Our aim is to describe a method for detecting small deformations from a three-dimensional (3D) shape of large lateral dimensions. For this purpose the measurement method is based on the simultaneous utilization of several 3D optical systems and the phase-shifting technique. In this way, the following problems appear: optical distortion due to the large field observed, nonlinear phase-to-height conversion, conversion of image coordinates into object coordinates for each 3D optical system, and coordinate unification of all optical systems. The resolution is 50 microm with a field of view of 320 mm x 150 mm. We used this system to study the 3D human foot arch deformation under low loads in vivo. First results indicate the hysteresis behavior of the human foot under a low load (50 to 450 N).
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