Using a three-beam optical pick-up from a compact disk player and a flexible, shaft-mounted diffraction grating, we obtain information about the rotation speed and angular position of the motor's spindle. This information may be used for feedback to the motor for smooth operation. Due to the small size of the focused spot and the built-in auto-focus mechanism of the optical head, the proposed encoder can achieve submicrometer resolution. With high resolution, reliable operation, and low-cost elements, the proposed method is suitable for rotary and linear motion control where accurate positioning of an object is required.
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