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ELCOVISION 10 / PMS AG History

The following is a brief overview of the history of ELCOVISION 10 and PMS AG and its products.

1986

ELCOVISION 10 is launched by Wild Leitz Heerbrugg, today Leica Geosysteme AG, as Ernst Leitz Coordinate Vision 10 as the world's first 3D photogrammetry system for PCs:

In versions 1-4, digitising tablets were used for the image measurements: the photos were developed into paper prints and glued onto the digitising tablet. With the help of réseau measurement, the errors caused by film distortion were compensated for.

The system camera used was the factory-modified Leica R5 ELCOVISON 35 mm camera: it was equipped with a bayonet manufactured to tighter tolerances and a 5*7 réseau grid plate:

The lenses were fitted with locking rings so that the focus could be fixed and calibrated for close-up and infinity.

From 1992, the inexpensive Ricoh KR-10M 35 mm camera with a 3*3 réseau grid plate and the Pentax 67 medium format camera with an 11*13 réseau grid plate for higher accuracy requirements were also offered as system cameras.

1987

Version 2 of ELCOVSION 10 is released. A much improved bundle adjustment has been implemented.

1990

PMS Photo Mess Systeme AG is founded in St. Margrethen (SG) and takes over the development and distribution of ELCOVISION 10.

1991

ELCOVISION 10 Version 3: First ELCOVISION 10 with CAD Plugin for AutoCAD: AutoCAD R11 becomes 3D photogrammetry workstation.

The image rectification ELCOVISION ELSP was released:


Up to version 4 of ELCOVISION 10 the image rectification was a stand-alone product, from version 5 it was a stand-alone product and an optional module in ELCOVSION 10. Additionally images could now be digitally rectified. From ELCOVISON 10 version 9 onwards it has been replaced by a small full version of ELCOVISION 10, with which one can then additionally calibrate the camera and compensate for lens distortions.

1992

ELCOVISION 10 Version 4: First 32 bit MSDOS version of ELCOVSION 10 with Windows-like graphical user interface. The Zinc Application Framework was used for the graphical user interface. ELCOVISION 10 version 4 can orientate images and has its own graphical evaluation: a simple CAD ("ELCad") with which 2D and 3D drawings can be created and 2D and 3D DXF files can be read and written:

1993

ELCOVISION 10 Version 5: First 16 bit Windows 3.11 version with support for digital images. This version is at the same time a step backwards and a step forward: It is only a 16 bit version of the software, there was no 32 bit Windows yet, at the same time a step forward because now digital images can be used. Therefore, until the release of the 32 bit version ELCOVISION 10 version 6, version 4 of ELCOVISION 10 continued to be distributed in order to be able to calculate large photo blocks. The réseau measurement is automated. 

1995

ELCOVISION 10 Version 6: First 32 Bit Windows version for Windows NT 3.51/NT4.0. The software was thoroughly revised, the project window which was only rudimentary in version 5 now received almost its current functionality.
The flowing measuring magnifier was supplemented by the static measuring magnifier.
Epipolar lines and measurement suggestions made the work easier.
The réseau measurement of digitised analogue images was fully automated.
Digital cameras became more and more available, so a fully automatic assignment of CCD sizes for digital images was built in.
Digital rectification has been greatly improved, for example, rectification planes can now be defined directly via 3D points.
The Global Orientation was revised and now allows simultaneous calibration during the orientation of the images.

1999

ELCOVISION ELTheo Version 1 released.

2005

ELCOVISION Forensic Version 1 released.

ELCOVISION 10 Version 7: First photogrammetry software worldwide that could orientate freehand captured images fully automatically, first 64 bit version of ELCOVISION 10.

2009

THEO Online is released. With this very slimmed down version of ELTheo, measurements from specific theodolites can be transferred to any programme.

2010

ELCOVISON 10 Version 7.2: First ELCOVISON 10 with CAD Plugin for BricsCAD: BricsCAD V10

2011

ELCOVISON 10 for Leica Viva/Nova is released. This allows 3D measurements with the images of the new Leica TS15I.

2012

ELCOVISION 10 Version 8 is released.

2019

ELCOVISION 10 Version 9 is released. Very fast very robust fully automatic orientation of images and generation of high quality point clouds from images.

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