3D Scanning and Point Cloud Creation Improves Additively Manufactured Part Process

Scanning and inspective Additively Manufactured (AM) parts results in reduced costs, minimized iterations, and improved accuracy and quality.

As new production technologies evolve new technical challenges arise in manufacturing the best possible part. Oftentimes significant tuning of the new process is required the first time a contract manufacturer attempts production in order to understand elements such as shrinkage, surface finish and repeatability. Additive manufacturing is no exception and yet tools to track these elements for this production methodology have lagged behind. That is now changing.

Most manufactured goods follow a common process through their lifecycle to production. Design, Manufacture, Inspect is a generalized way to consider process, stages and responsibilities. Each one being key to producing high quality parts. Depending on the complexity and nature of the part being manufactured, the real workflow can have many tuning loops and feedback.

Multistage manufacturing can introduce uncertainty and process deviation which accumulate into end part results which are not accurate. Corrective investigations are challenging to perform, unless a systematic approach is taken with the proper tools

In the workflow example, Artec3D demonstrate how its Artec Space Spider & Geomagic software together provided total shape capture and analysis on 3D printed wax casting patterns and cast parts, at all stages in the design, prove out, and manufacturing process.


Refining the additively-manufactured, tool-less pattern process with 3D scanning and inspection nets improved results with minimum iterations (one) producing a 27% reduction in cost with a 10% increase in total accuracy and a reduction in finishing cost with reduced secondary machining operations.

Artec Space Spider is an ultra-high-resolution handheld 3D scanner that excels at precisely capturing small objects and complex details for dimensional inspection. With plug and play operation, Space Spider scans objects easily, without complicated preparation and extensive user training, allowing customers to digitize parts anywhere. Artec 3D’s proprietary “target free” algorithms allow the scanner to track the object by its shape and color alone with no need to apply targets to the object.

Geomagic Control X from 3D Systems is industrial metrology software which enables root cause analysis and correction for manufacturing, as 3D scan – native software, Control X is an ideal solution for metrology with portable measurement devices.

The total solution provides unique insight into successful production in a complex manufacturing process which results in greatly improved overall final part quality, accuracy, and repeatability. To read the full article click here.

For more information: www.artec3d.com