A spatial sensing device mounted on an iPad, coupled with new software, lets a user produce 3-D scans of a house interior quickly and accurately.
The Occipital Structure infrared transmitter and sensor mounts to an iPad and plugs into its Lightning port, an article posted at WIRED said. Sweeping the sensor across the room gives it enough information to build a 3-D scan with an iOS app called Canvas. The scan provides a model of the space complete with distances between objects; no tape measure is required.
The equipment and software register thousands of measurements a second, the article said. The infrared sensors on the $380 device work with the camera lens on the iPad to capture depth of field and the relative positions of features in the room. The data can be submitted via the software for translation into a CAD file, a process that takes a couple of days.
Occipital co-founder Jeff Powers told the website it would take about 30 minutes to scan an eight-room house, with a per-room charge of $29 to turn the scans into a CAD. Powers said that contracting the same work to an outside firm would cost about $2,000.
The Structure sensor is made specifically for the iPad, but might be tweaked to work with other devices in the future, Powers said. A YouTube video explains how the device and software work.