Export STL 3D Model with different densities according to the HU of DICOM

Does the exported STL output file (when segmenting) also considers the densities of the DICOM image (more or less HU units)? If not, is there any way to obtain a exported STL that also considers the densities?

Please if I’m wrong in some way, correct me, because I’m just learning about this and how it works!

STL is very limited, so probably you would need to use a different file format. What is your end goal?

1 Like

Thank you very much for your suggestion, my main goal is to 3D print a portion (or slice) of a CAT, but not only its geometry, also its different tissues densities (tissue heterogeneity and homogeneity) that varies proportionately on the radiation attenuation (HU) each voxel or tissue have.

I’m planning to achieve this by getting the HU array of said DICOM file as well as its STL, and (somehow) import the HU array values to the STL, to get a new STL that also have different tissues densities. Then, I will obtain its G-Code and the 3D printer will use either “extrusion speed” or “linear motor speed” to vary these densities while printing.

Altough not entirely sure if this is the correct way, I think this should somehow work. But I’m open to suggestion and if I need to change the whole idea from its roots I will.

Standard STL files cannot store densities (it cannot even store surface normals or color). Probably the best would be to use a multimaterial printer and the file format that it can take for modulation material properties.

However, if the idea is to but if your idea is to post-process the g-code based on position then I would recommend not try to export the density information to a surface mesh file (how would you know the density inside then?) but instead use the CT volume as input for your post-processing script. The reason is that a volume contains exactly what you need, it can tell the density of the material at any 3D position.

1 Like