Luke Jumper, assistant professor of Drafting & Computer-Aided Design (CAD) Technology, is working towards providing a new way to help Lewis and Clark CAD students further understand architecture, as well help express creativity through 3D printing.
Scanning an object creates a digital 3D model of the object on a computer. Then, by using specific software programs, and filling the 3D printer with the necessary materials to form the object, an item can be replicated.
L&C professors Jumper and Scott Hudson, are putting to use this 3D technology with plans to replicate a person as a miniature figure.
Jumper and Hudson will be using 3D technology to copy entire rooms, in an attempt to give architecture students a new way of learning and interacting with projects.
This goal can be achieved by using a 3D scanning program called Skanect, and a modified Kinect from the Xbox 360 to serve as the scanner. The combination of the Skanect program and the Kinect allow Jumper and Hudson to scan complex objects and print in higher resolutions to make items more life-like.
“I think it’s very interesting to hear about this project, 3D printing is still fairly new, but it’s an amazing thing that already has made a major impact in various fields. The potential for innovation is almost limitless in helping us further understand how we can further improve architecture, as well as help improve and make things less costly,” Eric Ostendorph, Computer Networking and Administration major said.
The technological community has found various useful ways of manipulating the original function of the Xbox Kinect despite its poor motion detecting capabilities.
In Jumper’s case, altering the Kinect firmware, which is a program embedded within the device, can be useful for 3D printing by scanning objects.
“Even though the Kinect was originally used for just gaming, we in the CAD community, as well as many other fields of work have found many uses for it besides gaming.The power of the Kinect’s camera is almost on par with an actual 3D scanner that costs way more. [This] helps improve other technologies outside gaming we use in our everyday lives,” Jumper said.
To learn more about Jumper’s 3D experiment at L&C, he can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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