Scaling the heights with ZEB REVO

“Compared to our first attempts at the manual survey, the ZEB-REVO definitely helped deliver improved quality of data in a shorter period of time”

Dating back to the 1940s, the Acaiaca Building was once the tallest skyscraper in the city of Belo Horizonte, Brazil, measuring 130 metres high and comprising 30 floors.

Tasked with creating as-built architectural 3D models ahead of a major electrical installation and an upgrade of fire prevention systems, the PARAGRAM Architecture and Consultant team quickly realised that the project called for more than laser tape, pen and paper.

The renovation of the art deco building was of particular significance to the population of Belo Horizonte. Constructed during the Second World War, the building originally housed a cinema, nightclub and shops, as well as an air-raid shelter. Now home to offices, the Acaiaca was a building of significant cultural heritage that locals quite rightly wanted to protect.

Researching the market for solutions, the PARAGRAM team chose GeoSLAM’s lightweight ZEB REVO mobile mapping device to quickly and efficiently create building plans of the huge building, in a fraction of the time that using total stations or traditional survey equipment would allow.



Point cloud view of the Acaica Building that will be used to produce the BIM Model


BIM Model generated using 3D scan data captured by the ZEB REVO

The ZEB-REVO scanner enabled the PARAGRAM team to quickly create up-to-date BIM models of any renovation work, as Jose Vargas, BIM Technology Consultant of PARAGRAM explains: “Based on our first measurements, we estimated that it would take three of our employees over 40 hours to scan the entirety of the building with laser tapes, which was far longer than we initially expected. When we first began the project we were concentrating far too much on the refurbishment, making doors and windows, rather than obtaining a sufficiently accurate survey of the building’s internal dimensions.”

In order to tackle the 30 floors, the PARAGRAM team made careful plans to make each scan as efficient as possible. Predicting that each floor would take less than 20 minutes, the ZEB-REVO scans were programmed to achieve the maximum number of consecutive levels for each shot, while also creating minimal overlap.
Starting at the floor’s stair or elevator entrance, two employees began the job of surveying the 8,357 metre² building.

Whereas it could have taken days or weeks to produce detailed plans with laser tapes and paper, using the ZEB-REVO the team was able to survey the whole building in just ten hours with a “walk and scan” method of data collection. Commenting further, Alexandre Fraga, Architect / BIM Consultant added: “Using the equipment, we were not only impressed with the ease of handling, but also how much detail we were able to capture with the cloud points. With each scan we gathered much more information that was anticipated, such as the registration of structures, beams, roof trusses and engine rooms in areas that would be difficult and time consuming to access.”

About Paragram

PARAGRAM Architecture and Consulting combines the knowledge and experience of architecture, 

IT and project management professionals to modernise the consulting and implementation of the BIM process.

Applying technology to every aspect of their work, the company helps businesses that are in the transition phase of moving from architecture, engineering and construction (AEC) to BIM. Supplying project-oriented training and tailor-made consultancy, the team delve into their client’s resources to optimise their AEC processes.