3D printing has grown in capability significantly in recent years, with projects using the technology to print things as complex as bridges and houses.  A recent project by a Teeside University based company is using the technology to allow people to print out something altogether more intimate however.

The company has created a scanning booth to allow people to scan family members, loved ones or even their favourite pet, with that image then being used to create a miniature model using a 3D printer.

The company has already reached out into the marketplace with their idea with a concession in the Fenwick department store in Newcastle upon Tyne offering the service during the Christmas period.

Inside the booth

The 3D scanning booth used by the company utilises over 100 digital cameras to capture various parts of the subject simultaneously, with the whole process taking the same time as that of a regular passport process.

The image goes from the booth into 3D rendering software, before it’s then printed layed by layer by a powerful 3D printer where it’s constructed in a high quality sandstone effect composite that aims to capture every detail of the subject, from their clothing to their facial expression.

The initial signs are that the technology is a hit with the public, and there are plans to expand into different outlets throughout the country.

“By using the latest 3D technology and the best 3D artists, we’re able to construct figurines that are extremely lifelike and incredibly detailed,” founder Behzad Parniani says. “The technology offers endless possibilities and is already proving incredibly popular.”

As a resident at Teeside University, the company received significant support to help get it off the ground, including the use of facilities at the university and support from the enterprise team.

“The University has been a fantastic source of help and advice,” Behzad says. “The support I received from the University enabled me to take the business to the next level.”

If you would like to work with The Forge, please feel free to contact us today.