Cintoo: Reimagining Data: How Cintoo Builds Digital Twins from Reality Capture Data

There is no question that data drives business and provides powerful insights, but what if data could be harnessed in a way that completely transforms the visualization process? Cintoo, the Visual Twin Platform for scans and BIM, has realized the potential of reality capture data to power a full working model of an organization’s projects, existing systems, and processes. More specifically, Cintoo is essential in helping to bring data to life: when laser scanners or drones generate as-built conditions by surveying a built space, this information can be uploaded to Cintoo as 3D-mesh models, which provide an amazing virtual representation of this space with the highest possible fidelity and no loss of the original scan data resolution. What’s more, already existent BIM (Building Information Modelling) and CAD (Computer Aided-Design) models can be uploaded into Cintoo Cloud to further create a comprehensive and holistic view of a construction space, both on its as-built reality and on its as-designed objective. The potential for this technology to transform how construction projects are completed cannot be overstated. The power of this technology to help companies utilize their reality capture data creates an ease of use and effectiveness that supports a project in its entirety, from start to finish.

The number one challenge for customers when it comes to Digital Twin is to get an understanding of their as-built conditions. They use Reality Capture technologies such as laser scanners or drones to survey their industrial sites. This 3D data, often referred to as ‘point clouds’ creates the mandatory foundation for every Digital Twin model. But those point clouds can be very heavy (terabytes of data for any factory or plant) and difficult to view, manipulate and share. Cintoo has solved these challenges using a unique point cloud-to-mesh technology, which makes the Reality Capture data fully cloud-compatible, easily interpretable by experts and non-experts alike, shareable and distributable, and interconnected to other SaaS platforms to any internal or external team member working on Digital Twins using a simple web browser.

Visualizing Concepts with Ease

Dominique Pouliquen, Co-Founder and CEO of Cintoo, stresses the importance that reality capture has on construction projects of all sizes, and in all domains. “Our existing customers, being in the automobile, oil, gas, and building construction markets, are all having difficulties managing their as-built spaces. Over 90% of most projects are built already, but not many have a 3D virtual and digital replica that we call a digital twin that could be used for all kinds of use cases like simulations, quality control or operations. What we do is to optimize your reality capture data so that the as-built conditions captured using  laser scanners and drones can create the foundation for your digital twins,” Pouliquen says. “New builds are rare in most industries today, and so acquiring the as-built conditions for an already existing space provides the first step in being able to create Digital Twin workflows. By using Cintoo Cloud, you can now visualize the whole concept.”

The democratization of reality capture data, including helping companies to utilize the visual power that data can have, is core to Cintoo’s solution. In addition, with Cintoo, there are three core value propositions; Being agnostic of all scanning device is one of them. “We will take your point cloud from any device,” Pouliquen says. “It is important for us to support different devices from different vendors because all types of industries use different equipment. Certain use cases will also require different capture technology.” The second core value proposition that Cintoo provides is being able to then compress data, upload it to the cloud, and make it available so it can be easily viewed, interpreted, managed and collaborated on. “The platform is based on unlimited users,” Pouliquen says, meaning multiple people from multiple sectors, and even in various parts of the world, can all work on the same project together, using the same data, simultaneously. By compressing the data, a 3D-mesh model is created which allows multiple people to work on the same visual workflow. This process is powered by TurboMesh, Cintoo’s core rendering engine for web browsers. The third value proposition is then helping companies learn what to do with these 3D representations and digital twins. “We want to become the single source of truth for everything related to a project’s as-built conditions,” Pouliquen says. This means helping companies align their design intent with pre-existing conditions and allowing for other BIM or CAD models to seamlessly plug into Cintoo Cloud.

In Cintoo, the BIM or CAD model of any construction project can be easily uploaded and compared to your as- built conditions, allowing to detect clashes, design issues or misalignments. “We try to anticipate all those problems by comparing the as-built conditions with the design intent,” Pouliquen says. Not only can Cintoo overlap with existing BIM and CAD models, but it also facilitates the scan-to-BIM workflow within the same platform. “What [the company] gets at the end is a BIM or CAD model that has been updated to the reality that exists at a certain time,” Pouliquen says.

Pouliquen emphasizes the versatility of this process by pointing out a recent example of how Cintoo was able to transform an automobile factory re-visualization. “Automobile industries all have digital twins of their existing facilities because those chains of production change very frequently and they often need to implement new factory layouts. This requires a 3D model to be laid out first using the reality capture data acquired initially through laser scanning.” Using Cintoo, the process becomes collaborative with much more scope for visualization. “For example, in the new factory layout, the company needs to see how a new piece of equipment would fit. So first they use reality capture data to get the as-built conditions. Then they overlay the BIM or CAD model of this new equipment to make sure that it fits with the other existing equipment. Architects and engineers can then see how the piece of equipment will fit into the space as is,” Pouliquen explains. This process saves users ample money and time, assuring a ROI on their Digital Twin investment.

Other use cases require much more careful procedures to be conducted, and with an elevated level of precision. “Another use case has to do with global asset management. A huge issue for large refineries or energy processing or distribution facilities is preventive maintenance for their equipment. Typically, all the information related to maintenance sits in an Enterprise Asset Management platform, which uses a 3D CAD model that might not be accurate or up to date. So, by starting from the reality capture data, users can know what the pre-existing conditions are for those equipment. We use AI technology to automatically geolocate and classify various repetitive equipment in the scans, for example all the motors that you have in your facility. Knowing the existing conditions visually will help with managing maintenance of such equipment,” says Pouliquen.

Redefining Digital Twin

The capabilities of Cintoo are endless. With the ability to build a digital twin model featuring the as-built conditions, companies can manage their assets, compare BIM and CAD models to the existing conditions, distribute information, collaborate simultaneously, and visualize key pieces of manufacturing or design that might need to be changed. This not only allows for improved speed and efficiency for projects, but also helps companies become more profitable due to travel and budget restrictions and timelines that are met from the get-go. “What if everybody could start from a single source of truth virtually and make every measurement or any new design without traveling to the job site? There are so many different use cases,” Pouliquen says.

Cintoo is always developing and implementing new features and improvements to the Cintoo offering. The latest developments include Asset Tagging and Display where Digital Twin users can use one of three integral methods to locate and tag their assets within Cintoo, including the use of cutting-edge AI. Cintoo is also leveraging its core high-resolution, mesh-streaming technology to allow the creation of immersive and collaborative Industrial Metaverse experiences on platforms such as NVidia Omniverse, Unreal or Unity.

Cintoo is being used by over four-hundred companies in forty-three different countries worldwide. While these customers have already gleaned unimaginable value from using Cintoo, Pouliquen believes that this type of visual twin can only become that much more universal. “We want to be able to integrate metaverse experiences with your existing, as built conditions. When you are in the metaverse, you are within a real space at scale one,” says Pouliquen. Cintoo is on track to provide companies with a total immersive and interactive experience by creating an even more realistic digital twins powered by real data.


Dominique Pouliquen
Co-Founder and CEO

“We’re not just creating a Metaverse; we’re building a bridge between the digital and physical worlds.”

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