Experiments in Fluids

, Volume 49, Issue 3, pp 701–712 | Cite as

Improvement of measurement accuracy in micro PIV by image overlapping

  • Chuong Vinh Nguyen
  • Andreas FourasEmail author
  • Josie Carberry
Research Article


Micro PIV uses volume illumination; therefore, the velocity measured at the focal plane is a weighted average of the velocities within the measurement volume. The contribution of out-of-focus particles to the PIV correlation can generate significant measurement errors particularly in near wall regions. We present a new application of image overlapping, which is shown to be very effective in improving the accuracy of time-averaged velocity measurements by effectively reducing the measurement depth. The performance of image overlapping and correlation averaging were studied using synthetic and experimental images of micro channel flow, both with and without image pre-processing. The results show that for flows without particle clumping, image overlapping provides the best measurement accuracy without any need for image pre-processing. For flows with particle clumping, image overlapping combined with band-pass filtering provides the best measurement accuracy. When overlapped images are saturated with particles due to a large number of image pairs, image overlapping measurement still does not show any visible pixel-locking effect. Image overlapping was found to have comparable or slightly reduced pixel-locking effects compared to correlation averaging. In addition, image overlapping utilizes significantly fewer computational resources than the other techniques.


Image Pair Correlation Average Correlation Peak Synthetic Image Image Thresholding 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


δx, δy

Horizontal and vertical displacements in pixels


Depth of correlation


Fluorescent wavelength

\(\Upphi_k(\delta x,\delta y) \)

Correlation function from an image pair

\(\Upphi_{\rm ens}(\delta x,\delta y) \)

Averaged correlation function

\(\Upphi_{\rm ovl}(\delta x,\delta y) \)

Correlation function from an overlapped image pairs


Numerical aperture


Signal threshold where depth of correlation ends


Particle diameter

Ik(ij), Ik(ij)

First and second image exposures


Lens magnification


Number of particles per image


Image width and height


Half of channel height


Normalized velocity

\(U_c^* \)

Normalized velocity at the center, z = 0

\(U_w^* \)

Normalized velocity near the wall, z = 0.9R


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  • Chuong Vinh Nguyen
    • 1
  • Andreas Fouras
    • 1
    • 2
  • Josie Carberry
    • 1
  1. 1.Fluid Laboratory for Aeronautical and Industrial Research (FLAIR)Monash UniversityMelbourneAustralia
  2. 2.Division of Biological EngineeringMonash UniversityMelbourneAustralia

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