The use of 3D body scanning is expanding far beyond the medical and security worlds.
The idea to recreate 3D models has been around for thousands of years. You can follow it back thousands of years to the ancient Egyptians. They would make plaster casts of mummies heads that took tremendous amounts of time.
With the invention of computers, recreating a 3D model takes far less time and offers more accurate representations.
3D body scanning has a short history spanning about 40 years. Throughout that time, 3D body scanning has evolved for a variety of uses and continuing to evolve today.
You’ll find 3D body scanning used for entertainment, healthcare, and security. And that’s only the tip of the 3D scanning iceberg.
Here’s what you need to know about the future of 3D body scanning technology.
What Is 3D Body Scanning
A 3d body scanner captures the entire human body in 3D. They create a 3D model that analyzes the body’s shape.
After the full-body scan, the 3D model shows up on a computer screen in seconds. This allows people to analyze body shape, posture, size, and more.
Depending on the scanner, you can recreate the textures and colors to create a 3D image that matches the original. Other times you can recreate a very simple mesh of lines and dots to create the human form.
But you don’t have to do an entire full-body scan. In some cases, you can do a 3D scan of a particular limb or area of the body.
Digitized versions of the 3D scanner first appear in the 1980s. During this time, small probes would touch the object, or person scanned. This was necessary to gather enough information and points to recreate an accurate 3D model.
Unfortunately, this early process was very time-consuming.
The late 1980s brought about optical technology. The only downside was the amount of storage space necessary to store the data information.
Adding sufficient storage space the primary motivation of the 1990s. As storage space grew, so did the amount of detail and information collected by 3D scanners. You could scan color and texture from the most fragile objects.
Today, 3D scanners are booming in popularity across many industries. The scanner technology is noninvasive, fast, and accurate.
3D Body Scanning for Security
Have you ever flown on a commercial airplane? If so, you’ve probably been through a 3D body scanner.
Airport security tightened up in the early 2000s to ensure flight safety for all passengers. If you go through airport security today, chances are you’ll go through a 3D scanner that checks for any prohibited items.
3D scanners for security purposes are popping up in other public areas. Courthouses, prisons, schools, and more are taking advantage of 3D body scanning to improve safety and security.
Security in prisons used to use X-ray systems to check people for contraband, but the X-rays posed a danger to the health of visitors, inmates, and correctional officers.
Medical 3D Body Scanning
The medical field relies on 3D body scanning for finding potential issues in tracking the healing process of patients.
The accuracy of 3D scanners allows doctors to create a 3D model of a limb to create custom prosthetics. This also includes creating custom braces and implants.
Doctors and medical professionals can diagnose and treat skin-related deformities and issues. 3D body scanning analyzes wrinkles, infections, and burns on the skin’s surface not seen by the naked eye This is important for burn victims where the amount of damaged skin determines the amount of medication.
One of the most popular uses of 3D body scanning is the 3D ultrasound. Soon-to-be parents can see 3D photos of their little one before he or she is born.
Design & Fashion 3D Body Scanning
The design and entertainment industries are the frontiers of 3D body scanning.
The fashion world began creating 3D concepts using a 3D body scanner in the early 2000s. Before that, designers had to create their 3D designs 2 dimensionally. Creating clothing and shoe prototypes required a lot of time and outside help.
The introduction of 3D body scanning allows designers to create accurately sized clothes and shoes while saving time. And that’s only the beginning.
Today, you can use a 3D body scanner to create your own accurately sized avatar to try on clothes and shoes while online shopping. Soon, your online shopping avatar will be able to point out problem areas to give you a better idea as to how the outfit will feel.
The use of 3D scanners in design spans across athletic and high-performance apparel. Designers and engineers can use 3D body scanning to create precision athletic shoes. 3D body scanning helps with the design and sizing of protective sports gear such as helmets, pads, and mitts.
Fitness & Health
If you have a membership to a private gym you may have used a 3D body scanner to determine your body’s composition.
Personal trainers, coaches, and fitness enthusiasts use 3D body scanning to learn about their bodies’ composition. This includes Body Mass Index, or BMI, body metrics, and posture.
3D scanners allow you to accurately track your progress and give you a better idea of the exercises that will best improve your health.
Anthropology & Forensic Sciences
More recently, forensic anthropologists use 3D body scanning to record crime scenes and human remains. The 3D scanners capture high levels of detail in bones and other evidence.
By combining 3D body scanners with other 3D scanners, forensic scientists can document an entire site in high detail. As 3D technology continues to evolve, forensic scientists will be able to solve cases more accurately and faster.
The Future Is 3D
Whether you’re into design, fitness, health, or shopping, the future is 3D. 3D body scanning is revolutionizing the fashion and entertainment industries. Soon everyone will be using 3D scanning for creating custom avatars for shopping, video games, fitness, and more.
Want to learn about more revolutionizing trends in the tech world? Check out our latest articles in our Gadgets section to stay up to date on the latest technology of today.
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