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3D Scanners

Thor3D announces two new software bundles for Calibry 3D scanner

Russian handheld 3D scanner developer has announced two new bundles for its 3D scanning technology. The company has revealed partnerships with Californian software developers and , agreeing to provide packages of its 3D scanners with their respective software technologies. 

Users who purchase the nPowerSoftware bundle will be provided with Thor3D’s Calibry 3D scanner and nPowerSoftware’s Cyborg3D Mesh To CAD application. The other bundle also includes the Calibry 3D scanner, alongside Pixologic’s ZBrush digital sculpting tool. This bundle is aimed at digital artists, game and product designers.

Commenting on the partnership with Pixologic, Anna Zevelyov, CEO and Co-Founder of Thor3D, states: “With Calibry and Zbrush combined together, digital sculptors, artists and designers can get their projects done so much easier.”

“We continue to expand the portfolio of our bundles and are proud to collaborate with Zbrush.”

The Calibry 3D scanner. Photo via Thor3D
The Calibry 3D scanner. Photo via Thor3D

3D scanning at Thor3D

Thor3D has been developing handheld 3D scanners since 2015, when it was founded. The company operates from two sites, one in Dusseldorf, Germany, and the other in Moscow, Russia. 

Its first 3D scanner was the self-titled Thor3D, designed for scanning large and medium objects, measuring between 1 and 10 metres. Although this piece of equipment has since been discontinued,  Thor3D has gone on to release two additional 3D scanners: the Drake, and the Calibry.

The Drake 3D scanner is a wireless, handheld device launched by the company in 2016. It comes equipped with interchangeable lenses, allowing the user to capture a variety of different objects in shape and size. Its latest 3D scanner, the Calibry, was released in 2019, and first introduced at in Shanghai. Named after a hummingbird as an indication of its size and speed, the Calibry 3D scanner was created to scan historically challenging objects, and is the first offering from Thor3D to use its own proprietary 2.5 mp texture camera technology. It is capable of collecting up to 3 million data points per second, with a scanning accuracy up to 0.1mm, and produces a resolution of up to 0.3mm. Compared to the Drake, it is much lighter, coming in at just 700g to Drake’s 2.3 kg. 

In June 2019 Thor3D entered into a distribution agreement with fellow 3D scanner provider . In a mutually beneficial deal, the companies agreed to resell select products from each others’ portfolio. This included Thor3D’s Calibry scanner, and Polyga’s XTract3D software.

Drake by Thor3D
The detachable lenses, or “head” and body, of the Drake 3D scanner. Photo via Thor3D.

The software and 3D scanner bundles

With the Zbrush bundle, Thor3D aims to cut costs and speed up the workflow of designers in the entertainment and VFX industry. As this industry heavily relies on 3D modelling, the Zbrush software has been implemented in various AAA video games, like The Last of Us and God of War, and high profile films like Avatar and The Avengers. A digital sculpting tool, Zbrush differs from parametric modeling CAD tools such as Autodesk Fusion and Solidworks, in that sculpting tools treat the mesh as a clay. An object is formed by pushing, pulling and smoothing a clay-like substance in the digital environment.

Building 3D models from scratch however can often require hours of rigorous work in order to establish maximum photorealism from the models. Thor3D aims to help VFX specialists save both time and budget without compromising on the quality of the 3D models with the Calibry/Zbrush bundle. Using the Calibry 3D scanner, users can instead scan real people or objects as reference models, which can then be used and exported to Zbrush. As an example of what can be done with the bundle, Thor3D scanned one of its team members with the Calibry 3D scanner and then had the model transformed into a fantasy character.

A reference model was digitized with Calibry 3D scanner. Based on the reference, the 3D characters have been created by an artist. Image via Thor3D.
A reference model was digitized with Calibry 3D scanner. Based on the reference, the 3D characters have been created by an artist. Image via Thor3D.

On the other hand, Thor3D’s bundle with nPowerSoftware is targeting users in the automotive, orthopedics and prosthetics, and industrial design verticals. The Cyborg3D MeshToCAD software is designed for the reverse engineering of scanned meshes into CAD data. Such a task is usually considered a time consuming process, as freeform meshes have many smooth edges between individual surface elements, therefore necessitating slightly different algorithms.

The bundle allows users to create scanned meshes using the Calibry 3D scanner, which can then be processed through the Cyborg software to transform those meshes into CAD. Cyborg3D MeshtoCAD is compatible with a number of CAD programs, including SolidWorks, Solid Edge, Rhinoceros ad Autodesk Inventor.

A reverse engineered model of a foot using Cyborg. Image via Thor3D.
A reverse engineered model of a foot using Cyborg. Image via Thor3D.

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Featured image shows Calibry 3D scanner. Photo via Thor3D.

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