REMOTE ATTITUDE SENSING BASED ON HIGH-SPEED MUELLER MATRIX ELLIPSOMETRY
Keywords: Attitude metrology, Mueller matrix ellipsometry, Birefringence, Real-time remote sensing, Attitude angle
Abstract. The attitude metrology of moving objects has always been a hot topic in engineering applications. In this article, a novel optical method based on the high-speed Mueller matrix ellipsometry (MME) is proposed for real-time remote attitude sensing. With the help of an electric level, all the attitude angles of a free-moving object with a birefringent waveplate attached can be simultaneously extracted in real time. Compared with existing ellipsometry-based attitude metrology that can only be used in the transmission mode, the proposed method with the advantages of the high-speed MME can expand the application to both the transmission and reflection modes while maintaining higher accuracy and robustness in an ultra-large measurement range. The basic principle is presented via theoretical derivation, and the change in the Mueller matrix of the birefringent waveplate versus the attitude angles is explored in the simulated experiments. In a series of the dynamic experiments, with the extremely high temporal resolution and accuracy of the high-speed MME, an angular resolution up to 0.00022° and an angular accuracy better than 0.01° are achieved in the real-time attitude tracking of the free-moving object. As an additional benefit, the real-time angular velocity and acceleration of all the attitude angles can be obtained simultaneously. These experimental results demonstrate that the proposed attitude metrology is ready to be applied to the real-time remote attitude sensing with high angular resolution and accuracy.