A FRAMEWORK FOR VOXEL-BASED GLOBAL SCALE MODELING OF URBAN ENVIRONMENTS
The generation of 3D city models is a very active field of research. Modeling environments as point clouds may be fast, but has disadvantages. These are easily solvable by using volumetric representations, especially when considering selective data acquisition, change detection and fast changing environments. Therefore, this paper proposes a framework for the volumetric modeling and visualization of large scale urban environments. Beside an architecture and the right mix of algorithms for the task, two compression strategies for volumetric models as well as a data quality based approach for the import of range measurements are proposed. The capabilities of the framework are shown on a mobile laser scanning dataset of the Technical University of Munich. Furthermore the loss of the compression techniques is evaluated and their memory consumption is compared to that of raw point clouds. The presented results show that generation, storage and real-time rendering of even large urban models are feasible, even with off-the-shelf hardware.