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Particle Tracking of Orientation and Velocity Of Arbitrary Shape

Simon Elias Eberhard (1), Christian Lundgaard (2), Jens Honore Walther (1), Knud Erik Meyer (1)

1. Technical University of Denmark, Kongens Lyngby, Denmark
2. Trebo, Albertslund, Denmark


Dispersions or particulate systems are prevalent in numerous natural and practical applications. Characterisation of such multiphase systems usually involves measuring size, spatial location, velocity and number density, which is usually non-trivial. The 'Depth from Defocus' (DFD) technique provides an imaging-based volumetric approach for estimating the size and position of dispersed spherical particles using the blurring information from a shadowgraph image. The two-image DFD approach involves two cameras to capture simultaneous images at different degrees of blur, which, although simpler, requires a mandatory calibration procedure. This study proposes a single-image DFD technique that provides a calibration-free size estimation using theoretical functions while evaluating position requires a simple calibration. The efficacy of this technique is demonstrated for various sparse spherical dispersions, including target dots, dispersed glass beads, liquid droplets in sprays and surface bubble rupture, and pollen grains. The method further enables precise determination of the measurement volume, which is crucial, allowing for bias-free estimates of the size distribution and volume concentration. The simple optical configuration and semi-automatic calibration procedure make this method easily deployable and accessible for diverse applications. The pixelation effect on the limiting value of the degree of blur is also estimated theoretically and compared with experiments. This effect is of interest concerning any typical discrete sensor imaging system in general.

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