The accurate measurement of the position and orientation of a robot end‐effector is the most critical issue for calibrating of robotic devices. Calibration methods provide tools to improve the accuracy of robots without modification to the mechanical unit or its control architecture. However, such calibration techniques require a large number of measurements. Dynamic measurement of position and orientation not only provides a solution to this problem, it also establishes the foundation for development of techniques to improve the robot’s dynamic accuracy. The concept of laser‐interferometry‐based measurement has been proposed. A system based on this concept is generally referred to as a laser tracking system (LTS). This paper describes the principle of laser‐interferometry‐based tracking. Further, the structure and various components within such a system are presented. A kinematic model for laser tracking is described and the performance of the system in its present configuration is presented. The application potential of such an approach to position and orientation (pose) measurement is also briefly described.
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