Particle Image Velocimetry (PIV)

Particle Image Velocimetry (PIV) is a non-intrusive laser optical measurement technique for research and diagnostics into flow, turbulence, microfluidics, spray atomization and combustion processes.

  • Standard PIV measures two velocity components in a plane (2D2C) using a single CCD or CMOS camera.
  • Stereo PIV measures three velocity components in a plane (2D3C) using two cameras.
  • Volumetric Velocimetry (also known as TOMO PIV) measures three velocity components in a volume (3D3C) using two, or more cameras.
  • Time resolved PIV benefits from the advances in CMOS camera technology to acquire high resolution PIV images at frame rates up to 25600 fps (frames per second) with full camera resolution.

Related techniques for measurements of flow fields are Particle Tracking Velocimetry (PTV), Feature Tracking and Feature PIV.

  • MicroPIV is used for flow studies in micro-channels in lab-on-a-Chip devices


  • Non intrusive, planar or volumetric technique
  • Two or three velocity components simultaneously
  • Snapshots of flowfields
  • Statistics, spatial correlations and other relevant data are available
  • Velocity range 0 to supersonic
  • Measurement areas from smaller than 1 mm2 up to bigger than 1 m2
  • Instantaneous velocity vector maps in a cross-section or volume of the flow
  • Results are similar to computational fluid dynamics, i.e. large eddy simulations.