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3D Scanning For Virtual & Augmented Reality Applications: Challenges & Solutions

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3D scanning has made several big leaps in recent years and is poised to alter to course of how virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) is experienced. Capturing real-world, familiar objects and environments in digital form, 3D scanning allows us to create realistic and immersive VR and AR experiences that blur the lines between real and digital worlds. There are still some challenges to be worked through though to fully realise the potential of 3D scanning for VR and AR applications.

Key Challenges

One of the main challenges is scan quality. To create realistic and believable VR and AR experiences, the scans must be highly detailed and colour accurate. This requires advanced 3D scanning tech with specialised algorithms to process the data. Currently, with ‘accessible’ scanners it can be difficult to capture all of the intricate details and textures of real-world objects and environments – this will no doubt improve as the tech advances.

Another challenge is the processing power required to digitally render high-quality VR and AR scenes/objects. The amount of data generated by a 3D scan is massive, and it takes a lot of computing muscle to render this data in real-time for the user during the experience. This can be demanding for standalone VR and AR devices, which often have limited processing or graphical power and may struggle to render high-quality 3D scans at acceptable frame rates.

Solutions

A solution to this graphical limitation is to use cloud based rendering systems, which allow the processing power to be placed on multiple external servers. This can help to alleviate the demand placed on the VR or AR device and allow for more detailed and realistic experiences.

On the scan quality front, another technique in development is to use machine learning algorithms to improve the accuracy and resolution of 3D scans. Training algorithms on large datasets of 3D scans, it is possible to improve their ability to render the captured details and textures from the scans. This helps create a more believable VR and AR experience and allow a wider range of use cases.

The potential of 3D scanning in VR and AR applications is vast, and as the technology continues to evolve, we’ll see more and more realistic and immersive experiences. While there are still challenges, there are also many solutions being developed to overcome them and bring the full potential of 3D scanning and the data created to VR and AR.

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