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Q-PLUS Labs' Case Study: Creosote Bush Scanning for Harvard University Graduate School

Posted by Mike Knicker on Sep 23, 2014 10:00:00 AM

Q-PLUS Labs Case Study: Creosote Bush


This unique scanning project came to Q-PLUS Labs as a result of a client needing a 3D scan of a creosote bush’s root system for his graduate project.

The creosote roots initially posed a challenge to scan due to the irregular geometry of their structure. Q-PLUS Labs’ engineers were faced with the mission of accurately scanning this organic form while mainly concentrating their efforts on scanning the center of the root system.

Our Process

The scanner must be able to project a light grid which creates a target platform for the camera to capture the image. The two work together to digitize the entire image to create the scan. However, due to the freeform of movement of the roots combined with the depth of the bark’s many crevices, this project posed a difficult target surface to scan.

The engineers at Q-PLUS Labs began the process by stabilizing the root system at the base and maintained a static scanning environment which required carefully maneuvering the scanner around the suspended object. Trimming back the roots to get the base of the root system also demanded scans at multiple angles.

The final step involved intensive surfacing which called for creative approaches and commitment to quality. The small geometry plus high levels of curvature on the many root tendrils made surfacing very complicated making attention to every detail imperative for the integrity of the completed scan.

Project Features

  • Intensive surfacing process
  • Organic thin and winding shape
  • Scanned using many camera angles
  • Creative & detail oriented scanning techniques


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Topics: 3D scanners, 3D Scanning