I've been searching for a few days now to no avail, no doubt it's my searching skills which are lacking. But I'm trying to represent how an industrial laser scanner sees the world (especially how the laser scanner creates its own shadows with the objects it interacts with).

Where the field of view of the scanner emmits a red field looking forward, and if something blocks the light emmited the field doesn't continue creating a "shadow" on that red field.

See the image for an example, notice how the tines of the forklift create a shadow on the laser scanners field of view.

enter image description here

Any help is greatly appreciated Thanks Evan

  • 2
    $\begingroup$ if it is as the image then you are looking for Volumetric lighting $\endgroup$
    – Chebhou
    Sep 10, 2016 at 10:12
  • $\begingroup$ Yeah that makes sense, and i have been able to get volumetric lighting for an entire scene, but i am completely stumped in how to make the volumetric lighting only affect one thin plane. $\endgroup$ Sep 10, 2016 at 22:48
  • $\begingroup$ and alternatively to make the field of view look less "foggy" like seen here i.ytimg.com/vi/pOAPFS9GwAE/maxresdefault.jpg ideally im trying to create a material to get the shdowing effect and i could tweak the look of it (colour, transparency, glossy surface etc) $\endgroup$ Sep 10, 2016 at 23:00

1 Answer 1


Sadly you cannot isolate the effects of a lamp on an object in Cycles as you can using Blender Internal Renderer layers.

So I tried building an intense isolated lamp & enclosure. From this I include a volume box for the emitted light to excite. The enclosure cam be hidden from the camera by simply turning off its Object Properties > Cycles Settings > Ray Visibility > Camera.

Hide occlusion box

The material for the volume uses a scatter with a density of 0.03 While the Spot lamp in the box with a slit has a high emit/strength value of 50,000. You can have a wide spread or a narrow beam by altering the Spot angle.

To reduce render time you could build the volume box to exactly match the beam spread of the laser.

Lazer volume

  • $\begingroup$ I think that an OSL could achieve this effect as a material boolean or cut away from intersections from some defined emission point. But it would only render on CPU. And the script that I'm thinking of isn't released yet :-( $\endgroup$
    – 3pointedit
    Sep 12, 2016 at 1:48

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .