A picture-perfect view of the 3D laser scanner’s ability to extract colour, as well as coordinates of a surrounding area of interest for an Australian project, within seconds of acquisition.
The CSIR has strengthened the technological capability at its coastal and hydraulics laboratory in Stellenbosch through the introduction of a 3D laser scanner to measure damage to small-scale physical models of breakwaters.
CSIR researchers in Stellenbosch have demonstrated their ability to be at the forefront of technology by using the 3D laser scanner.
“The high-definition laser scanner acquired by the laboratory has the ability to extract a picture-like 3D scan of a structure and to produce accurate measurements. Previously, we used digital images to quantify movement by ‘blinking’ between two fixed images and recording the changes,” explains Dave Phelp, research group leader of the Stellenbosch team.
With the laser scanner as a damage-assessment tool, the CSIR team was successful in securing a physical model study last year for the West Pilbara Iron Ore project in Australia. Researchers evaluated the theoretical main-armour design against cyclone wave conditions expected at the location, by comparing the cross-sectional profile at the end of each test series.
Following the success of previous international projects in Qatar (the Port of Doha) and Australia (Port Hedland), the CSIR laboratory recently completed the Qatar Economic Zone 3 Canal physical model study that was required to validate the results done numerically by the client. This study was carried out to measure the waves within the basin and allowed the CSIR to demonstrate its keofloat technology that accurately measures the wave height of very small waves within a basin.
CSIR researchers carried out similar physical model studies to assess the suitability of the main-armour design of the breakwaters for the proposed West Australian Port of Dampier, for the East Australian Port of Mackay and for the Dawei Deep Sea Port in Burma (Myanmar).
Locally, a research highlight was the proposed repairs to the Richards Bay South Breakwater. Such repairs involved providing guidelines for the placement of dolos armour units around the South Breakwater for the Transnet National Ports Authority. The CSIR also assessed alternate armour units for the breakwater in a 3D physical model for future design considerations. This also provided Transnet staff with the opportunity to be involved in the model tests, assisting them towards achieving professional engineer registration.