Fringe projection profilometry method with high efficiency, precision, and convenience: theoretical analysis and development

Shenzhen Lv, Dawei Tang, XueJun Zhang, Dongyu Yang, Weijie Deng, Kemao Qian

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

22 Citations (Scopus)


Fringe projector profilometry (FPP) is an important three-dimensional (3D) measurement technique, especially when high precision and speed are required. Thus, theoretical interrogation is critical to provide deep understanding and possible improvement of FPP. By dividing an FPP measurement process into four steps (system calibration, phase measurement, pixel correspondence, and 3D reconstruction), we give theoretical analysis on the entire process except for the extensively studied calibration step. Our study indeed reveals a series of important system properties, to the best of our knowledge, for the first time: (i) in phase measurement, the optimal and worst fringe angles are proven perpendicular and parallel to epipolar line, respectively, and can be considered as system parameters and can be directly made available during traditional calibration, highlighting the significance of the epipolar line; (ii) in correspondence, when two sets of fringes with different fringe orientations are projected, the highest correspondence precision can be achieved with arbitrary orientations as long as these two orientations are perpendicular to each other; (iii) in reconstruction, a higher reconstruction precision is given by the 4 equation methods, while we notice that the 3-equation methods are almost dominatingly used in literature. Based on these theoretical results, we propose a novel FPP measurement method which (i) only projects one set of fringes with optimal fringe angle to explicitly work together with the epipolar line for precise pixel correspondence; (ii) for the first time, the optimal fringe angle is determined directly from the calibration parameters, instead of being measured; (iii) uses 4 equations for precise 3D reconstruction but we can remove one equation which is equivalent to an epipolar line, making it the first algorithm that can use 3-equation solution to achieve 4-equation precision. Our method is efficient (only one set of fringe patterns is required in projection and the speed is doubled in reconstruction), precise (in both pixel correspondence and 3D reconstruction), and convenient (the computable optimal fringe angle and a closed-form 3-equation solution). We also believe that our work is insightful in revealing fundamental FPP properties, provides a more reasonable measurement for practice, and thus is beneficial to further FPP studies.
Original languageEnglish
Article number467502
Pages (from-to)33515-33537
Number of pages23
JournalOptics Express
Issue number19
Early online date29 Aug 2022
Publication statusPublished - 12 Sep 2022


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