Our subject is tracking – that is, in our context, the positional measurement of bodies (subjects or objects) that move in a defined space. Position and/or orientation of the body can be measured. If just X, Y and Z position are measured, we call this 3 degrees of freedom (3DOF or 3D) tracking. If position (3 coordinates) and orientation (3 independent angular coordinates) are measured simultaneously, we call this 6 degrees of freedom (6DOF or 6D) tracking.
There are various tracking systems, based on different measurement principles, available: e.g. mechanical trackers, magnetic trackers, optical trackers (VIS or IR), acoustic trackers and systems based on inertial or gyro sensors. Hybrid systems, combining different techniques, are also widely used.
In the group of contactless trackers, i.e. trackers that are not working with mechanical digitizers, the highest accuracy is provided by optical trackers. Optical tracking does not suffer from measurement distortions due to ferromagnetic metals as electromagnetic techniques do, or from drift problems, like inertial sensors. Every single frame provides data with „optical“ accuracy.
ART has been focused on optical tracking systems since the company's foundation in 1999. Learn more about the technical basics of optical tracking on the next pages.