Archive for the ‘Blog’ Category

The future is bright for 3D scanning

Posted on: June 14th, 2019 by Steven No Comments

It may be in its infancy, but the 3D scanning market is growing at a tremendous rate and according to recent research, is expected to close in on a worth of $6 billion by the end of 2020. Much of this progression is the result of advancements in technology in manufacturing and quality assurance and the growing use of 3D scanners in more industries. Scanning offers the benefit of lower manufacturing costs whilst maintaining high-quality output. It is this combination that has made 3D scanners a priority investment for so many businesses in recent years, and this trend is only expected to continue. It is no surprise that 3D scanning has become such an attractive proposition for manufacturing businesses when it is anticipated that the technology will eventually reduce the cost of manufacturing processes by 75%! Evidence of this shift is no more apparent than in design industries. 

3D scanning is extremely useful during the beginning of the design phase where an object is scanned and converted to a CAD file. The ability to create 3D models greatly improves the accuracy of a design and thus, reduces the changes of a rework. Not only this, scanning using CAD software allows outdated models to be re-designed and re-built with relative ease. It is no surprise then that 3D scanning made its name in industries where design is such a focal point of business. Indeed, much of its early growth materialised in these industries and crucially, there is no sign of this stopping even in years to come. Design is still regarded as the main driver for this monumental growth we see today and still, there is more expected. 

There is no doubt that whilst it is still in its early stages, the 3D scanning market has a very bright future ahead. Not only are more industries turning to scanning for manufacturing and quality purposes, but the constant advancements in technology will continue to improve its effectiveness and adaptably in new and existing industries. 

Manchester Metrology is an industry-leading metrology company offering an extensive choice of metrology equipment for hire. Manchester Metrology supplies a wide range of 3D trackers and 3D laser scanners, including FARO technologies: FARO Arm, FARO Edge, FARO Focus and Focus Gage. For support and advice post-purchase, the highly skilled engineers at Manchester Metrology provides FARO arm training and calibration services to ensure consumers get the best of their metrology equipment. New to the Manchester Metrology product range is the Creaform HandySCAN, a new generation of handheld scanners that have been optimised to meet the needs of product development and engineering professionals on the lookout for the most effective and reliable way to acquire 3D measurements of physical objects.

In addition to equipment hire, Manchester Metrology also offers a range of used metrology equipment for sale that can be accompanied with the latest software and training if necessary. To find out more about Manchester Metrology’s equipment range and services call 0161 637 8744 or click here.Manchester Metrology also accepts demo requests for any of their metrology equipment, these can made here.

The use of 3D scanning in Industry

Posted on: April 29th, 2019 by Steven No Comments

From prototyping to quality assurance, the use of 3D scanning has become an integral part of the manufacturing process. As models continue to become more advanced, the influence of 3D scanners on various industries is noticeably increasing as entire processes change to incorporate these extraordinary devices. This article is going to look at some examples of the use of 3D scanning across multiple industries, starting with prototype design:

Prototype design

With the use of a 3D scanner, designers can convert a physical object on a scanning pad into a digitalised model on their screen in just a matter of seconds. A number of 3D scanners on the market today also have the capability to rotate the object to scan at a 15-deg tilt. Once the object has been scanned, it can be edited and 3D-printed to create a physical product.

Digital Tailoring

There’s a myriad of reasons to scan the human body, and some have nothing to do with the healthcare industry. Clothing manufacturing companies for example have been known to utilise 3D scanning over the years. Companies such as Nike and Cornell have teamed up in the past to test the fitting of T-shirts and shorts by scanning participants in the clothing and then filling out a survey. Such tests enable Cornell to meet their made-to-measure research that focuses on the growing trend of customisable apparel.

Quality Insurance

3D scanners allow for the analysis of height, roughness, curvature and warpage. A circuit board manufacturer for example would find this particularly useful as 3D scanners can allow for batch analyses to be performed with multiple samples simultaneously, all whilst under the same conditions. With this, the data can be compared with CAD data to quantify surface shape variances.

Crime Scenes

Moving away from manufacturing, the use of 3D scanners in criminal investigations is increasing with devices allowing for detailed models of crime scenes, car crashes, footprints and fingerprints to be created and analysed. This innovation is also being used by police departments to create architectural models of buildings, allowing teams to plan building raids using a visual and accurate model. The models created by the metrology equipment have also been presented in court rooms across the world, allowing juries the opportunity to visualise a crime scene when making decisions surrounding a case.

Manchester Metrology is an industry-leading metrology company offering an extensive choice of metrology equipment for hire. Manchester Metrology supplies a wide range of 3D trackers and 3D laser scanners, including FARO technologies: FARO Arm, FARO Edge, FARO Focus and Focus Gage. For support and advice post-purchase, the highly skilled engineers at Manchester Metrology provides FARO arm training and calibration services to ensure consumers get the best of their metrology equipment.

In addition to equipment hire, Manchester Metrology also offers a range of used metrology equipment for sale that can be accompanied with the latest software and training if necessary. To find out more about Manchester Metrology’s equipment range and services call 0161 637 8744 or click here. Manchester Metrology also accepts demo requests for any of their metrology equipment, these can made here.

How do 3D laser scanners work?

Posted on: March 21st, 2019 by Steven No Comments

3D laser scanning is a technique used to capture the shape of an object using a line of laser light. The non-contact, non-destructive technology of 3D laser scanning creates “point clouds” of data from the surface of an object. These pockets of data result in a 3D file that can be saved, edited or even printed into a 3D object.
With the ability to measure minute details and capture free-form shapes, 3D laser scanning is well suited to the measurement and inspection of the most complex of geometrics. Not only do these require a substantial amount of data to be accurately represented, measuring such difficult shapes is highly impractical with the use of traditional methods.

The process of measuring and capturing an object with 3D laser scanning begins with the acquisition of data. First, an object is placed on the bed of a digitiser where a laser probe is driven around its surface using specialised software. This laser probe projects a line of laser light onto the surface of the object while 2 sensor cameras record the laser line in three dimensions as it changes distance and shape moving along the object.

The resulting data appear as “point clouds” on a PC as the laser continues on its course, capturing the entire surface of the object along the way. Depending on the object size, the process can be complete in just a matter of seconds. Up to 750,000 points can be collected per second, all with pin-point accuracy. Once the vast point cloud data files are created, they can be merged into one 3D representation of the object and post-processed with various software packages depending on the specific application. An example of which could be for inspection purposes, in particular the comparison of the scanned object to CAD nominal data. Laser scanning also constitutes as the fastest and most accurate way of acquiring 3D digital data in reverse engineering. With the help of specialised software, the point cloud data can be used to create 3D CAD models of a particular shape or a parts geometry.

Manchester Metrology is an industry-leading metrology company offering sub-contract engineering work and metrology equipment for hire or purchase. Through continuous investment into the latest metrology equipment, Manchester Metrology now offers the Einscan Pro, Cybergage 360 and Faro UK scanners such as the Faro Arm, Faro Gage and Faro Focus through specialist contract measurement services.

In addition to Manchester Metrology’s wide range of metrology equipment, it also offers metrology software packages and runs training courses for a range of metrology software programmes. Examples of metrology software covered by the team at Manchester Metrology include; Polyworks, Delcam Powerinspect, Geomagic and Spatial Analyzer. Manchester Metrology also offers a range of metrology equipment accessories including products for Faro UK technology; all products can be viewed on our online store here.

If you would like more information about any of Manchester Metrology’s services, call on 0161 637 8744 or contact us here.

3D Scanning in the medical sector

Posted on: February 13th, 2019 by Steven No Comments

The use of 3D scanning in the medical sector has only just become a widespread practice over the last few years yet its impact on patient care has been profound. These innovative devices deliver unrivalled capabilities in patient diagnosis and treatment by capturing accurate 3D measurements of the human body quickly and hassle-free. Due to the highly accurate measurements provided, patients can be properly diagnosed much earlier and receive medical products that are customised to fill their unique needs.

The use of 3D scanning in the medical sector has arguably had its greatest impact on cases when contact with the patient’s body is not possible i.e. fragile injuries. Contact remains on one of the most common methods for delivering a diagnosis therefore for cases when this is not possible, arriving at a true diagnosis can be extremely difficult. The arrival of 3D scanning has however made the treatment of vulnerable patients much easier and more accessible. With the use of non-contact scanners, medical practitioners are now able to capture measurements of a patient’s body without any form contact. This now means that patients with the most fragile of injuries can finally be diagnosed accurately and offered effective treatments that are custom to their requirements.

The use of 3D scanning has been seen to span across the entire spectrum of the medical sector. In the dental care for example, 3D scanning devices have proven useful for designing common applications such as: metal braces, mouth of teeth guards and retainers. Due to the accuracy of the scanners, these applications can be tailored to each patient to ensure effortless fitting and maximum comfort.

Even for the most severe of cases, 3D scanners have been revolutionary for patient care in hospitals. The capabilities of the most advanced scanners have opened a whole new world of opportunity for the treatment of patients that have undergone amputation. For those that require prosthetics or artificial limbs as a result of their injuries, 3D scanners can be used so that every requirement is measured with pin-point accuracy during the design phase. In addition to this, these innovative appliances are also being used to develop specially designed facemasks that can help treat patients with differing types of facial burns.

Manchester Metrology Ltd is a leading supplier of metrology equipment including 3D scanners and 3D trackers. Stocking the latest innovations in the industry, Manchester Metrology offers major metrology scanners including the Einscan Pro, the Romer Absolute Arm and FARO scanners such as the FARO Arm and FARO Edge.

In addition to metrology equipment available for hire or purchase, Manchester Metrology provides training for a range of common metrology software packages. The team of experts deliver hands-on training courses for software including Geomagic, Polyworks, CAM2 measure 10 and Delcam PowerInspect. With after-purchase services also including FARO Arm and Laster Tracker inspections as well as Portable Arm and CMM reverification, Manchester Metrology are the benchmark metrology company for customer support and service.

If you like to speak to a member of the metrology team about any of our products, contact us here or call us on 0161 637 8744.

Track Santa This Christmas Eve!

Posted on: December 13th, 2018 by Steven No Comments

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Metrology to Benefit from Change in Kilogram Measurement

Posted on: November 22nd, 2018 by Steven No Comments

Since 1889, the yardstick for measuring a ‘kilogram’ has been set by Le Grand K, a small cylinder of titanium alloy which is held in a triple locked vault. (more…)

3-D Scanning in Construction

Posted on: October 25th, 2018 by Steven No Comments

The use of 3-D scanning in the construction industry has revolutionised the way projects are being designed, planned and implemented. Their advanced capabilities are enabling construction projects to run more effectively whilst also saving companies time and money. (more…)

3D Scanning’s role in the 3D Printing Boom

Posted on: July 3rd, 2018 by Steven No Comments

3D scanning and 3D printing have never been more accessible. Lo-fi methods have brought the technologies to the masses with mobile apps and self-replicating 3D printers, bringing the costs down dramatically.

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Perfecting Packaging: 3D Scanners in the Food Industry

Posted on: May 3rd, 2018 by Steven No Comments

For any food manufacturer, finding the right packaging is equally as important as finding the tastiest recipe. (more…)

How 3D Scanning Bolsters the Safety of Driverless Cars

Posted on: March 15th, 2018 by Steven No Comments

A fundamental problem with self-driving cars lies in how the cars sense their surroundings and adapt their driving accordingly – Scanning can be used to resolve this. (more…)