4 June 2014 Advanced THz sensor array for precise position and material properties recognition
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Abstract
The precise position of objects in the industrial process, assembly lines, conveyers, or processing bins is essential for fast and high quality production. In many robotized setups the material type and its properties are crucial. When several types of materials or parts are used, material recognition is required. Advanced robotics systems depend on various sensors to recognize material properties, and high resolution cameras with expensive laser measuring systems are used to determine the precise object position. The purpose of this paper is to present how the THz sensor and THz waves can be applicable for such precise object position sensing and its material properties in real time. One of the additional features of such a THz sensor array is also the ability to see behind barriers that are transparent for THz waves. This allows the system to obtain precise dimensions, position, and material properties of the object, which are invisible for visible light or anyhow obscured to other vision systems. Furthermore, a 3D THz image of the object can also be obtained and, in cases when a visual picture is available, its fusion with a THz image is possible. In the paper a THz sensor array, operating at a 300GHz central frequency and at room conditions is presented, together with the proposed vision system description. The target is illuminated with a frequency modulated, solid state THz source, and provides output power around 1mW. By mixing of the illuminating and reflected signals, the resulting difference frequency signal is obtained. Its amplitude and phase carry all relevant information of the target. Some measurement results are also shown and discussed.
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Aleksander Sešek, Janez Trontelj, Andrej Švigelj, "Advanced THz sensor array for precise position and material properties recognition ", Proc. SPIE 9116, Next-Generation Robots and Systems, 91160C (4 June 2014); doi: 10.1117/12.2054857; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2054857
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