MIT Senseable City Lab uses 3D laser scans to map Rio's favelas

This one-minute video shows how MIT’s @senseable_city_lab is using 3D laser scanning to analyse the architectural logic of Brazil’s favelas.

Called Favelas 4D, the project used a 3D laser-scanning technique to record detailed virtual maps of the neighbourhood of Rocinha.

The project is a collaboration between MIT Senseable City Lab and architect and urban planner Washington Fajardo, the city planning commissioner of Rio de Janeiro.

Researchers used handheld LiDAR (Light Detection and Ranging) scanners, which use laser pulses to measure distances. These recorded data points are then mapped to create a 3D virtual map of the area.

Using this data, MIT and Fajardo are able to analyse the unique morphology of Rocinha and use it to inform social policies in the city.

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