Best ellipse and cylinder parameters estimation from laser profile scan sections

Mohamed Rahayem, Naoufel Werghi, Johan Kjellander

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

31 Scopus citations


Industrial applications like robot-aided welding, automated inspection, and 3D measurements require 3D points to be captured from the surfaces of objects and processed to calculate the information-of-interest. The lack of research focused on fitting ellipses to 3D laser profile data, and the intrinsic features that distinguish it from 2D digital images, motivated us to conduct a comparative study involving the most popular ellipse-fitting methods. After describing our laser profile scanning system, and a survey of ellipse-fitting methods, we compare, using extensive experiments performed with synthetic and real data, the fitting algorithms in terms of stability and accuracy with respect to a variety of factors. The estimate obtained with the best method is used to initialize a robust non-linear iterative ellipse fitting method. Finally, we describe a novel method for the construction of cylindrical surfaces from estimated elliptical sections.

Original languageBritish English
Pages (from-to)1242-1259
Number of pages18
JournalOptics and Lasers in Engineering
Issue number9
StatePublished - Sep 2012


  • Curve fitting
  • Ellipse fitting
  • Industrial robot vision system
  • Laser profile scanner
  • Pattern analysis


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