Yuan Li, Bo Wu

Research output: Journal article publicationConference articleAcademic researchpeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


Automatic 3D building reconstruction from laser scanning or photogrammetric point clouds has gained increasing attention in the past two decades. Although many efforts have been made, the complexity of buildings and incompletion of point clouds, i.e., data missing, still make it a challenging task for automatic 3D reconstruction of buildings in large-scale urban scenes with various architectural styles. This paper presents an innovative approach for automatic generation of 3D models of complex buildings from even incomplete point clouds. The approach first decomposes the 3D space into multiple space units, including 3D polyhedral cells, facets and edges, where the facets and edges are also encoded with topological-relation constraints. Then, the units and constraints are used together to approximate the buildings. On one hand, by extracting facets from 3D cells and further extracting edges from facets, this approach simplifies complicated topological computations. On the other hand, because this approach models buildings on the basis of polyhedral cells, it can guarantee that the models are manifold and watertight and avoid correcting topological errors. A challenging dataset containing 105 buildings acquired in Central, Hong Kong, was used to evaluate the performance of the proposed approach. The results were compared with two previous methods and the comparisons suggested that the proposed approach outperforms other methods in terms of robustness, regularity, and accuracy of the models, with an average root-mean-square error of less than 0.9 m. The proposed approach is of significance for automatic 3D modelling of buildings for urban applications.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)85-92
Number of pages8
JournalISPRS Annals of the Photogrammetry, Remote Sensing and Spatial Information Sciences
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 3 Aug 2020
Event2020 24th ISPRS Congress - Technical Commission V (TC-V) on Education and Outreach - Youth Forum - Nice, Virtual, France
Duration: 31 Aug 20202 Sept 2020


  • 3D building reconstruction
  • Point clouds
  • Space decomposition
  • Topological relation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Earth and Planetary Sciences (miscellaneous)
  • Environmental Science (miscellaneous)
  • Instrumentation


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