Hovermap scans the USS Midway aircraft carrier

On the 17th of January 2020, Emesent’s Jeremy Sofonia was invited by the US Navy, to USS Midway Museum, a historical naval aircraft carrier located in downtown San Diego, California.

The museum consists of the aircraft carrier Midway and houses an extensive collection of aircraft, many of which were built in Southern California. The USS Midway also houses an exhibit dedicated to the blockbuster movie ‘Midway’ that was recently released.

Having met the Emesent team late last year in Brisbane, Australia, the US Navy were interested to see Hovermap in action for a variety of use cases. One use case is generating accurate digital twins of navy vessels, and the Midway offered a great opportunity to test this. 

Using traditional scanning methods would usually have taken more than a day to capture and process data for a vessel such as the Midway. By contrast, the process took less than an hour with Hovermap. 

While conducting the scan, Jeremy was approached by one of the USS Midway Museum curators with an immediate challenge. They had acquired a 1:1 scale replica of an aircraft and needed to know if it would fit in an exhibit space. The TBD Devastator replica was used in the filming of the ‘Midway’ movie and had been donated by Lionsgate following the conclusion of filming.

In its current location, the wing tips of the plane had to be detached in order to fit, something Jeremy had to take into consideration when virtually repositioning the plane in the new Midway Movie Exhibit. Jeremy used Hovermap as a hand-held scanner, taking no more than 5 minutes to scan the entire exterior of the plane. Within this capture, there was one detached wing tip on the floor that he could also capture and scan.

He also scanned the new exhibit space where they hoped to fit the TBD Devastator. 

After processing the data he was able to take the scan from the detached wing tip on the floor and virtually place it on each side of the plane to get a realistic wing span to see if it would fit in the new location with its wings on.

The last part of the process was to virtually move the plane to the new location and to answer the question of “will it fit”? The results showed that the plane could in fact fit, even with the wings re-attached.

The US Navy and USS Midway curators witnessed the time saving Hovermap afforded.

The video below shows the aircraft in its original location without wing tips, and in the proposed new location with the complete wings.

The ability to quickly scan an area in 3D to determine if new objects or equipment will fit is extremely useful, especially where space is limited or the items have complex shapes. Examples include storing equipment on the deck of an oil rig, or fitting a new piece of machinery on a factory floor.