Reconstruction of refractive index maps using photogrammetry

A. Miller, A. J. Mullholland, K.M.M. Tant, S.G. Pierce, B. Hughes, A.B. Forbes

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)
17 Downloads (Pure)


Large volume metrology is a key enabler of autonomous precision manufacturing. For component positioning, the optical-based metrology technique of photogrammetry could be used more widely if its accuracy was improved. These positional measurements are subject to uncertainties which can be greater than manufacturing tolerances. One source of uncertainty is due to thermal gradients, which cause the refraction of the light rays in large-scale industrial environments. This paper uses light-based sensor data to reconstruct a heterogeneous spatial map of the refractive index in air. We use this reconstructed refractive index map to discount the refractive effects and thereby reduce the uncertainty of this positioning problem. This new inverse problem employs Voronoi tessellations to spatially parameterize the refractive index map, the Fast Marching Method to solve the forward problem of calculating the light rays through this medium, and a Bayesian approach in the inversion. Using simulated data, this methodology leads to positioning improvements of up to 37 (Formula presented.).

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2696-2718
Number of pages23
JournalInverse Problems in Science and Engineering
Issue number13
Early online date1 Jul 2021
Publication statusPublished - 31 Dec 2021


  • photogrammetry
  • metrology
  • refractive index
  • reversible jump Markov chain Monte Carlo
  • fast marching method
  • voronoi tessellation


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