Posts

District Attorney lauds use of Leica Geosystems 3D laser scan data as demonstrative forensic evidence in homicide trial

(Norcross, Ga., 03 September 2009)  District Attorney Joe Mulholland of the South Georgia Judicial Circuit added yet another legal case reference to the growing number of U.S. court cases in which Leica Geosystems 3D laser scan data has been admitted into evidence when he successfully proffered and tendered to the jury a visually compelling Leica TruView.

During the murder trial of Antonio Jerome Greenlee in Decatur County Superior Court, witness and crime scene investigator, Andy Forte of the Thomas County Sheriff’s Department, used Leica TruView to virtually place the jury at the crime scene and to show them how the homicide could have occurred.  The case stems from the homicide of 21-year-old Ebony Clarke of Bainbridge, GA, who was shot and killed on August 12th, 2008, during a street altercation between two men.

Leica TruView is a free, web-enabled panoramic point cloud viewer that allows users to view, pan, zoom, measure and markup the incredibly rich point cloud captured by the Leica ScanStation 3D laser scanner.  The Leica ScanStation allows investigators to first photograph and then make millions of measurements of a crime scene in just a few minutes thus “freezing the scene in time” forever.  A Leica TruView data set can then be generated in minutes after scanning for briefings or analysis or as in this case as a jury exhibit.

“The jury really, really liked it and we had jurors comment afterwards about how effective it was” said District Attorney Mulholland.  “We not only used the TruView to support Andy’s testimony, but the judge then allowed Andy to show it again during my direct examination of other witnesses as I asked them questions about where they were standing or where the shooter was.  TruView is basically a high-tech picture.  It is not testimony.  It is offered as an exhibit and demonstrative evidence.  This seemed to play well with the judge.  The Defense did not object and I think that they thought the same thing.”

Mulholland went on to say that after the trial the judge called him to the bench and commented on how effective the use of the Leica TruView was and encouraged him to use it again.  “We certainly plan on doing so.  The scanning software was absolutely fantastic” said the D.A. The judge also contacted Thomas County Sheriff R. Carlton Powell to thank him for his agency’s assistance with the case and to compliment him on the professional nature of the exhibits generated by his investigators.   Sheriff Powell was instrumental in bringing ScanStation technology to Georgia law enforcement and has made it available to the Georgia Bureau of Investigation and other agencies as a courtesy.

“The Leica ScanStation has been the choice of police and sheriff’s departments, state patrols, crime laboratories, prosecutor’s offices, coroner and medical examiners and tribal justice agencies” said Tony Grissim the Public Safety and Forensic Account Manager for Leica Geosystems.   “The high volume of traffic we are seeing on our web site at www.leica-geosystems.us/forensic is an indicator to us that word is really getting around within the law enforcement community.”
Leica Geosystems – when it has to be right

With close to 200 years of pioneering solutions to measure the world, Leica Geosystems products and services are trusted by professionals worldwide to help them capture, analyze, and present spatial information. Leica Geosystems is best known for its broad array of products that capture accurately, model quickly, analyze easily, and visualize and present spatial information.

Those who use Leica Geosystems products every day trust them for their dependability, the value they deliver, and the superior customer support. Based in Heerbrugg, Switzerland, Leica Geosystems is a global company with tens of thousands of customers supported by more than 3’500 employees in 28 countries and hundreds of partners located in more than 120 countries around the world. Leica Geosystems is part of the Hexagon Group, Sweden.

For further information please contact:

Leica Geosystems Inc.
Andre Ribeiro
Director of Marketing
Atlanta, GA 30092
Phone:   +1 (770) 326-9557
Fax:         +1 (770) 447-0710
Andre.ribeiro@leicaus.com
www.leica-geosystems.us/forensic

Quantapoint Announces Integration of Laser Scan Data Into Intergraph SmartPlant 3D(TM)

PITTSBURGH, PA — 06/15/09 — Quantapoint (http://www.quantapoint.com) — provider of laser scanning technology and services that help companies achieve Zero-Defect Projects™ — today announced that Quantapoint Laser Models™ may be accessed directly in Intergraph SmartPlant 3D using QuantaCAD 9.0. QuantaCAD enables 3D laser scan data to be accessed as high-definition Quantapoint Laser Models™ (not fuzzy “point clouds”) and photo-realistic Laser Images™ directly within design software.

QuantaCAD provides a number of useful capabilities to SmartPlant 3D users to enable them to compare and validate CAD models, visualize proposed modifications for design and constructability reviews, and identify and correct potential constructioninterferences. Some of the capabilities include:

-- Direct Integration: A separate "point server" is not required due to the smaller size of the Laser Models. -- State Manager: Store and recall the laser data state (loaded Laser Models, Laser Images and views) so users can quickly resume work instead of having to manually reload laser scan data. -- Tag Points: Create and edit tag points (specific 3D locations, such as tie points) directly in the laser data so users can access consistent design starting and ending points across the team. -- Clipping and Slicing: Clip laser data to temporarily hide view obstructions or slice it to create a section of laser data. -- Demolition: Demolish areas of the facility being removed in the laser data to remove it from view. -- Flexible Licensing: Quantapoint software are now integrated and may be licensed monthly for standalone or network usage, providing more flexibility based on project or program needs.

By using QuantaCAD to put reality on the desktop and in design software, clients have typically been able to reduce remodeling time by 85% (by using Laser Models instead of CAD remodeling or as a basis to remodel), decrease design time by 60% (by accessing more complete and clear Laser Models and Laser Images for design) and cut rework from design clashes by 85% (by correcting clashes between the Laser Models and the new CAD design). If you are interested in finding out more about accessing laser data in SmartPlant 3D using QuantaCAD 9.0 or would like a demonstration, visit www.quantapoint.com/qp/contact or e-mail info@quantapoint.com.

Image Available: http://www2.marketwire.com/mw/frame_mw?attachid=1002516

Additional information, please contact:

James McGill
VP of Marketing
Quantapoint, Inc.
Telephone: 412-653-0100, x-200
E-mail: jmcgill@quantapoint.com

NIST’s LIDAR May Offer Peerless Precision in Remote Measurements

Source: http://www.nist.gov/public_affairs/techbeat/tbx20090526_lidar.htm

By combining the best of two different distance measurement approaches with a super-accurate technology called an optical frequency comb, researchers at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) have built a laser ranging system that can pinpoint multiple objects with nanometer precision over distances up to 100 kilometers. The novel LIDAR (“light detection and ranging”) system could have applications from precision manufacturing lines on Earth to maintaining networks of satellites in perfect formation, creating a giant space-based platform to search for new planets.

LIDAR transmits light through the air and analyzes the weak reflected signal to measure the distance, or range, to the target. NIST’s new LIDAR, described in Nature Photonics,* has a unique combination of capabilities, including precision, rapid updates from multiple reference points at the same time, and minimal “measurement ambiguity.” The system can update measurements to multiple targets simultaneously every 200 microseconds. Measurement ambiguity in a LIDAR system is due to the fact that, if the target is at long range from the instrument, the system can’t distinguish between two different distances that are multiples of its “ambiguity range.” The new NIST LIDAR has a comfortably large ambiguity range of at least 1.5 meters—large enough to check the coarse distance with widely available technologies such as GPS.

No other ranging system offers this combination of features, according to the new paper. NIST’s LIDAR could enable multiple satellites to maintain tight spacing and pointing while flying in precision formations, acting as a single research instrument in space, the paper states. Formation flying has been proposed as a means to enhance searches for extraterrestrial planets, enable imaging of black holes with multiple X-ray telescopes on different satellites, and support tests of general relativity through measurements of satellite spacing in a gravitational field. The new LIDAR could enable continuous comparisons and feedback of distances to multiple reference points on multiple satellites. There also may be applications in automated manufacturing, where many parts need to fit together with tight tolerances, according to Nate Newbury, the principal investigator.

NIST’s LIDAR design derives its power from combining the best of two different approaches to absolute distance measurements: the time-of-flight method, which offers a large ambiguity range, and interferometry, which is ultraprecise. The LIDAR relies on a pair of optical frequency combs, tools for precisely measuring different colors (or frequencies) of light. The frequency combs used in the LIDAR are based on ultrafast-pulsed fiber lasers, which are potentially smaller and more portable than typical combs that generate laser light from crystals. The two combs operate at slightly different numbers of pulses per second. Pulses from one comb are reflected from a moving target and a stationary reference plane. The second comb serves as precise timer to measure the delay between the reflections returning from the target and from the reference plane. A computer calculates the distance between the target and the reference plane by multiplying the time delay by the speed of light.

* I. Coddington, W.C. Swann, L. Nenadovic and N.R. Newbury. Rapid, precise absolute distance measurements at long range. Nature Photonics. Published online May 24, 2009.

Media Contact: Laura Ost, laura.ost@nist.gov, (303) 497-4880