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Table 1 Distinctive aspects of three representing techniques for 3D surface imaging [13,14,15,16,17,18]

From: Optical MEMS devices for compact 3D surface imaging cameras

  Stereoscopic vision Structured light ToF (time-of-flight)
Principle Compare disparities of stereo images from two 2D sensors Detect distortions of illuminated patterns by 3D surface Measure the transit time of reflected light from the target object
Depth accuracy mm to cm (difficulty with smooth and non-textured surface) μm to mm (depends on the pattern density) mm to cm (depends on resolution of ToF sensor)
Image resolution High (camera dependent) High (camera dependent) Low/medium (ToF sensor size dependent)
Scanning speed Medium (limited by software complexity) Medium/Fast (limited by SW complexity and camera speed) Fast (limited by sensor speed)
Low light performance Weak Good Good
Bright light performance Good Weak/medium (depends on illumination power) Medium
Distance range Mid range (depends on the distance between two cameras) Very short to mid range (depends on illumination power) Short to long range (depends on laser power and modulation)
Software complexity High Low/middle/high (depends on pattern density and variability) Low
Material cost Low Middle/high Middle