Real-time image processing for particle tracking velocimetry

Mark Kreizer, David Ratner, Alex Liberzon*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

70 Scopus citations


We present a novel high-speed particle tracking velocimetry (PTV) experimental system. Its novelty is due to the FPGA-based, real-time image processing "on camera". Instead of an image, the camera transfers to the computer using a network card, only the relevant information of the identified flow tracers. Therefore, the system is ideal for the remote particle tracking systems in research and industrial applications, while the camera can be controlled and data can be transferred over any high-bandwidth network. We present the hardware and the open source software aspects of the PTV experiments. The tracking results of the new experimental system has been compared to the flow visualization and particle image velocimetry measurements. The canonical flow in the central cross section of a a cubic cavity (1:1:1 aspect ratio) in our lid-driven cavity apparatus is used for validation purposes. The downstream secondary eddy (DSE) is the sensitive portion of this flow and its size was measured with increasing Reynolds number (via increasing belt velocity). The size of DSE estimated from the flow visualization, PIV and compressed PTV is shown to agree within the experimental uncertainty of the methods applied.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)105-110
Number of pages6
JournalExperiments in Fluids
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2010


FundersFunder number
Israel Science Foundation
Wolfson Family Charitable Trust


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