World's first compact 3D printer-cum-scanner called the Blacksmith Genesis has been unveiled at the American Association Advancement of Science (AAAS) annual meeting in San Jose, California.
The 3D printer cum scanner has been developed by Nanyang Technological University's (NTU Singapore) start-up Blacksmith Group. The high tech device weighs approx 6 kgs and has a black aluminum casing. It features a 2-inch LCD display, an integrated SD-card reader, Wi-Fi and a USB connection for instant printing. It uses an innovative rotary platform for its printing and scanning that allows for true 360-degrees scanning.
Blacksmith Genesis has a resolution of 50 micrometers, and scanning of objects with its 5 megapixel camera takes only 6 minutes, making its twice as fast as other 3D scanners in the market.
The device allows users to scan any item, and then edit the digitized model on the computer and print it out in 3D, stated Lester Kok, assistant manager of NTU's Corporate Communications Office.
Kok stated, "Most 3D printers sold on the market now are not really user-friendly as their 3D models and blueprints usually have to be designed from scratch on the computer, but Blacksmith Genesis doesn't require much knowledge of 3D software."
The user friendly all-in-one 3D printer and scanner was financed through a crowd funding campaign on Indiegogo.com. The first batch of the scanner cum printer will be shipped in March to consumers who supported Blacksmith Group's crowd funding campaign. The Blacksmith Genesis is available for pre-order online for US$2,200.
Chua Chee Kai, the mentor for the Blacksmith Group, stated in a press release, “While low-cost 3D printers are accessible to the public, they are still very hard to programme and assemble. Having an affordable, high-quality 3D printer that is easy to use is what the market is missing and this is where Blacksmith Group will bridge the gap.”