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Remove object from point cloud and replace with surface to cover hole

My issue:
I had a vehicle in a parking lot that could not have been moved while capturing images. The resulting point cloud is great but I have been asked to remove the vehicle for various reasons.

My attempts:
I assigned the points created from the vehicle as “disabled”, but when I do so, I am presented with a “hole” in parking lot due to removing the vehicle points that were covering the parking space - not a great option in this situation.

I then created a new surface at the parking lot level (surface) that encompasses the vehicle, thinking that I could somehow assign that new surface as the parking lot space to include the color assigned to the remainder of the parking lot points.

My questions:
Is there any way to “create” points within the point cloud in a scenario such as this? I would like to create a surface to cover the missing points that were under the vehicle. The “surface” would be a blanket of null value points that would be cosmetic only?
I have edited orthomosaics in the past by swapping images and essentially removing the vehicle but that is by means of swapping photos where there was no vehicle present - different story.

Our intended deliverable would be a merge of this point cloud and a compiled Leica laser scan for 3D modeling purposes.

I have read help files and forums and watched videos and have not been able to find a solution, assuming that there may be a solution. Thank you.


Hi @michaelctaylor,

Oh. They have no mercy on you, right? :wink:

The surfaces in Pix4D affect only the DSM and 3D Textured Mesh. Afterwards, while for instance removing trees, the model is flat, but the trees are still visible, as they remain on the images, and the content gets projected on the model. Look at this example:

  1. Delete the points from the dense point could. Note that the ATPs are not subject to point-assignment. You cannot remove them.

  2. Draw a surface, covering the hole.

  3. Add the surface to your DSM and Mesh results by applying the Use for DSM and Triangle Mesh option .

  4. Click Process > Generate 3D Textured Mesh.

  5. As a result, in the place of the hole, the software will project content from images. However, the ground surface will be flat, without the trees.

So you can’t use the surfaces to create raster out of them.

What I can think of is to use Mask, the annotation tool. Learn more in How to Annotate Images in the rayCloud. As a result you will still have a hole in the Point Cloud, but the car won’t be visible on the 3D Textured Mesh neither on the Ortho. Another idea I have is to remove the vehicle on the images in third-party software like Photoshop. However, be careful with the geolocation of the image after you save it as far as I remember that software removes it from the EXIF.

I hope it helps.

Good luck!


What a fantastic answer!

I did read about the annotate tool prior to post but it didn’t seem to be the “best” solution, I may need to revisit.

I like the last suggestion. Brilliant out of the box idea.

I can copy the EXIF info and replace if necessary.

If I can pull that off, I will post my work flow and results.

Thank you!

1 Like

Thank you for your nice reply :star_struck:

Let me know how it goes,