Is laser scanning the future of yachting? SYT investigates

Written by Kayla Dowling

Refitting a superyacht can pose many challenges. As such, precision is key to ensuring that the task at hand is solidly completed. To overcome some of the challenges involved in superyacht design, and to deliver that all essential precision, Bravo Yacht Design Group (BYD) have developed accurate, 3D high-tech laser scanning that is used throughout the entire lifecycle of a superyacht. Laser Scan of yachts Investing in laser 

BYD Group is based in Barcelona and Palma de Mallorca and was founded in 2004, investing in high-tech laser scanning from the inception of the firm. With almost two decades of service in the yachting industry, the company offers comprehensive naval architecture services, and takes a calculated and data-based approach. By employing the use of high-tech laser scanning that simplifies the complexities associated with refit projects and beyond, projects they undertake range from scanning a propeller with a diameter of 1-metre to scanning the entire interior and exterior of a yacht ahead of a refit.Laser Scan of yachts

2,500 metres scanned

BYD Group has completed scans of over 200 yachts totalling more than 2,500 metres of hull length scanned. In addition to the sheer number of scans completed, a scan using one of BYD’s three scanners collects millions of data points, ensuring precision. While the collection of millions of data points may seem redundant, the company says this extensive approach ensures success while refitting or building. 

Super precise lasers

The group employs two long range Faro-Focus scanners that are capable of measuring within one millimetre from as far away as 330 metres. They are also able to measure close to a million data points every second. A third smaller, but even more accurate, Go! Spark scanner used by the group, provides accurate measurements within 0.05 millimetres.Laser Scan of yachts The real work starts post-scan

The laser scanner is merely a tool availed by BYD Group’s dexterous naval architects to inform the best possible approach: “3D scanning is a hugely skilled job, with very precise setup required for accurate results,” says BYD naval architect Tià Simó. “The equipment is portable, so the scan can be carried out wherever the boat lies, but the biggest investment comes back in the office, after the scan. Post-processing is critical to obtaining a precise image and must be done by a professional.” Laser Scan of yachts BYD has used its expertise in laser scanning for projects of different scopes, such as the mapping of the entire J-Class fleet for rating purposes in 2019, which included the unparalleled classic sailing yacht, the 39.4-metre Velsheda, to improve the symmetry of her steel hull. In-depth scans were also required to precisely measure the dimensions of specific areas on the 73.98-metre superyacht Cocoa Bean and 47.5-metre Feadship yacht Nostalgia, ahead of major refit work. BYD even fashioned its technology and expertise to aid in the design of a hull extension for the carbon racing yacht Jethou.

High-tech laser scanning has seemingly endless applications, from small-scale modifications to detailed exterior refits, as in the case of the 72.54-metre Lürssen superyacht Coral Ocean. The implementation of this technology by the experts at BYD Group ensures that any-sized project embarks on a strongly established foundation.

This article was originally published in the Summer 2021 issue of The SuperYacht Times newspaper. To receive all future issues straight to your door, subscribe to the newspaper here.



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