How does it work?
This modelling technique involves capturing a physical object and transforming it into a 3D digital file. To do this, we rely on contactless scanning sensors.
By measuring the positioning of a point cloud, these devices are able to analyze the volumes, colours, and textures of objects. Then, with the aid of computer software, the result of the image capture immediately appears on the screen. It then becomes possible to save the file in the form of a synthetic image and use it according to your needs. 3D scanning very faithfully reproduces all the details of the object, in addition to creating a high-definition file.
We can therefore say that this is an innovative technique that lets you observe and transform the object in question, regardless of its shape and size, before moving on to the very specific manufacturing steps.
There are many fields where 3D scanning may prove useful – in particular, the arts, geology, restoring objects, product development, creating moulds and custom objects, and reverse engineering.
The first use worth noting: manufacturing prototypes. During the design process of an object, it’s necessary to create a piece that will serve as a model from which to work during the research and development period. The prototype is often used over the course of a new product’s development or quality control phases.
This model allows you to test several concepts of the same object and make modifications without having to go through complex procedures. Changes can be made to the 3D image using different software. The alterations are therefore temporary and can be revised until you achieve the optimal result.
3D scanning has quickly been adopted by visual artists, particularly sculptors. Previously, these artists would have to spend days – even weeks – building models out of wax, clay, plaster, or wood. With the tools and software that are currently available, this same model can quickly be created from a drawing or mock-up of any size.
Modelling is also often used in creating video games, in architectural plans, and on film sets. In this case, the real object is designed to become a virtual object. The next steps are completed entirely on computer.
Previously, creating models required a great deal of time and money. With the technological tools available these days, this procedure has become very fast indeed. This phase, which many artists perceive as being the least stimulating part of the creative process, is therefore virtually eliminated, and you can quickly move on to the next steps.
The demand for custom objects has increased considerably over the last few years. In the past, adapting an object to suit particular needs generally involved a complex process that was costly in both time and money. The field of dentistry is a good example. Using a digital scanner, it’s possible to create very precise models dedicated to the production of custom orthotics or prosthetics.
This property also proves very useful in many industrial fields, including transportation and architecture.