Do I Even Know What a Point Cloud is?

Have you ever decided to reverse engineer a product but got stuck up at the CAD modeling stage? This blog post is all about a subset of this issue: Point Cloud to Native CAD Conversion.

The problem described above is quite a common one since not every professional, regardless of specialization or talent, is well-versed and in-touch with the ever-growing CAD world of the modern era. This understandable limitation prompts most engineers to place an emphasis on outsourcing the task of native CAD conversion.

However, before diving into the details of how the Point Cloud to Native CAD Conversion is performed, lets devote some time to understanding what point cloud actually is.


Point Cloud: A Precise 3D Scan for Reverse Engineering

Point Cloud Model of a Car

Point Cloud is a highly innovative technology that makes use of 3D scanning and finds widespread application in the area of reverse engineering.

More than often, engineers find themselves with design problems that require the modeling of a physical product so complex in nature that developing a CAD model through conventional reverse engineering means is virtually impossible.

This is where point cloud comes into the picture. Rather than investing unjustifiable amounts of time into modeling, it is much better to adopt the use of advanced technology like precise 3D scanning. Scanners can nowadays provide a detailed image of the actual product in the form of a three-dimensional cluster of points, known as a point cloud.

For example, if one intends to modify a car’s body for better aerodynamics, they need to have a native CAD model in order to incorporate the desired modifications and conduct CFD flow analyses. However, developing a CAD model can be time-consuming and obtaining a point cloud and converting it to their native CAD platform can be much more feasible in this case.


Point Cloud to Native CAD Conversion: How it’s Done?

Understanding the Process

Now the questions arise: with the cluster of points at one’s disposal, how to create a CAD model out of it? For Point Cloud to Native CAD Conversion, the basic concept is the same and discuss below.

The points all represent the expected shape of the model but are still nowhere near a model that can be altered using simple CAD features like extrude, cut etc. For this, the points need to be joined in such a way that the cumulative result not only resembles the actual physical product but also clear of any loopholes.

The primary technique employed for this is the creation of a mesh. The points are joined together to create a large number of polynomial and triangular surfaces that combine to form one surface, free of holes and discontinuities.

Once this is done, specialists can convert this to any native CAD file and develop a solid model that can be altered any way the end user wants.

Heat Exchanger Converted into a Point Cloud File


A great example of this can be seen in the image just to the right. This heat exchanger has been converted into a point cloud file and converted into a plethora of tangential surfaces, which has given it the look of a solid and continuous body, ready for further work on it.

A major advantage of the use of 3D scanning is that it can be used to achieve accuracies as high as .005” native parametric CAD model. They render point cloud to native CAD conversions so smooth that there is near zero chance of any discernible discontinuity.

Thus it is quite clear how Point Cloud to Native CAD Conversion is carried out and how does it benefit engineers who wish to re-design products but lack the software/hardware to do so.


CAD / CAM Services: The Best Service Provider Out There!

We Work For You!

With the summary of the whole process done and dusted, what remains is the question of availability of such specialized services in areas of your reach.

CAD / CAM services is a leading company that boasts a dedicated team of highly skilled professionals that can perform any point cloud to native CAD conversion you like. With our precise 3D scan techniques and rated accuracy of up to .005”, the native parametric CAD models we produce are absolutely top of the class.

Whether you want to transform complex structures to 3D printable CAD formats, aim to re-design a product in your own innovative way, or are simply attempting to analyze your products, our out of the box CAD solutions can help you reach the top.

For further queries regarding point cloud to native CAD conversion, get in touch with our experts.

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