Benchtop 3-D Surface Scanner

Case Study

GelSight Benchtop Scanner

The Problem

Traditional surface visualization technology is prohibitively expensive for most companies. Even if within reach financially, mainstream tools do not offer the ability to reveal three-dimensional surface structure at a microscopic level rapidly.

The Solution

GelSight, an MIT spinoff, engaged Smithwise to build a product embodiment for their disruptive technology: a sensor that immediately captures the surface structure of materials smaller than the width of a human hair. Different than a scanning electron microscope (SEM), GelSight does not operate in a vacuum or require elaborate sample preparation. For imaging at the micron scale and above, GelSight captures SEM-level images with much less time, effort, and cost.

GelSight turned to Smithwise to produce multiple product prototypes on a tight timeline.

Working closely with the GelSight team to design and build a device that consistently secures a variety of material samples, Smithwise developed a robust, inexpensive, and flexible product suitable for a wide range of applications and industries, including aerospace, ballistics, and metrology.

GelSight technology is in applications as diverse as forensics analysis, robotics tactile sensing, and quality control for manufacturing.

The low-resolution, robot-mounted version of the GelSight sensor is about 100 times more sensitive than a human finger.