Skip to main content

3D Scanning using Artec 3D Scanner

How to use the 3D scanning equipment in the Innovation Lab

Basics when using the Align Tool

Using the alignment feature can be beneficial in using multiple aspects of a model to be combined in such a way as to develop a more complete model.

Let's begin by using the scenario of aligning multiple scans of a single object:

  1. If you have multiple scans in the workspace pane, select those scans by clicking to the left of the colored square of that represents that model to toggle the "eye" icon which makes scans visible/invisible. When visible, those are the scans that you are working with.
  2. These scans can be full scans of the model or partial scans. Scans will have a different X,Y, Z orientation to each other. As long as they are of the same object, the "Align" tool will do its best to combine them into one scan.
  3. Click on the "Align" tool on the left side toolbar.
  4. On this toolbar, you can choose "Auto-alignment" to have the program orient your scans to each other.
  5. If you like the resulting combination, click "Apply" in the bottom left corner or "Cancel" if you don't want to commit the changes.
  6. If choosing "Cancel" and you still want to align and have more than 2 scans you are combining, you can Align fewer scans in order to build up your combined model at a slower, more controlled pace.
  7. If choosing "Cancel" and you want to align the scans manually, then select "Align" again.
  8. Upon wanting to manually align, you can do this two different ways:
    1. The models are represented in the lower left pane as a faded blue scan and one to several green scans. Each one can be selected individually and moved except for the faded blue scan. That scan is the base model and will stay immobile. For each green scan you can alter its orientation by a combination of holding down the SHIFT key plus a Mouse Button click. Playing around with the mouse buttons will allow you to orbit, pan, and zoom in and out to better align your green scan layer with the faded blue scan.
    2. There is also the method of creating pairs of points. This method should be done with no more than two scans selected for alignment. To start you click on "New Pair" and you can make up to 3 sets of pairs that link the surface point of one scan to the similar point on another scan. You do not need to click "New Pair" before every pair of points. For instance, in the Bowser character in the below video, pairs were introduced on the scans to link the corner of a palm, a point on the cheek and an eyebrow to "guide" the program to join those similar points between the two scans.
  9. And once again, after you've oriented your scans the way you like, click "Apply" to commit those changes.

 

The other method is for aligning scans that are derived from a single scan.

  1. Let's say you have a single scan and use a previously described method of breaking down the scan into smaller pieces by taking certain selected frames and "move to a new scan". For instance, breaking down a scan of a human face into a left, center, and right portion. By doing this you are creating a separated scan with which there will most likely be some slight overlap which will help in aligning it if need be. Separating scans in this way can sometimes make the editing or cleaning up process easier.
  2. To begin select your scans in the workspace pane. Select those scans by clicking to the left of the colored square that represents the scan to toggle the "eye" icon which makes scans visible/invisible. When visible, those are the scans that you are working with.
  3. Click on the "Align" tool on the left side toolbar.
  4. On this toolbar, you can choose "Auto-alignment" to have the program orient your scans to each other. If you like the resulting alignment, click "Apply".
  5. But as these scans might have a limited amount of shared surfaces, manual alignment will probably be more necessary.
  6. If manually aligning the scans, creating "New Pair" would be the best scenario for correcting the orientation for all the scans involved.
  7. If having more than two scans selected and are manually creating a "New Pair" click "Cancel" at the lower left part of the screen and select ONLY two scans to start with from the workpane on the right. Then return to the "Align" tool on the left side toolbar.
  8. Click "New Pair" and try to create up to 3 pairs of points that will identify the shared surfaces between these scans.
  9. Then click "Align".
  10. If you like the resulting alignment, click "Apply". If not, click "Cancel" and retry your alignment using a different set of pairs.
  11. If you have more than 2 scans that you are aligning, then in the workspace, choose any one of the scan you have just aligned first and then the additional scan second so that when you use the align tool again, it will make the first clicked scan the faded blue scan, which is the immobile one. Then repeat steps 8 through 10 to continue aligning.

Video Tutorial

Have a question? Ask a librarian! Call or text 386-747-9028.