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Fast, Flexible Scanning Keeps Refinery Reconstruction on Track

A 45,000-square-meter oil refinery in Xiamen City, in the Fujian Province of China, was on track for a major reconstruction in 2022.

In preparation for the project, the owner needed a fully digitized model of existing conditions within the factory interior, a variable-height building that includes a four-story main structure with some segments that extend to seven stories.

Trimble X7 laser scanner

Gathering the data was proving difficult because of the tight timeline, limited accessibility to the plant and pandemic-related labor shortages. The client stipulated that the data gathering had to be complete without any factory downtime, thus limiting data gathering to a maximum of five hours a day. The client also asked that all work be completed in two weeks.

When the delivery date by the original supplier could not meet the refinery schedule needs, MAG Tianhong Science & Technology Development Co., Ltd. (MAG Tianhong), a Beijing-based geoinformation solutions service provider, was awarded this opportunity.

The project gave the organization an opportunity to demonstrate the power and performance of its Trimble® X7, a high-speed 3D laser scanner with integrated HDR imaging and survey-grade self-leveling capabilities. The scanner is highly portable at just 5.8 kilograms, therefore easy for one person to maneuver, which worked especially well with government restrictions due to strict COVID-19 protocols. Like many other businesses, MAG Tianhong needed to do more with fewer people because of covid restrictions. Fortunately, one employee, who lived in an area that wasn’t locked down, was available to perform the work.

According to the MAG Tianhong surveyor who completed the project, “We have been engaged in this work for more than 10 years, but we have never performed the work so fast and easily. The X7 can realize the automatic registration between stations very stably, so I don't have to think about avoiding the failure of registration as I did in the past. I just keep moving the station every 2.5 minutes (while taking panoramic pictures). It is very fast.”

The portability of the Trimble X7 3D laser scanner allowed the operator to maintain a consistent and efficient workflow inside the variable-height factory, easily moving up and down floors and managing the many setups.

Trimble X7 laser scanner

The surveyor said, “It's great that the X7 has a handle, so that I can climb up and down easily. In general, I have completed the task of two people by myself, and the delivery time has been reduced by half. The customer is very satisfied.”

The operator had a near 100% success rate for automatic registration on site. The complete scan of the factory took six days to complete, with a maximum of five hours per day, helping the surveyor complete the scanning project in half the time allotted by the refinery owner.

The Trimble X7 is available through Trimble Geospatial Distribution Partners. Visit our website for Trimble X7 product information and more.