Using Databases for 3D Data Management – From Point Cloud to City Model


Aerial and Terrestrial Laser Scanning

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Hans Viehmann, ORACLE Corporation, Germany,


With the cost of 3D data acquisition constantly falling, many use cases based on the availability of 3D models have become affordable in recent years. This trend gives rise to very large volumes of data being collected which must be managed, processed and analyzed in conjunction with both the associated metadata as well as complementary data such as raster imagery.

Increasingly, geospatial databases are being used for these purposes, which leverage the scalability and information lifecycle management capabilities of standard databases while at the same time allowing the integrated database logic to specifically store and analyze point clouds, TINs, solids, 3D vector data and geo-referenced raster data sets. This enables the derivation of more compact, generalized 3D models from laser scanning data without unnecessary data movement or transformation. The results can then be cast into data models which in turn allow easy data visualization, analysis or dissemination through standards such as CityGML or KML.

In this paper a solution for the end-to-end processing, storage and analysis of point cloud data is presented, which uses an ORACLE database with the additional functionality of the Spatial and Graph option. To illustrate the technical capabilities, two case studies are included – one project is focused on managing asset data in a railway infrastructure company, while the other is a city modeling solution.

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