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back to article Investors throw cash at affordable 3D scanner

Proof that the 3D bandwagon continues to gain pace comes with the news that Fuel 3D Technologies has secured a suitcase full of private investor cash to further fund "the world's first 3D scanner to combine pre-calibrated stereo cameras with photometric imaging". Rendering of the Fuel3D The Fuel3D: Coming soon to a hand near …

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Coat

Oh dear, 3D selfies...

I hate to think what's going to happen at office parties now. Sitting on the photocopier and scanning your arse was bad enough...

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Re: Oh dear, 3D selfies...

And once round-tripped through the office 3D printer, a charming memento of the office party for every colleague's desk - a little model your arse (congealed from the purest green, my lord!). Perhaps they'll use the cleft as a business card archive.

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Re: Oh dear, 3D selfies...

I was at a trade show in Brum about 5 years ago when a representative from a well known American metrology company used one of their laser scanners to surreptitiously measured the rear end of one of the models unreconstructed engineering companies still employ to staff booths. She didn't realise for quite a while that the 3d surface rendering on all the 42" plasma screens was her arse.

She wasn't pleased.

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I've seen this before.

Isn't that the 'holo-imager' from Star Trek?

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More technical information is here:

http://www.fuel-3d.com/files/Fuel3D_Whitepaper_1.0.pdf [!! .PDF !!]

Even more technical info - it has equations and everything:

http://carlos-hernandez.org/papers/icvss_chapter2010_photometric.pdf

There is software available that can create - with some human intervention - 3D models from photographs, but it relies on the cameras being calibrated (lens aberrations will throw it off the scent) and work better for obkects that aren't moving. Moving objects can be captured, but that requires several cameras to synchronised. The cheapest way to do that is probably with some low-end Canon compact cameras, since many models support the use of a temporary firmware, CHDK, which allows home-made remote shutter releases to be used.

AutoDesk also have a service where you can upload a series of 2D photographs, and receive back a 3D model.

Personally, I'm tempted to wait and see how well Intel's upcoming 'RealSense' scanner performs - it's likely to be far cheaper than this, though aimed at a different market.

Ideally, I'd like a 3D scanner to be able to give positional feedback to a 3D printer during the printing process - i.e automate the axis calibration process and correct for any errors that occur.

For 'scanning' shiny things (machined metal) to a very high level of accuracy, you want want of these probes from the British company Renishaw (oh, and an expensive CNC machine to mount it on):

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JPFB7NiW0UY

Another of their probes was featured 4:57 the iPhone 5 video, without Renishaw knowing about it - it's rare for Apple to featured a branded object that isn't theirs in their marketing.

(The fancy house featured in the latest episode of Sherlock was built by Renishaw's founder)

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I've got one of the Matterform scanners on order which suits my needs perfectly but I can see the appeal of this one too. It may end up being a purchase later down the line. Its always nice to have more options.

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Go

3D copier on the way?

Combine a 3D scanner with a 3D printer and you have a 3D copier.

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With Macro

3d scan of fingerprints anyone?

Not that they would be of any use at all..

Just waiting for the first bank job where the perp was "the spitting image of the bank manager" or on camera speeding tickets where the drivers all look like the local chief constable.

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It wont happen

estate agents have got too much invested in bullshit to allow 3D representations of property to be available.

I guess they will have to get governments to make it illegal on the ubiquitous 'terrorists...'

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Anonymous Coward

Re: It wont happen

Uh... People are already doing it, using Oculus Rifts for walkthroughs. I'm not sure how they're getting data, but the end result is similar.

Regardless, this isn't new tech; it's a more friendly and cheaper version of existing stuff. I know that delusional cynicism is de rigeur to position yourself as a member of the enlightened few, but really, let's try to at least keep it plausible, shall we?

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