Ragan-Smith Acquires New Matterport Pro2 System

Our Reality Capture Group recently expanded their capabilities through the acquisition of a new 3D imaging system. The Matterport Pro2 system is a short range 3D camera system that can aid in creating virtual environments and Google Street-view like websites. This acquisition has also allowed us to beging working with Leica Geosystems and Matterport to integrate the Pro2 with Leica’s BLK360 laser scanner. This Beta program is designed to connect both sensors through a single control system for data capture. By combining the best of each system, Ragan-Smith will continue to push the boundaries of what is possible in capturing and modeling as-built environments at various levels of accuracy.

“We are really excited about this expansion of our capture capabilities. Since the inception of the Reality Capture Group here at Ragan-Smith, we have endeavored to continually add new sensors and mapping systems to the list of tools that we are able to leverage for the benefit of our clients. The Pro2 fits perfectly into this mission by enabling fast data capture and visual communication without requiring engineering grade services. We have also expanded our web services to host many of the 3D Spaces that we are now creating for our clients.”

– Sam Billingsley, Director – Reality Capture Group

Visit our 3D Space Page for sample data.

Sam Billingsley Presents at IPLSA Conference

Sam Billingsley, Director of the Reality Capture Group here at Ragan-Smith was asked to present at the 61st Annual Illinois Professional Land Surveyors Association held this past February in Springfield, Illinois. Sam presented in the Reality Capture Workflow track along with Tom Bryant & Kelly Harris of Seiler Instrument, Matt Schrader of Hanson Professional Services, and Dave Kuxhausen of Woolpert. The focus of Mr. Billingsley’s presentation was using point clouds in the Trimble Business Center software suite (TBC). I can’t thank Seiler enough for the invitation to speak,” said Mr. Billingsley. “This was my first time attending IPLSA and it was rather impressive. I was able to attend some other sessions (which were quite informative) and met a lot of other TBC users that are getting into reality capture data.”

Point Clouds in TBC

For a more thorough look at TBC, check out his “Hands on Review” for SPAR3D in this month’s newsletter!

UAV Program Update – 2017 (End of Year)

Ragan-Smith began 2017 with the goal of determining whether or not Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) or drones in most peoples vocabulary, were ready for production work. We performed extensive tests in late Winter that were detailed in a post on UAV Accuracy and another on UAV Volumetric Surveying. To sum those tests up, we were not very happy with the results. To be sure, they demonstrated that there were some limited applications for which UAVs were well suited. However, we weren’t ready to take those services to market given the accuracy level that most clients expect when they come to Ragan-Smith for services.

However, technology is ever developing. While it’s been less than a year since those initial tests we felt compelled to revisit the subject. Despite the earlier results, we never quit testing UAV systems in-house. Between hard learned lessons in best-practices for data collection and improvements in the associated hardware and software systems Ragan-Smith is now using UAVs for data collection on an almost weekly basis. The point of launching a Reality Capture Group at Ragan-Smith was to be able to bring the most up to date technology to bear on every project so that we were always using the most efficient system available to capture the needed data to serve our client’s needs. Adding UAVs to our existing lineup of traditional survey technologies, laser scanning, and mobile LiDAR has made for an exciting 2017. I can’t wait to see what 2018 has in store for us!

For a full review of our current UAV program’s accuracy and methodology check out this article on

BIMForum Fall Symposium Introduces New LOD Standards for BIM

The BIMForum announced the release of the latest Level of Detail (LOD) standards for Building Information Models (BIM) at the Fall Symposium which was held in Dallas, TX November 6-8. This year’s symposium was a group effort by the BIMForum, USIBD, And the Associated General Contractors of America. Additionally, new BIM implementation guides and Level of Accuracy (LOA) standards are also being prepared for release. Check out the linked article of 5 Takeaways from by RSA’s Sam Billingsley.

State of the industry: 5 takeaways from USIBD and BIMForum

Ragan-Smith Adds ReadySet Service For Construction Verification


ReadySet is a simple construction verification service that uses laser scanners to verify that form boards and stub-ups are set per design. By capturing the site prior to concrete being poured, RSA is able to locate errors when it is most cost effective to have them corrected. With clear, concise, and easy to understand reports delivered in 24-36 hours; ReadySet is helping general contractors insure quality work without slowing down their construction schedule. Check out the video below for a more detailed explanation along with a look at ReadySet’s reporting features.


Communication is the Key to Successful BIM

“3D Scanning has become commonplace on many projects, and can save hours of field verification.  It can also add layers of complexity, confusion, and frustration if not executed properly on a project.”         – Cool, a Point Cloud… Now What?

This article by Jordan Banning and Adam Muñoz for the Autodesk User Group International is an excellent primer on all of the issues that need to be understood or addressed in order to successfully implement a full scan to BIM project.

Read the Full Article


Field Verified Floor Plans

How are you launching your urban infill projects? If you are not using field verified data to build your existing conditions models you are baking error into your project.

RSA has multiple options to produce everything from 2D floor plans to full Revit Building Information Models – and all from field verified data sets. Check out this short video for examples that may prove right for your next project!