3D laser scanning by TruePoint for an oil tank replacement.

Case Study: Oil Tank 3D Laser Scan

Location: Emporia, Kansas

Task: TruePoint provided terrestrial-based 3D laser scanning services for a 25' x 25' x 30' oil tank near Topeka, Kansas. The objective was to capture the existing conditions of the tank, piping, flanges, nozzles, structural steel, pipe supports and grade.

Challenge: The client was upgrading the oil tank and needed 3D laser scanning to plan for the removal and replacement. For tank replacement, the true shape and condition of the tank can be critical for ensuring that the new design fits the existing conditions; hence reducing costly delays or rework. All piping, nozzles and structural steel around the tank was reality captured so the new tank could be designed with proper fit and without interruptions to the unit.

Solutions: 3D laser scanning provides a way to quickly and accurately obtain the existing condition information. The exact dimensions of a tank can easily be determined to ensure that fabrications match the existing structure. In less than 5 hours on site, the TruePoint laser scan technician captured the as built conditions of the existing tank and nozzles. Once the point cloud was registered, TruePoint CAD technicians delivered the point cloud data for the client to incorporate into their design model.

Deliverable: TruePoint delivered Intensity Map Point Cloud files, RCS Files and PTG Files to the client. TruePoint uses Leica Laser scanners, which can also capture images to further enhance the collected data. These images, called TruViews, were provided to the client and offer factual record of the areas inspected.

Added Value: TruePoint is an experienced 3D laser scanning company. Our knowledgeable scan technicians confidently scan complex jobs with extreme safety requirements. For this job, the technician used an intrinsically-safe laser scanner, since any spark would cause an explosion for this particular tank farm. Also, delivering the point cloud data gives the client the ability to do clash detection for interferences, saving them time and money in the field.

For 3D laser scanning services in Kansas, call TruePoint at 913-912-0318 or email kansascity@truepointscanning.com.


Isometric view of scan area captured from a tripod mounted scanner.


Perspective view of the hexane tank.


Perspective view of piping surrounding the oil tank.