University of Oulu

Ilpo Niskanen, Matti Immonen, Tomi Makkonen, Pekka Keränen, Pekka Tyni, Lauri Hallman, Mikko Hiltunen, Tanja Kolli, Yrjö Louhisalmi, Juha Kostamovaara, Rauno Heikkilä, 4D modeling of soil surface during excavation using a solid-state 2D profilometer mounted on the arm of an excavator, Automation in Construction, Volume 112, 2020, 103112, ISSN 0926-5805,

4D modeling of soil surface during excavation using a solid-state profilometer mounted on the arm of an excavator

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Author: Niskanen, Ilpo1,2; Immonen, Matti1; Makkonen, Tomi1;
Organizations: 1Faculty of Technology, Structures and Construction Technology, University of Oulu, P.O. Box 4000, FI-90014 Oulu, Finland
2Public Works Research Institute, 1-6 Minamihara, Tsukuba, Ibaraki 300-2621, Japan
3Faculty of Information Technology and Electrical Engineering, Circuits and Systems Research Unit, University of Oulu, P.O. Box 7300, FI-90014 Oulu, Finland
4Faculty of Technology, Intelligent Machines and Systems, University of Oulu, P.O. Box 4200, FI-90014 Oulu, Finland
Format: article
Version: accepted version
Access: open
Online Access: PDF Full Text (PDF, 1.4 MB)
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Language: English
Published: Elsevier, 2020
Publish Date: 2022-02-10


The aim of this research is to create a 4D point cloud map from a trench through a solid-state 2D profilometer. The profilometer is integrated with an 8.5-ton medium-size excavator’s machine control system with pose calculation. Accordingly, the point cloud was transformed to a work coordinate system. We used a recently developed pulsed time-of-flight laser light detection and ranging profilometer, which makes possible simultaneous depth measurements to 256 directions in an angle range of ±20° and measurement range from 1 m to 8 m with a frame rate of 25 frames per second under sunlight conditions (≈50 Klux). The analysis is based on a 4D map, which consists of 3D data (XYZ) and intensity information. The XYZ coordinates give the position of an object, and the intensity data can be used to roughly identify materials and recognise surface markings, such as texts. An analysis of the results shows that the detection accuracy of the profilometer is better than ±10 mm. The main advantages of our method are accuracy, high update rate, compact size, real-time measurement and a construction without moving parts. Our technique has a great potential in construction applications, where accurate measurements of a surface shape are needed.

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Series: Automation in construction
ISSN: 0926-5805
ISSN-E: 1872-7891
ISSN-L: 0926-5805
Volume: 112
Article number: 103112
DOI: 10.1016/j.autcon.2020.103112
Type of Publication: A1 Journal article – refereed
Field of Science: 213 Electronic, automation and communications engineering, electronics
111 Mathematics
212 Civil and construction engineering
114 Physical sciences
Funding: We gratefully acknowledge funding from the Business Finland, (4294/31/2018).
Copyright information: © 2020 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved. This manuscript version is made available under the CC-BY-NC-ND 4.0 license