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use of rtabmap with 3D lidars

asked 2016-02-17 14:14:41 -0500

chukcha2 gravatar image

I need to scan and get an accurate 3D model of a small building and its surroundings (trees, etc.). I plan on mounting my sensors on a small drone and fly around the building to scan it. The resolution should be good enough to see details like pipes, chimneys, conduits, etc. My main question is whether rtabmap can be used to achieve it. My second questions is what is the best sensor setup to use with rtabmap to achieve this goal. I have a 3D LiDAR unit (Velodyne VLP-16). Can it be used by RTAB to produce a 3D model? Do I need any additional sensors and why? I can use velodyne_pointcloud node to get sensor_msgs/PointCloud2 point clouds from the lidar. Can rtabmap be used to produce an accurate 3D model from them? Any insight is greatly appreciated. Thank you.

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answered 2016-02-17 16:55:06 -0500

rtabmap relies on detecting features on image data, so it is not really suitable for use with 3D LIDAR data. You could of course mount a stereo or RGB-D camera on your drone and generate a state estimate from that.

Note that your plans are pretty ambitious and generating highly detailed 3D models of buildings using a small drone with somewhat acceptable reliability and accuracy is an application that requires significant effort. You might want to plan for some smaller intermediate goals :)

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Thank you Stefan. I have no experience in this field and your advice is very appreciated. Could you elaborate what makes this task ambitious?

chukcha2 gravatar image chukcha2  ( 2016-02-23 16:05:16 -0500 )edit

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Asked: 2016-02-17 14:14:41 -0500

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Last updated: Feb 17 '16