Preprint Article Version 1 Preserved in Portico This version is not peer-reviewed

A New Adaptable, Optical High-Resolution 3-Axis Sensor

Version 1 : Received: 13 December 2016 / Approved: 14 December 2016 / Online: 14 December 2016 (05:12:29 CET)

A peer-reviewed article of this Preprint also exists.

Buchhold, N.; Baumgartner, C. A New, Adaptable, Optical High-Resolution 3-Axis Sensor. Sensors 2017, 17, 254. Buchhold, N.; Baumgartner, C. A New, Adaptable, Optical High-Resolution 3-Axis Sensor. Sensors 2017, 17, 254.


This paper presents a new optical, multi-functional, high-resolution 3-axis sensor which serves to navigate and can, for example, replace standard joysticks in medical devices such as electric wheelchairs, surgical robots or medical diagnosis devices. A light source, e.g. a laser diode is affixed to a movable axis and projects a random geometric shape on an image sensor (CMOS or CCD). The software in the downstream microcontroller identifies the geometric shape’s center, distortion and size, then calculates X, Y, and Z coordinates. These coordinates can then be processed in attached devices. The 3-axis sensor is characterized by its very high resolution, precise reproducibility and plausibility of the coordinates produced. In addition, optical processing of the signal provides a high level of safety against electromagnetic and radio frequency interference. The sensor presented here is adaptive and can be adjusted to fit a user’s range of motion (stroke and force). This recommendation aims to optimize sensor systems such as joysticks in medical devices in terms of safety, ease of use, and adaptability.


tactile sensors; assistive technologies; power wheelchair; medical systems; robotic; joystick; optical sensor


Physical Sciences, Optics and Photonics

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