Terrestrial laser scanning has propelled recent advancements in rock slope engineering. Building models with millions of points to discretize an actual slope has provided resolutions which empower computer based analysis/measurements of rock slopes as a supplement/substitute for conventional data acquisition. Herein, we are following-up such trends at a pilot site on the M-22 highroad near Ljig (Serbia). The site is composed of stratified Cretaceous flysch sediments, traversed by several joint sets, making a convenient setting for potential failures. Prior to the kinematic analysis, modeling of the 3D surface has been performed on 1 cm resolution point cloud, obtained by Leica Scan Station 2. The 3D surface model was then mapped for the planar discontinuities, forwarded to the kinematic analysis for planar, wedge and toppling failures. The analysis matches with previous findings, indicating that the most dominant failure type is a planar slide, showing that proposed methodology yields reliable and concurrent results.
Recent development in terrestrial laser scanning technology has resulted in advancements in numerous engineering branches, and rock slope engineering is one representative example. Collecting spatial information on millions of points, usually called point clouds has found its use in modeling of actual slopes and allowed high-resolution, computer-based analysis as a supplement/substitute for conventional field data acquisition (Tonon & Kottenstette 2006, Kemeny & Turner 2008).
There are a number of benefits in using point clouds as discrete models of the rock slopes:
they enable more objective and more accurate measurements (of distances, areas, volumes) and mapping (of planar and linear structures) on accessible and inaccessible slope parts (high and steep rock faces)
high-precision cross-sections and contour lines, which are for instance required in stability analysis, can be obtained.
advanced visualization of slopes and objects on them.
the models (saved in digital form) are available for reuse at any time with no additional expenses, unlike the field investigation revisits
they provide a very good base for the monitoring of the particular slope sites, where each change can be accurately determined and interpreted or predicted.
On the other hand, the drawbacks could be recognized in the following: