Regional Scientific Support Services at West Yorkshire Police have become the first force in Europe to purchase a Trimble SX10 Scanning Total Station. The instrument will be used by its in-house Imaging Unit, one of the largest and most forward looking in the UK, providing regional Imaging services to the whole of Yorkshire and Humberside.
The KOREC supplied SX10, which combines high-density 3D scan data, imaging and high-accuracy total station data in a single unit, will provide RSSS Crime Scene Surveyors with more flexibility when collecting evidence at crime scenes. It will supplement the force’s existing two short range 3D laser scanners and newly purchased Trimble GPS.
Crime scene surveying is often undertaken in challenging conditions with time constraints. The SX10 is a hybrid instrument which means everything is combined into a single unit for easy transportation to scenes, especially those in hard to access areas. Using a single instrument also reduces the chances of contaminating evidence whilst allowing a flexible approach to data collection and best use of site time.
Once on the crime scene, the SX10 is used to establish external control, outside the area of interest. Without the SX10 a separate scanner and total station would be required. Static positions of the control stations are undertaken with the Trimble GPS and tied into the OS Grid.
Further time savings are delivered because the SX10 is driven by Trimble Access software on a tablet rather than with an eyepiece for targeting. This means that the on-scene surveyor can draw a polygon over the tablet’s live video feed enabling the customisation of the scan area and scan density, cutting the overall scan time and file size. This reduces the need for time consuming 360°scans. Smaller, targeted scans mean that data can be easily handled and quickly processed in Trimble RealWorks.
In recent years forensic multimedia has become an essential tool in the courtroom and key to providing both the judge and jury with a better understanding of the evidence. The Trimble SX10 will provide Yorkshire and Humberside Police with deliverables suitable for this process. Additionally, SX10 generated point cloud data, via third party software, will be prepared for use with a 3D printer. This has already enabled the Imaging Unit to produce entire crime scenes, scaled down, for use in the court room.
Daniel Sharp, Crime Scene Surveying Supervisor, West Yorkshire Police said, “The Trimble SX10 provides our Yorkshire and the Humberside regional Crime Scene Surveyors with a fast, flexible and accurate means of capturing exhibits at major incidents over large areas. This is especially useful in situations where we have little prior knowledge of the scene. For the first time, we can arrive at a scene and scan, photograph or measure everything we need with just one instrument. The cleanliness of the data generated by the SX10 allows us to create exceptional quality 3D deliverables for use in court, clarifying complex crime scenes into understandable graphics or 3D printed models for judge and jurors.”
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