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H2020

SCANIFY270 Report Summary

Project ID: 710384

Periodic Reporting for period 1 - SCANIFY270 (Development of a 0.2 second, low cost, high-resolution 270° 3D scanner for full face capture from a single scan to provide low cost customised eyewear)

Reporting period: 2016-03-01 to 2017-02-28

Summary of the context and overall objectives of the project

Context:
The eyewear market has evolved rapidly over the last 20 years with significant improvements in both materials used for eyewear and the manufacturing process. As a result, consumers have an ever-increasing choice of frames when selecting new eyewear. The process of fitting prescription eyewear for consumers has however not kept pace with the improvements in design, weight, durability etc. The result is that whilst a consumer in theory has a greater choice of eyewear, problems with poor fitting cause discomfort, misalignment of lenses and dissatisfied consumers returning glasses. The cost of this poor fitting is estimated to be €500m /year across the EU.

The primary reasons for poor fitting eyewear are:

Inter-pupillary distance (IPD) and the angle of the lenses (pantoscopic tilt) are paramount to delivering the correct prescription in the final eyewear product. These measurements are usually taken manually by professionals but the method of measurements and the variation in skill of the professional mean that one or both measurements are frequently inaccurate.

Current eyewear prescription methods cannot accurately cater for different facial shapes across different ethnic groups. By way of example, Chinese and Japanese people have completely different facial geometries to Europeans which presents problems for the European optician seeking to adequately serve a customer of, for example Japanese heritage, with eyewear products designed for Europeans.

Whilst IPD and pantoscopic tilt are key to a correct prescription there are many more facial geometry measures that are required to ensure a good fit for the glasses. However, these cannot currently be measured manually by ophthalmic professionals with sufficient accuracy and within an acceptable time.

Fuel 3D Technologies has identified that its proprietary 3D scanning technology can be applied to the eyewear market to capture the measurements required for both accurate prescription and custom/best fit. Discussions with the eyewear industry have confirmed that the measurement issues identified were manifest across the sector and current technologies being trialled/used were early stage and did not provide a ‘joined-up’ solution.

Overall Objectives:
Capture and process a 270-degree 3D scan of the human face - The time to capture and process is important to ensure that the process does not unnecessarily prolong the time the consumer spends with the Ophthalmic professional. The total time to scan and process should therefore be less than a few minutes.

Identify the measurements of facial geometry required to deliver a custom/best fit for an eyewear frame - This will require consideration of both geometry of the human face and the geometry and construction of the eyewear frame.

From the scanned 3D image, accurately calculate the IPD and pantoscopic tilt measurement, and other facial geometry measures required for custom/best fit.

Identify the end to end solution for the consumer from scan to selection of eyewear and ultimate delivery of the eyewear to the customer.

Develop solution from prototype to commercial product including collaboration with appropriate partners to deliver the end to end solution.

The solution should enable eyewear manufacturers and/or retailers to improve the experience of the consumer in purchasing eyewear, reducing dissatisfaction and returns, potentially reducing inventory held and an opportunity to offer consumers a premium service at a higher price.

Work performed from the beginning of the project to the end of the period covered by the report and main results achieved so far

An advisory panel with representation from all parts of the eyewear industry and eyewear innovators was set up and met at SILMO, a leading eyewear event, in Paris on 24 September 2016.

A prototype 180-degree 3D scanner has been developed for the eyewear industry incorporating a mirror and is currently being tested in the Netherlands as part of a trial solution.

Utilising the feedback from the 180-degree scanner tests the 270-degree 3D scanner system is being designed. An early prototype 270-degree scanner has been built, housed within a wrap-around rig, and is currently undergoing testing. The 270-degree scan enables full facial measurement including the location and geometry of the ears.

Software applications to process the images captured are in development including the ability to automatically crop and stitch multiple scans.

A partner has been identified to enable consumers to virtually try on different frame designs using the 3D scanned images.

Progress beyond the state of the art and expected potential impact (including the socio-economic impact and the wider societal implications of the project so far)

Image capture from the prototypes has been faster than originally anticipated enabling greater motion compensation, particularly when scanning a moving organic subject such as a face.

Early trials have indicated an appetite for custom manufacturing within eyewear and a curiosity of the optician’s customer to purchase brands outside of the mainstream, allowing for greater competition and consumer choice. Additionally, the advances in custom manufacturing techniques combined with the 3D scanning technology will make it increasing cost effective to provide bespoke eyewear solutions for medical purposes (facial irregularities) and for specific occupations (e.g. dealing with Hazardous materials) and sports.

The 3D scanning solution will also make it more commercially attractive for eyewear manufacturers to meet the needs of a wider ethic customer base (with different facial geometric characteristic), increasing inclusivity and providing wider choice.

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