Structure Scanner Gives Your iPad 3D Scanning Capabilities
The Structure Sensor kicked off as a Kickstarter campaign in 2013 and is very close to being commercially available. The pricing has been decided and a small collection of apps are showing off what the gadget is capable of. In simplest of terms, Structure Sensor can be dubbed as an add on for iPads (laptop, desktop too if you choose to purchase the $39 USB cable, however, you’d be missing out on iPad’s camera if you do so) and can be affixed to the iPad by making use of the bracket that comes as part of the package. Four screws, tiny ones, are used to attach it, however, we are hoping that future versions won’t need screws to remain in place.
The gadget, essentially, works like a Kinect sensor. The laser projected will cover the area and objects in a mesh like (quite futuristic) assembly of dots that the camera then uses to identify shapes and distance. The gadget doesn’t have a camera of its own, yet, it is capable of fully utilizing the iPad’s camera. The gadget, as per the manufacturer’s claim, is capable of reading at 30 frames per second in VGA resolution and precision increases to millimeters if you are up close to the object. Using it is quite easy and those who have tried the units say that they became experts with the device by the time they were scanning the third item. The gadget, however, has some difficulty in tackling items that are uniformly colored.
Scanning object like this will allow you to 3D print parts later on and this could mean that you won’t have to worry about finding the right fit when a piece of equipment breaks down since you can simply 3D print the exact same item.
The only down side is the price; $399.