There are many things you should know (but maybe don’t!) about 3D scanning technology. If you know just a little bit about 3D scanners and perhaps that your workplace or lab needs to acquire one, you may be uncertain where to start when it comes to window shopping and considering options. And if you will be outsourcing your 3D scanning needs, you want to know what to look for when choosing a service and the technologies offered. There are three major components of any 3D scanning technology that you should take into account when choosing a 3D scanning service to use or a 3D scanner to invest in. Those major components are speed, portability, and cost.
When it comes to choosing a 3D scanning technology, choose one that can acquire data rapidly and without hiccups. For example, white light scanners can capture over 1,000,000 points per second. That means that in just one capture shot, these scanners capture measurements from areas of just a few square inches all the way up to a few square feet. This speed and capacity allow for efficient scanning with the minimal waiting time.
Generally, with 3D scanning technology, data acquisition is going to be extremely fast. With over 1.3 million points per second of laser scanning speed and sub-second Structured light scanning speed, you can expect impressively quick physical-to-digital conversion of object data. To assess this aspect of a piece of equipment you are considering, look at specs pertaining to the capture rates and the measurements per scan. That 3D white light scanner? It has a capture rate of a fraction of a second and measurements per scan of up to 6 million.
Particularly when choosing 3D scanning technology to purchase, you will want to choose equipment with portability in mind. Thankfully, with recent developments, equipment form factors have been reduced and composite material construction has increased. With these improvements, in-field measurement and data processing have become quicker and safer.
Indeed, 3D scanning equipment can now be quite mobile, with component parts being packaged in containers so small they could fit into an overhead compartment. All of these reductions in size and packing lead to reduced shipping costs and contribute to a simplified setup at the worksite.
Additionally, when you choose a 3D scanner with portability – whether that is in the form of removable parts or an overall smaller size – you will have the option to relocate the equipment if needed in the future. This convenience can be greatly beneficial when moving worksites or simply reconfiguring as the equipment will not need to be tied to one dedicated area. Portability will also allow for potentially using the equipment at off-site locations, an option that has led to some neat applications, including recovery and restoration of historical artifacts.
Cost is of course always a factor when choosing equipment for purchase or outsourcing services. It is no different with 3D scanning technology. You have a variety of options through between purchasing an individual item, choosing a more comprehensive package, or sticking with a scanning service for one-off or first-time projects.
When it comes to purchasing individual pieces of equipment, Exact Metrology can help you choose and provide training for all users. This route is recommended if you have very precise scanning needs and understand the basics of how you or your team will be using the equipment to reach those goals.
One route for addressing your 3D scanning needs is to choose a “turn-key” package that includes both hardware and the necessary 3D scanning software. These packages can run under $100,000 and include training for all users and everything you need to start 3D scanning at your facility or lab.
As another option, you might choose to outsource your scanning project to a scanning service. If you are a first-time user of 3D technology, there are a variety of benefits to choosing a scanning service to help familiarize you with the process while ensuring that your current project turns out as solid as can be through the assistance of trained professionals.
Whether you choose to purchase your own equipment or outsource scanning services, be sure to compare the costs of each. You want to also check that you will be provided with everything you need to get the job done while also learning more about 3D scanning technology and the scanning process itself.
Contact Exact Metrology for 3D Scanning Technology Equipment & Services
At Exact Metrology, we specialize in all things 3D scanning. Not only do we sell 3D scanners but we also provide implementation, training, and a variety of other services for those scanners as well as full 3D scanning services that can meet a variety of project requirements. We are always happy to talk with you about your projects, our services, and how we can best assist you. Learn more about 3D scanning technology here.