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Ever export some point cloud data and you notice there is a scan that hasn't been properly registered ? But due to the large amount of data present you are unable to clearly identify which station and scan the point cloud belongs to ? With today’s tip I will show you how to identify scans and stations which each points belong to using the ‘Measure Point’ tool. 


Let's take a look at the project below, as you can see it has multiple scans an area(blue circle) which has not been properly registered. So we want to identify which station and scan these points belong to. 



To identify which station and scans this area belongs to, we must navigate to the quick access bar and select ‘Measure Point’ from ‘Measure’ drop-down pane as shown below 




Once the command pane has opened, we must simply select a point from the cloud and its information such as the position, regions, scan station and scan are displayed ! 



Hope this tip comes in handy the next time you are using Trimble Business Center ! 

Want to learn a little bit more about Trimble's powerful Coordinate System Manager utility for use in TBC and Trimble Access? Attend our free TBC Power Hour session tomorrow, Wednesday August 28th, at 8am Mountain Time - sign-up here -

In TBC, we are always looking for ways to make our workflows as fast as possible. Today I will show you another way to minimize your clicking and scrolling time. 


Let us look at the data set below, it is a digital design and I have been asked to perform data prep on this data set. I have been tasked to create an offset line to represent the back of the curb of this road



I enter the offset line command and here we fill in the necessary information needed to create our offset, but when selecting a layer, rather than clicking on the drop down list, we are able to simply select a member of the same layer from the plan view as such. 




We know the back of the curb will be in the same layer as the curb, hence we can simply select the curb in the plan view to give our offset line the same layer !



Special Thanks to Rui Wu for suggesting this Tip !


Hope this Tip comes in handy, the next time you are using TBC ! 

Whenever we use scan data, we want to make sure that the scans are properly registered to each other. There may be some cases where the imported data may look registered but it isn't quite so. Using today’s tip you can easily do QA on your point cloud registration using the cutting plane view. 


First to access the cutting plane view, we must go to the ‘Point Clouds’ ribbon and select ‘Cutting Plane View’  




You are welcomed to the cutting plane view and here we will need to create a plane which intersects with our point clouds. Under the ‘Plane’ drop down list select  <New>  and you will be welcomed to the Plane Manager. 







In the plane manager, select ‘New’ and create a plane using the choices shown under ‘Planes’ tab. For this current data set, I have chosen the ‘Two points normal definition’ and selected two points in the point clouds to create a plane that intersects my point cloud 


Once you are satisfied with your plane, you may close the plane manager and turn your scan rendering to “Scan Color” so we are able to better visualize different scans. Enter a value such as “1” for the cutting plane thickness (or any thickness you are satisfied with). 


Using the slider at the bottom, you are now able to go through our data and look for discrepancies in your registrations. 



As we can see, the scans are not aligned with each other and definitely needs to be registered once more. 


Hope this tip comes in handy the next time you are using Trimble Business Center. 

Ever been worried that TBC may not be holding the levelness of your scans and tilting them when it performs registration ? Well you can say goodbye to your worries because of TBC’s new functionality of holding leveled scan data locked in the Z-axis. 


Let's Imagine a scenario, you have some scan data and you are looking to register each of the scans but you do not want any tilted scans and want to hold the levelness of the original scans. Well, to do this you must simply go to the properties pane of the scan you are looking to hold the levelness and simply say ‘yes’ in the drop down menu. 



For this feature to be available, your scan stations must have 6 degrees of freedom that support level/tilt compensation. 


When the Level compensation is turned on, the registration and georeferencing of scans are only computed with a 3D position shift and a rotation in the Z-axis without computing computing X and Y axis rotations. 


When the Level compensation is turned off, the registration and georeferencing of scans are computed with a 3D position shift and a 3D rotation along with X-and Y- and Z-axis rotations. 


Note : By turning off level compensation prior to registration and/or georeferencing, one is able to achieve a better fit but at the expense of introducing level-related errors. 


Hope this tip will come in handy the next time you are using Trimble Business Center !  

Wednesday, August 28th - 8am MDT

Working with Coordinate System Manager (CSM)

If you are a beginner or a long-time user of TBC or Trimble Access, chances are you’ve used the Coordinate System Manager (CSM) utility, Trimble’s stand-alone utility to manage, customize, and export coordinate systems for use in field and office surveying work. Guest presenter Neil Robicheau from Frontier Precision will show you how to use CSM more efficiently to create custom systems, add local sites, datums, and geoids, and other best practices. Neil has 20 years of field experience with Trimble equipment and is a licensed PLS in Alaska and Washington.

Attendees will learn how to:

- Efficiently use CSM by grouping and defining coordinate systems
- Add local sites, datums, ellipsoids, and geoids to the CSM library
- Define custom coordinate systems, such as low-distortion projections (LDPs) and Modified State Plane systems
- Utilize custom coordinate systems in TBC and Trimble Access
- Work with multiple reference frames

Register here -…/2692601023029425933

See you then!

If you are new to TBC, welcome!  We are glad that you've chosen our product and hope you enjoy discovering the survey data processing, CAD capabilities, point cloud tools, deliverable creation options, and more featured in TBC.


Learning a new technical software can be difficult at times so we've created these two videos to help you get started.


Part 1 - Downloading, installing, and licensing - Getting Started with TBC - Part 1 - Downloading, Installing, and Licensing - YouTube 


Part 2 - Understanding the interface, menus, and navigating through survey data - Getting Started in TBC - Part 2 - Navigating the TBC Interface - YouTube 

TBC’s computation engine is always looking to compute grid coordinates (N,E,Elevation) and global coordinates (Lat, Long, Ellipsoidal Heights). But let’s imagine a scenario where you are measuring the coordinates of a point using both GNSS measurements and total station observations. Which method does TBC use to compute the points elevation and height ? 



We know that GNSS observations give us ellipsoidal heights measured from the reference ellipsoid. To be able to convert these heights into elevations (Orthometric Heights) we must subtract the geoid undulation (Geoid Height) from the elevation taken from GNSS observations. 




Let us look at the point quality hierarchy used in TBC : 


  1. Network adjusted 
  2. Control Quality 
  3. Survey Quality
  4. Survey Geoid Quality 
  5. Mapping Quality 
  6. Mapping Geoid Quality 
  7. Unknown Geoid 
  8. Unknown



In our example, our measurements are measured with survey quality. Hence, 

  • Total station observations produce:
    • Survey quality elevations
    • Survey geoid quality heights
  • GNSS observations produce:
    • Survey quality heights
    • Survey geoid quality elevations


Why? Because the geoid reduces the quality when converting from heights to elevations and vice versa. 



This means our GNSS observations has survey quality heights but the total station observations has survey geoid quality heights. 


So, to answer our original question, TBC uses the elevations from the Total Station observations and Heights from GNSS observation to keep the highest quality. 


For more information on TBC's computation engine, please check out our Power hour about Integrating multiple types of data here