Abstract

We present a generalized method for reconstructing the shape of an object from measured gradient data. A certain class of optical sensors does not measure the shape of an object but rather its local slope. These sensors display several advantages, including high information efficiency, sensitivity, and robustness. For many applications, however, it is necessary to acquire the shape, which must be calculated from the slopes by numerical integration. Existing integration techniques show drawbacks that render them unusable in many cases. Our method is based on an approximation employing radial basis functions. It can be applied to irregularly sampled, noisy, and incomplete data, and it reconstructs surfaces both locally and globally with high accuracy.

© 2008 Optical Society of America

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