Engineering-ready Reality Mesh

Bentley Systems, Incorporated, a leading global provider of comprehensive software solutions for advancing infrastructure, demonstrated at SPAR 3D Expo & Conference (SPAR) new ContextCapture offerings for reality modeling that increase joint opportunities in surveying and engineering. ContextCapture capabilities now include cloud processing services, a mobile app, and photo planning for Bentley’s applications. ContextShare extends Bentley’s ProjectWise connected data environment to securely manage, share, and stream reality meshes, and their input sources, across project teams and applications. Navigator Web is a new web application that delivers high-performance streaming of very large reality meshes through the browser to desktop or mobile devices.

For infrastructure project delivery, reality modeling captures the actual context of infrastructure projects through photos and/or scans, creating engineering-ready reality meshes for design modeling, analytical modeling, and construction modeling. During asset performance, as-operated reality meshes can serve to immersively geo-coordinate the alignment of these digital engineering models with right-time inputs from connected IoT technologies. Accordingly, reality modeling extends the scope for engineers to add value to include “conceptioneering” and “constructioneering” for capital projects, and “inspectioneering” and “productioneering” for operating assets. These use-case benefits of “continuous surveying” in turn provide new value opportunities for surveyors throughout the infrastructure lifecycle.

A 3D engineering-ready reality mesh created in ContextCapture comparing (left to right) photogrammetry, LiDAR, and a hybrid input. Image courtesy of Bentley Systems and City of Strasbourg.

Bureau Veritas, with 66,000 employees around the globe, is a world leader in testing, inspection, and certification of infrastructure assets. Thomas Daubigny, Bureau Veritas Chief Digital Officer, said, “Reality modeling is becoming pivotal in many industries as it fundamentally changes the management of assets, reinventing the handling of inspections, maintenance, and training, while opening doors to brand new services. Bureau Veritas is playing a key role in leveraging digital engineering models, implementing acquisition, and classifying objects based on its expertise on the asset, and ultimately operating the model as a data gatekeeper. The new Bentley ContextCapture cloud processing service will provide us the flexibility and power to accelerate the deployment of such innovations to our clients.”

CEO Greg Bentley said, “Last year at SPAR I described what I believed to be the significant potential of reality modeling for improved infrastructure engineering, in particular, from continuous surveying enabled by simple digital photography and UAVs, but that was then based only on our own experience. And there could have been resistance from survey professionals concerned that this more accessible technology might jeopardize their return on investments in laser scanning specialization, for example. It is gratifying to report now that in the intervening year, reality modeling has ‘gone mainstream’ globally, supporting projects and assets of every domain and scale in ‘going digital.’ Additionally, laser scanning is now fully incorporated—where available, and as needed to supplement photography—among hybrid inputs for engineering-ready reality meshes.

“Our ContextCapture and ProjectWise ContextShare announcements today at SPAR complete the reach, in my view, for reality modeling’s fidelity, accessibility, scalability, and shareability. In the coming year, our priority at Bentley Systems is to help engineers and surveyors take full advantage of this breakthrough opportunity to broaden the scope and value of their work in ‘going digital’ themselves!”

Bentley’s reality modeling advancements comprehensively deliver to surveying and engineering teams:


Hybrid processing in ContextCapture enables the creation of engineering-ready reality meshes that incorporate the best of both worlds – the versatility and convenience of high-resolution photography, supplemented, where needed, by additional accuracy from laser scanning. The new photo planning capabilities in Bentley’s applications empower engineering or survey professionals to easily prescribe the optimal camera positions and flight paths for UAVs to achieve the required levels of accuracy, in particular, for critical inspection points.


The new ContextCapture mobile app brings reality capture to every member of a project delivery or asset management team. Combined with the new ContextCapture cloud processing service, this delivers 3D reality meshes back to the mobile device, and to office-based professionals, immediately after a set of photos have been taken. The new Navigator Web application makes immersive reality modeling accessible through any browser, with progressive levels of detail.


ContextCapture uniquely enables reality modeling to scale from city models to site models to component nameplates. Users can now take advantage of cloud services’ inherent parallel computing to speed processing of reality meshes. Scalable mesh technology enables multi-resolution inputs through the new (.3sm) format.


ProjectWise, the collaboration system of choice for the majority of the ENR Top Design Firms, delivers comprehensive work sharing supported by a connected data environment, unifying design and construction teams to enable comprehensive project delivery. ProjectWise CONNECT Edition is provisioned by Microsoft’s Azure cloud service, and supports hybrid environments. The new ProjectWise ContextShare service adds breakthrough performance in securely streaming reality meshes and their inputs, making it possible to instantly and persistently share full-scale engineering-ready datasets across a distributed team, whether in the field or in the office. Offered through a visa subscription, with charges only for actual use, ProjectWise ContextShare completes the reach of Bentley’s comprehensive reality modeling solution, empowering engineering and surveying professionals to extend the value of their services across all applications and throughout the infrastructure lifecycle.

About Bentley Systems

Bentley Systems is a global leader in providing engineers, architects, geospatial professionals, constructors, and owner-operators with comprehensive software solutions for advancing the design, construction, and operations of infrastructure. Bentley users leverage information mobility across disciplines and throughout the infrastructure lifecycle to deliver better-performing projects and assets. Bentley solutions encompass MicroStation applications for information modeling, ProjectWise collaboration services to deliver integrated projects, and AssetWise operations services to achieve intelligent infrastructure – complemented by worldwide professional services and comprehensive managed services.

Founded in 1984, Bentley has more than 3,000 colleagues in over 50 countries, more than $600 million in annual revenues, and since 2009 has invested more than $1 billion in research, development, and acquisitions.

Additional information about Bentley is available at

Source: Bentley