Sales of 3D terrestrial laser scanning hardware, software and services will total $86.2 million in 2003, a growth of 22% over '02, according to Spar Point Research LLC (, Danvers, MA). Driven by the urgent need by owners, operators, EPCs and surveyors for faster, safer, more accurate and efficient ways to model existing conditions of built assets and civil infrastructure than traditional manual methods, the market will reach $293.7 million in 2008, a five-year compound annual growth of 28%, Spar Point forecasts.

Spurring growth are:

Rapid advances in 3D laser scanning hardware and software technologies Stepped-up development of best-practice work processes by practitioners who see 3D laser scanning as a competitive differentiator.

Early adopters report:

Gains in safety, cost, schedule, accuracy, completeness, synergy with the 3D design, support for future activities As much as 40% cost savings in as-built modeling¿faster delivery... tenfold reduction in radiation exposure in nuclear retrofits Minimized rework costs... shorter scheduled downtimes Solution providers see growth potential in:

Closer integration with design systems
More affordable scanners
Technology advances boosting
ROI and easing work-process integration
Market entry by large, deep-pocketed providers
Expansion beyond early adopters to mainstream customers

Potential growth constraints include:

  • CAPx weakness
  • Shortage of trained practitioners
  • Inadequate attention by asset owners and contractors to work processes and integration with existing IT

More analysis at

This information is excerpted from Spar Point's forthcoming report titled Modeling Existing Conditions: A Report on Opportunities, Challenges and Best Practices for Owners, Operators, Engineer/Constructors and Surveyors of Built Assets and Civil Infrastructure.

Source: Spar Point Research LLC, Oct. 12, 2003