Structured light speeds pipe inspection
FEBRUARY 11, 2008--By combining a variety of disciplines, Kaspar Altoefer has devised a novel system of inspecting pipes.
FEBRUARY 11, 2008--By combining a variety of disciplines, Kaspar Altoefer has devised a novel system of inspecting pipes. His solution, comprising a camera, a laser, and a computer, uses the laser as part of a profiling system that shines a ring-shaped light pattern on to the wall of the pipe. The pattern is then projected back from the pipe wall on to the camera that acquires the image from the pipe with the ring overlaid.
From there, data are transferred into the computer for analysis and identification. Rather than analyze an entire image of a pipe wall, only the area the laser has illuminated is analyzed. The system is now being tested by several water companies that hope it will improve the quality of their pipe repairs and bring substantial cost savings.
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