The Evolution of Fuel3D’s Scanner

By on January 14th, 2015 in Hardware

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We took a look at the latest version of Fuel3D’s 3D scanner. 

The company has been making much noise in the 3D printing world, as they’ve recently received significant investment and have subsequently been growing their company. 

The current version of their first product, the Scanify 3D scanner, is shown at top, while the previous version is shown here. Below you’ll see an even earlier version.

The current device is significantly less weighty than the previous and should be suitable for near-continuous use by an operator. However, it’s not likely you’d be using it for very long since the process of snapping a scan is extremely fast. The Scanify can capture a very good quality 3D image in 1/10 of a second. 

The device works by issuing six split-second flashes from its three bright LEDs. These occur from different directions, each yielding a slightly different image. The resulting images are then digested by Fuel3D’s proprietary software to create a high quality 3D image. Here you can see a scan underway, in which the subject must hold a registration tab on their chin during the capture. 

The captured images can be used for various purposes, one of which is 3D printing. Fuel3D’s software accommodates this by ensuring the 3D image is a solid 3D model suitable for printing.

While you can use Scanify to capture faces, the device is also capable of capturing other similarly-sized subjects, including organic materials such as plants, fabrics, stone and masonry. 

Most of the Fuel3D demo scans you’ll see are frontal scans, but we asked Fuel3D how you’d do a full 360 degree scan of a subject. They have an answer: they’re working on a multi-capture stitching feature that presumably they’ll include in future software versions. This would permit capture of heads instead of just faces, for example.  

The Scanify is available for pre-order today at a cost of USD$1,490. They expect to be retailing the device in Q2, “probably April”.

By Kerry Stevenson

Kerry Stevenson, aka "General Fabb" has written over 8,000 stories on 3D printing at Fabbaloo since he launched the venture in 2007, with an intention to promote and grow the incredible technology of 3D printing across the world. So far, it seems to be working!