Meshing Dark and Black Surfaces

Anyone have any advice on getting the meshing to function better when scanning dark and black surfaces? I know this was a problem with the ML1. I was surprised to see that it had not been addressed with the ML2. I've got a project that requires mapping an area where much of the walls are black? Is this project doomed? Or are there some clever lighting techniques that I can employ, such are using really bright lighting or different color temperatures or just different colored lights altogether? Any help would be appreciated. Thanks!

Hi @rscanlo2,

I have reached out to our team regarding scanning dark/black surfaces and I will report back to you as soon as we uncover potential workarounds. Are any lighting setups more effective than others? Even if they are not fully functional?



I have not attempted and additional setups yet. I was looking for advice first before experimenting on my own, especially if it is going to require me to purchase some lighting devices. I am hoping to go on a "site visit" soon where I may be able to test some rudimentary lighting options on the real world conditions where this project will actually be used. But that may be a few weeks out. I'd rather have some suggestions from the experts in hand first.

Okay for sure. That totally makes sense. I'll let you know what our team is thinking regarding this issue as soon as I hear back. Do you know how the lighting is already set up in the room by default?



This is going to sound odd, but the only static lighting available will be natural light from windows and doors. All electrical lighting will be off. In some cases, the windows may be blocked, leaving the user in close to total darkness. The user will be accustomed to working by the light of headlamps or flashlights. It may be possible to setup area flood lighting, but that is not the ideal or common case. Hope this helps.

Magic Leap 2 uses a Time of Flight (ToF) to generate the mesh. ToF sensors emit a pulse of infrared light and measures the time it takes for the light to bounce back from the object. By knowing the speed of light and the time of flight, the sensors can calculate the distance of a point on the object. This is how a ToF sensor creates a depth map, which is then used to create a mesh.

However, ToF sensors have some limitations that affect their performance and accuracy. One of these limitations is that they do not work well on dark and black surfaces. This is because dark and black surfaces absorb most of the infrared light, leaving very little light to reflect back to the sensor. As a result, the sensor receives a weak or no signal from these surfaces, which leads to missing or inaccurate depth information. This causes holes or artifacts in the mesh, making it look incomplete or distorted.

To improve the quality of the mesh, depending on the material you are scanning, you can try adding more ambient light or using a flash. This will help to increase the amount of light that reflects back from the dark surfaces, making them more visible to the sensor.

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