Three-dimensional particle tracking using micro-particle image velocimetry hardware

Sean D. Peterson, Han Sheng Chuang, Steven T. Wereley

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

39 Citations (Scopus)


A method for tracking the three-dimensional position and computing the three velocity components of a micro-particle using information encoded in the ring structure of the particle image is introduced. The proposed technique can be employed in most existing micro-particle image velocimetry systems without any additional hardware and details of the optical train are not required. The technique utilizes a set of calibration images of a particle at various known distances from the focal plane (in the out-of-plane direction) in order to create a calibration curve. The calibration curve, which relates the radius of the outermost ring to the distance of the particle from focus is used to deduce the out-of-plane location of particles in experimental images. From successive images the particle's velocity is computed. The in-plane particle velocity is deduced from traditional particle tracking methods.

Original languageEnglish
Article number115406
JournalMeasurement Science and Technology
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - 2008 Nov 1

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Instrumentation
  • Engineering (miscellaneous)
  • Applied Mathematics


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