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3D Data Capture
Most people are very familiar with the process of scanning 2D images to convert them to digital data that can be manipulated on the computer. But they are less familiar with scanning 3D objects to attain 3D digital data that can be manipulated on the computer. The 3D area of the Studio offers an array of 3D scanning devices that scan objects of various sizes in various ways. You can bring in an object to be scanned, scan yourself, or sculpt an object out of clay and scan that. Objects are, in effect, measured or imaged three dimensionally, and then those measurements or images are translated into points that are placed in a virtual 3D space. On the computer, the points become vertices that can be connected by segments to create a "skin" or "surface" of triangles and squares that are the digital equivalent of the surface of the object that was scanned. Some scanning processes result in a very detailed digital model, while others capture only the primary features of objects. Once an object has been scanned and converted into a digital model (usually an .stl file), that file can be imported into 3D modeling applications to enable further cleanup or manipulation (cut, scaled, twisted, bent, combined with other models, etc.). Then the model can be output to a rapid prototyping machine, animated with 3D animation software, or shaded, textured, rendered, and printed as a 2D image.
3D Data Capture Procedures
1. Sign up for a 3D scanning session (sign ups are offered one day in advance and on a first-come, first-served basis).
2. Pick up a work slip when you check in and bring something to be scanned: an object, yourself, or and object that you modeled in clay in the hands-on area of the Studio.
3. Complete the scan.
4. Scanned data will be placed in a folder on the 3D server, where it is accessible from any of the 3D workstations. From there, the scanned data can be manipulated and prepared for rapid prototyping, 2D printing, or animation.
5. If you would like your object file written to CD, check the 3D Data CD box on the work slip and follow the instructions there.
6. If you would like your object rapid prototyped, check the 3D Model box on the workslip and follow the 3D Rapid Prototyping Procedures.
7. If you would like a 2D print of your work, refer to the 2D area.
8) If you would like to animate your object, refer to the Animation area.

3D Data Capture
3D Modeling
3D Rapid Prototyping
3D Tutorials