulating and testing the vehicles’ performance, for their dynamic stability and durability.

Keywords. 3D Road surface model, road profile, laser scanning

1. Introduction

Digitizing of a road surface using images has been tried using multiple sensors [1]. There have been only few researches dealing with road parameters (width, center line, etc) using laser scanning and terrain profile from available databases from the public databases or commercial map providers [2]. There are commercially available 3D scanners and the 3D coordinate measuring machines that can scan individual objects. Though these machines can scan with high accuracy and precision, they are very slow and cannot they are limited to scan objects only within the volume of their workspace. There are several hand held/portable scanning systems that can be used for scanning objects, still they have limit volume range and are not suitable for extended range scanning such as road surface scanned [8]. Commercial companies which offer road surveying services provide data such as pavement distress, rutting, cracks and roughness of the road most of which is image based data [6][7]. To the authors knowledge there is no existing system that can scan and provide precise 3D surface model of the proving ground road surface.

Measuring with 2D laser scanners have been exploited in various ways by the researchers. They have been used to measure the objects and determine their position, monitoring the areas, detect the obstacles for the autonomous vehicles, etc. In addition, they have been used for collision control and have also played the major role in the vehicle guidance system. The laser scanners in this research are used to scan the 3D profile and create the 3D surface model of the road surface.

Two laser scanners can be used to create the 3D model of the indoor environments. The two scanners rotate continuously to record the data which was then processed to get the 3D model [4]. Though this research was able to create the 3D model of the indoor environment, it did not create the surface model of the floor. In another research two laser scanners have also been used together to explore the indoor and outdoor environments in addition to 3D mapping [5]. Similar system were exploited to create the urban model by scanning the horizontal and vertical surface profiles of surrounding buildings. These scanners were triggered with the odometer. For this purpose, the assumption made was that the two scanners are always in the same horizontal plane which is always valid [6]. The ride over bumps, ditches, etc., cause vibration tot the vehicle, as

Kumar, P., & Ikonomov, P., & Dwivedi, S., & Choudhury, A., & Rodriguez, J. (2008, June), Measuring And Modeling Of A 3 D Road Surface Paper presented at 2008 Annual Conference & Exposition, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. 10.18260/1-2--4428

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