USA flag logo/image

An Official Website of the United States Government

SBIR Phase I: A Novel Video-Based Software Application For Automatic And…

Award Information

Agency:
National Science Foundation
Branch:
N/A
Award ID:
Program Year/Program:
2013 / SBIR
Agency Tracking Number:
1248784
Solicitation Year:
2012
Solicitation Topic Code:
EI
Solicitation Number:
Small Business Information
Metalforming Inc.
100 International Drive Peachtree City, GA 30269-1909
View profile »
Woman-Owned: No
Minority-Owned: No
HUBZone-Owned: No
 
Phase 1
Fiscal Year: 2013
Title: SBIR Phase I: A Novel Video-Based Software Application For Automatic And Accurate Roof Surveying
Agency: NSF
Contract: 1248784
Award Amount: $150,000.00
 

Abstract:

This Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Phase I project will investigate the technical and commercial feasibility of designing a video-based roof surveying software. Roof surveying is an essential activity in sheet metal roofing projects. Several technologies have been evolved over the years for this purpose; however, none of them are safe, inexpensive, automatic, and accurate enough at the same time. Tape measurement is therefore still the standard practice despite its apparent limitations. This project will address this need by automatically generating an accurate 3Dwirediagram of a roof which includes necessary measurements. If successful, it will be the world?s first videobased roof surveying software that fulfills all industry requirements (accuracy, simplicity, cost, safety, and efficiency). When using it, a roofing contractor simply collects stereo video from a roof and sends it to a server for processing. Unlike existing vision-based software that only use point level information, the software uses a hybrid formulation that combines points, lines, and planes. This higher level information enhances the output accuracy to the required level. Once measurements are automatically extracted and sent back, the contractor uploads them to an on-site roll forming machine to roll form and cut sheet metal coil into precise, ready to install panels. The broader impact/commercial potential of this project is to address inherent deficiencies of current technologies for roof surveying and bring the sheet metal roofing trade up to the modern standards of CAD/CAM used in many other industries. Compared to tape measuring, this project will significantly reduce measuring costs and also eliminate the exposure of employees to fall hazards, thereby decreasing the very high number of occupational injuries and fall deaths which occur in the roofing industry (7% of private construction fatalities in 2009). The simplicity of the application will remove the need for trained surveyors which are required for surveying with a total station. It could also provide more accurate measurements compared to satellite imaging technology and hence satisfy industry requirements. Beyond the target industry (i.e., sheet metal roofing), this solution could be used by virtually any roofing contractors worldwide. It could also be adapted to many of the other building trades where as-built documentation is required to build components, including metal façade manufacturers/installers and HVAC contractors. This, in turn, will result in time and cost savings, which can improve the efficiency of the construction industry. Surveying equipment manufacturers and surveying companies are the other key players in the target market of this application.

Principal Investigator:

William G. Wilkins
7706310002
bwilkins@metalforming-usa.com

Business Contact:

William G. Wilkins
7706310002
bwilkins@metalforming-usa.com
Small Business Information at Submission:

Metalforming Inc.
100 International Drive Peachtree City, GA 30269-1909

EIN/Tax ID: 582339671
DUNS: N/A
Number of Employees:
Woman-Owned: No
Minority-Owned: No
HUBZone-Owned: No