ART optical tracking in the construction machinery industry

The Technical University of Dresden (TU Dresden), Institute for Construction Machines and Conveying Technology, is doing research in simulation applications and Virtual Reality for the construction machinery industry

©University of Dresden

General information

As one focus of their research activities the Institute for Construction Machines and Conveying Technology of the TU Dresden takes care about interactive machinery simulation and Virtual Reality.
Mobile work machines, especially construction machines, work in often changing operation conditions. Fatigue failures and breakdowns of components, as well as loss of energy efficiency are the consequences. The dimensions of the machines make the recording of dynamic measurements complicated. In order to face this kind of  challenge ART was asked to set up a tracking solution in a real outdoor scenario in order to track an entire construction machine during its work.

ART tracking solution

For the motion tracking solution a huge construction machine, in this case an excavator was equipped with six 3D targets and one 6D target. A set up of 4 modified ARTTRACK2 cameras (with narrow bandwidth interference filters for the outdoor use) was installed on a real building ground, covering a tracking area of 10m x 10m. An accuracy of approx. 5mm and a resolution of <1mm could be achieved. In 2014, with the advanced ARTTRACK5, these results can even be improved.

Why ART?

  • ART is able to track many markers simultaneously and in a time-resolved recording
  • ART could modify the ARTTRACK2 cameras for a robust and stable outdoor use
  • Even in hot and sunny outdoor conditions, the tracking procedure was not affected
  • ART’s well-known accuracy and stability of their products was a good argument for this special outdoor application

Therefore it was possible to capture the complex movement of a construction machine and achieve:

  • Simultaneous recording of many hinge points
  • Measurement of each point in 3d
  • Time resolved measurement for recording vibrations

→ Better understanding of load dependent bending and dynamic behavior.


  • 4 x ARTTRACK2 cameras
  • 6 x 3D targets
  • 1 x 6D target
  • PC with tracking software DTrack2

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