High Performance Optical Angular Position Sensing at Low-cost: a Bio-inspired Approach

  • Juston Raphaël
  • Viollet Stéphane
  • Kerhuel Lubin
  • Franceschini Nicolas


Accurate remote contactless angular sensing at high accuracy often requires emissive sensors with high energy consumption, complex processing and high cost. Thanks to active micro-vibrations applied to its elementary retina, our low-cost bio-inspired optical position sensing device is able to measure the angular position of a contrasting edge at low cost with hyperacuity. This sensor is able, for example, to estimate the elevation of a real edge such as the horizontal roof of a distant building with a resolution (0.025 degrees) at least 160-fold better than the sensors's static resolution (4 degrees), despite any changes in the contrast and illuminance. The visual processing algorithm is based on just a few linear filters and arithmetic operations, which require few computational resources. The high performances and low cost of this novel position sensing device make it suitable for applications in the fields of metrology, astronomy, robotics, automotive and aerospace.