Visual motion estimation and tracking of rigid bodies by physical simulation

Duff, Damien Jade (2011). Visual motion estimation and tracking of rigid bodies by physical simulation. University of Birmingham. Ph.D.


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This thesis applies knowledge of the physical dynamics of objects to estimating object motion from vision when estimation from vision alone fails. It differentiates itself from existing physics-based vision by building in robustness to situations where existing visual estimation tends to fail: fast motion, blur, glare, distractors, and partial or full occlusion. A real-time physics simulator is incorporated into a stochastic framework by adding several different models of how noise is injected into the dynamics. Several different algorithms are proposed and experimentally validated on two problems:

motion estimation and object tracking.

The performance of visual motion estimation from colour histograms of a ball moving in two dimensions is improved considerably when a physics simulator is integrated into a
MAP procedure involving non-linear optimisation and RANSAC-like methods. Process noise or initial condition noise in conjunction with a physics-based dynamics results in improved robustness on hard visual problems.

A particle filter applied to the task of full 6D visual tracking of the pose an object being pushed by a robot in a table-top environment is improved on difficult visual problems by incorporating a simulator as a dynamics model and injecting noise as forces into the simulator.

Type of Work: Thesis (Doctorates > Ph.D.)
Award Type: Doctorates > Ph.D.
College/Faculty: Colleges (2008 onwards) > College of Engineering & Physical Sciences
School or Department: School of Computer Science
Funders: None/not applicable
Subjects: Q Science > QA Mathematics > QA75 Electronic computers. Computer science
Q Science > QA Mathematics > QA76 Computer software


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