Detecting Planar Surfaces in Outdoor Urban Environments
Interim rept. Oct 2007-Aug 2008
ARMY RESEARCH LAB ADELPHI MD COMPUTATIONAL AND INFORMATION SCIENCES DIRECTORATE
Pagination or Media Count:
We describe an approach to automatically detect building facades in images of urban environments. This is an important problem in vision-based navigation, landmark recognition, and surveillance applications. In particular, with the proliferation of GPS- and camera-enabled cell phones, a backup geolocation system is needed when GPS satellite signals are blocked in so-called urban canyons. Image line segments are first located, and then the vanishing points of these segments are determined using the RANSAC robust estimation algorithm. Next, the intersections of line segments associated with pairs of vanishing points are used to generate local support for planar facades at different orientations. The plane support points are then clustered using an algorithm that requires no knowledge of the number of clusters or of their spatial proximity. Finally, building facades are identified by fitting vanishing point-aligned quadrilaterals to the clustered support points. Our experiments show good performance in a number of complex urban environments. The main contribution of our approach is its improved performance over existing approaches while placing no constraints on the facades in terms of their number or orientation, and minimal constraints on the length of the detected line segments.
- Structural Engineering and Building Technology