Experimental Mechanics

, Volume 44, Issue 3, pp 278–288

Advances in light microscope stereo vision

  • H. W. Schreier
  • D. Garcia
  • M. A. Sutton

DOI: 10.1007/BF02427894

Cite this article as:
Schreier, H.W., Garcia, D. & Sutton, M.A. Experimental Mechanics (2004) 44: 278. doi:10.1007/BF02427894


The increasing research focus on small-scale mechanical systems has generated a need for deformation and strain measurement systems for microscale applications. Optical measurement systems, such as digital image correlation, present an obvious choice due to their non-contacting nature. However, the transfer of measurement technology developed for macroscale applications to the microscale presents unique challenges due to the differences in the required highmagnification optics. In this paper we illustrate the problems involved in calibrating a stereo microscope using traditional techniques and present a novel methodology for acquiring accurate, three-dimensional surface shape and deformation data on small-scale specimens.

Experimental results demonstrate that stereo microscope systems can be accurately and reliably calibrated using a priori distortion estimation techniques in combination with traditional bundle-adjustment. The unique feature of the present methodology is that it does not require a precision calibration target but relies solely on point correspondences obtained by image correlation. A variety of experiments illustrate the measurement performance of a stereo microscope system. It is shown that the surface strains obtained from the full-field, three-dimensional measurements on tensile specimens undergoing large rigid-body motions are within ±50 microstrain of strain gage measurements for strains ranging from 0 to 2000 microstrain.

Key Words

Stereo microscope stereo vision accurate stereo calibration procedure digital image correlation three-dimensional surface displacement measurement 

Copyright information

© Society for Experimental Mechanics 2004

Authors and Affiliations

  • H. W. Schreier
  • D. Garcia
    • 1
  • M. A. Sutton
    • 2
  1. 1.Ecole Mines des Albi in FranceFrance
  2. 2.Department of Mechanical EngineeringUniversity of South CarolinaColumbiaUSA

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