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The Visual Twin Keeps Construction Projects on Time with CesiumJS

Lobster Pictures, based in the UK, builds time-lapse cameras (called Lobster Pots, of course) for large-scale construction projects internationally. The company will soon release The Visual TwinTM, a tool displaying 3D models and time comparisons at job sites using CesiumJS. Lobster Pictures’ Visual Twin seeks to decrease unnecessary site visits and increase collaboration among owners, architects, builders, and citizens to keep projects on time and on budget.

The Visual Twin shows recent photogrammetry, an architectural model, and live camera views. Courtesy Lobster Pictures.

With CesiumJS, thousands of people can access the whole-site visualizations and use comparison and measurement tools without extensive training.

“We could not build The Visual Twin without Cesium,” said Robbie Allen, Lobster Pictures managing director. “The platform’s flexibility and scalability have helped us produce an accessible, high-value tool for our clients that is already saving time, money, and carbon on projects.”

The Visual Twin incorporates building plans, IFC and BIM models, photogrammetry and orthophotography, live video, time-lapse imagery at up to 8K resolution, and other data for monitoring, measuring, and collaborating. Drone fly-overs every two weeks provide regular updates to the photogrammetry and aerial maps with centimeter accuracy. 3D models and other massive datasets from the work sites are hosted on Cesium ion and tiled into 3D Tiles for streaming to CesiumJS for quick, accurate, and shareable visualizations.

Try The Visual Twin for yourself in Bristol, England, home of Lobster Pictures. Courtesy Lobster Pictures.

Sam Hobbs, quantity surveyor at BECT Building Contractors in Cardiff, Wales, is among The Visual Twin’s early users. 

“The Visual Twin is helping to increase visibility and accountability on the Lisvane site, reducing disputes, saving site visits, and giving us accurate, measurable, golden-thread-ready views of any part of the site throughout the build. All the visual assets—aerial maps, models, and time lapse—are easy to access in one place, and the service has paid for itself many times over,” Hobbs said.

With streaming data and intuitive built-in tools, The Visual Twin’s whole-site visibility and comparisons enable teams to monitor work sites, maintain progress, and answer important questions from all stakeholders.

Sign up for a free Cesium ion account so you can share the dynamic geospatial data that keeps construction projects on track.