Lumi Industries is working on a rather strange 3D visualizer.
We’ve written about the Italian 3D printer company in the past, but apparently they’re working on something quite different: a 3D visualizer.
We were able to view a prototype of the system recently, which is able to show a true, 3D representation of a 3D model. When I say, “true”, I mean that you can walk around it and your view is the same as if it were a solid object.
The system is capable of showing full colors, although the prototype did not do so when we encountered it. We were told the system could “highlight parts” if required.
But how does it work? It’s tricky to explain. I attempted to capture a video of the system in operation, but it did not really portray what you see in real life for some reason.
The system uses a thin moving plate that very rapidly moves up and down. This plate is then briefly illuminated by a light engine as it moves up and down. By timing the light emissions to synchronize with the position of the plate, Lumi Industries is able to project sections of a 3D model.
Of course, the plate is moving so fast that you can’t really see it. But your brain does see the illuminations and pieces them together to form the impression of a true 3D object.
We saw only a prototype, but Lumi Industries seems to have big plans for this system, including a possible system for inclusion in automobiles. They also say the viewing system can be scaled up to much larger sizes. While it’s not yet a product, they’re thinking the price could be in the €3,000 range (USD$3,600).
As a product for the 3D printing space, I’m not sure this is something that would sell very well, as most people in the industry already have plenty of 2D visualizers for 3D objects embedded in software, etc.
Where this device may find more use is in situations where 3D information is useful and no conventional 2D viewing systems of 3D objects are available. So perhaps automobiles is the right place for this.
But we don’t know yet, as this is only a prototype and more than likely their customers will invent new uses for this unusual technology. We do now know that they will be exhibiting this at CES (Booth 52443 Sands, if you happen to be there) and they're apparently going to launch a Kickstarter campaign for this device soon. Check the link below for details.
Via Lumi Industries