Alessandro Grossi developed this DIY 3d scanner. The primary ingredients in this project are readily available and include a line laser, an Arduino, stepper motor, stepper motor driver (up to 12800 steps), 12V power supply, IR LED and a digital SLR camera. While he wrote the image processing script for Matlab, he notes that it should also be portable to GNU Octave.
The principle behind this scanner is the typical one of a line scanner. A laser beam intercepts the body to be measured and a camera, positioned at a known angle and distance shoots a series of images. With some trigonometry considerations and optics law is relatively easy to reconstruct the Zeta dimension, the measure of the distance between the body and the camera.
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