Abstract for mendonca_PAMI

PAMI 2001


P.R.D.S. Mendonça, K-Y. K. Wong and R. Cipolla


This paper addresses the problem of motion estimation from profiles (also known as apparent contours) of an object rotating on a turntable in front of a single camera. Its main contribution is the development of a practical and accurate technique for solving this problem from profiles alone, which is precise enough to allow the reconstruction of the shape of the object. No correspondences between points or lines are necessary, although the method proposed can be used equally when these features are available, without any further adaptation. Symmetry properties of the surface of revolution swept out by the rotating object are exploited to obtain the image of the rotation axis and the homography relating epipolar lines in 2 views, in a robust and elegant way. These, together with geometric constraints for images of rotating objects, are then used to obtain first the image of the horizon, which is the projection of the plane that contains the camera centers, and then the epipoles, thus fully determining the epipolar geometry of the image sequence. The estimation of the epipolar geometry by this sequential approach (image of rotation axis --- homography --- image of the horizon --- epipoles) avoids many of the problems usually found in other algorithms for motion recovery from profiles. In particular, the search for the epipoles, by far the most critical step, is carried out as a simple one-dimensional optimization problem. The initialization of the parameters is trivial and completely automatic for all stages of the algorithm. After the estimation of the epipolar geometry, the Euclidean motion is recovered using the fixed intrinsic parameters of the camera, obtained either from a calibration grid or from self-calibration techniques. Finally, the spinning object is reconstructed from its profiles, using the motion estimated in the previous stage. Results from real data are presented, demonstrating the efficiency and usefulness of the proposed methods.

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