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3D laser scanning market expected to grow 8.8 percent annually

An ARC Advisory Group report on the 3D Laser scanning market is forecasting growth of 8.8 percent annually (from 2011 to 2016) in the overall worldwide market.

The report, called the “3D Laser Scanning Worldwide Outlook”, said growth will be driven by both replacing older mechanical methods, and by improved work flow. Also, improved 3D laser scanning products provide lower total project costs, enabling more projects to obtain financial approval. 

3D laser scanning equipment senses the shape of an object and collects data for the location of the outer surface. This distinct technology has found applications in many industries including discrete and process manufacturing, utilities, construction, archaeology, law enforcement, government, and entertainment. 

“Advances in the areas of hardware, software, improved workflow, and ease-of-use have lowered project and operational costs which expands the applications for 3D laser scanning,” according to Research Director Ralph Rio, the principal author of ARC’s “3D Laser Scanning Worldwide Outlook” ( 

“Improvements in software identify surfaces and convert them into objects that are used in CAD programs for faster project execution.  This is just one of many areas providing huge gains in user productivity.”

The 3D laser scanning market has sub-segments that coalesce around technical capability, corresponding applications, and distinct suppliers.  There are three market sub-segments based on range (distance) for the laser scan.  They are:

Short Range: usually under a meter

Medium Range: typical application of under 50 meters

Long Range: typically up to two kilometers

The segment for short range equipment and software is experiencing both rapid technological innovation and revenue growth.  In the medium range sub-segment, the hardware is more stable with software providing increasing value-added business benefits.  The long range sub-segment has some very interesting application areas, but has relatively expensive equipment, said the report.

For more information on this study, consult:

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