This is a 3D scanner from Faro.  Spec sheet and brochure and videos can be found at the distributor web site ATS.  This is a video of the scanner on a Lego trolley, so how long until we have something this good on a quad for automated object avoidance and landing???  Engadget article can be found here.


How much processing power do we think it would take to use hardware of this calibre??

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  • Yep, these things are shrinking and what is processing challenging today will be no more sooner than later (I've just seen Beagleboard running OpenCV, quite impressive)

  • Yep - it is still heavy, but compared to the one Google used in their car, this thing is tiny, and collects equivalent data.  I suspect it will take some pretty serious processing horsepower as well, but just thought it was really interesting conceptually.

  • The amount of data that laser scanners put out is fairly large. I have used a Faro Arm with a 2d laser scan head, and the quantity of data slows down the computer pretty fast (not the greatest laptop though, couple years old). I can only imagine how much data a 3d scanner puts out. I don't know how they post process the data, but using the 2d scanner with Geomagic (one program in the list on the spec sheet) is not particularly easy when looking to get accurate, clean results (I use it in an inspection/reverse engineering capacity, most recently to create a model of a DSLR for designing a gimbal). The data processing time is unfortunately rather extensive. In a mapping/avoidance application, this may be less problematic.

  • Interesting but just a note: weight is 5Kg

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