Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Department of Aeronautics and Astronautics

First Advisor

Jonathan T. Black, PhD.


The study of structural characteristics of Unmanned Aerial Systems (UASs) continues to be an important field of research for developing state of the art nano/micro systems. Development of a metrology system using computer vision (CV) tracking and 3D point extraction would provide an avenue for making these theoretical developments. This work provides a portable, scalable system capable of real-time tracking, zooming, and 3D position estimation of a UAS using multiple cameras. Current state-of-the-art photogrammetry systems use retro-reflective markers or single point lasers to obtain object poses and/or positions over time. Using a CV pan/tilt/zoom (PTZ) system has the potential to circumvent their limitations. The system developed in this paper exploits parallel-processing and the GPU for CV-tracking, using optical flow and known camera motion, in order to capture a moving object using two PTU cameras. The parallel-processing technique developed in this work is versatile, allowing the ability to test other CV methods with a PTZ system using known camera motion. Utilizing known camera poses, the object's 3D position is estimated and focal lengths are estimated for filling the image to a desired amount. This system is tested against truth data obtained using an industrial system.

AFIT Designator


DTIC Accession Number