A vision system for mobile maritime surveillance platforms
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Mobile surveillance systems play an important role to minimise security and safety threats in high-risk or hazardous environments. Providing a mobile marine surveillance platform with situational awareness of its environment is important for mission success. An essential part of situational awareness is the ability to detect and subsequently track potential target objects.Typically, the exact type of target objects is unknown, hence detection is addressed as a problem of finding parts of an image that stand out in relation to their surrounding regions or are atypical to the domain. Contrary to existing saliency methods, this thesis proposes the use of a domain specific visual attention approach for detecting potential regions of interest in maritime imagery. For this, low-level features that are indicative of maritime targets are identified. These features are then evaluated with respect to their local, regional, and global significance. Together with a domain specific background segmentation technique, the features are combined in a Bayesian classifier to direct visual attention to potential target objects.The maritime environment introduces challenges to the camera system: gusts, wind, swell, or waves can cause the platform to move drastically and unpredictably. Pan-tilt-zoom cameras that are often utilised for surveillance tasks can adjusting their orientation to provide a stable view onto the target. However, in rough maritime environments this requires high-speed and precise inputs. In contrast, omnidirectional cameras provide a full spherical view, which allows the acquisition and tracking of multiple targets at the same time. However, the target itself only occupies a small fraction of the overall view. This thesis proposes a novel, target-centric approach for image stabilisation. A virtual camera is extracted from the omnidirectional view for each target and is adjusted based on the measurements of an inertial measurement unit and an image feature tracker. The combination of these two techniques in a probabilistic framework allows for stabilisation of rotational and translational ego-motion. Furthermore, it has the specific advantage of being robust to loosely calibrated and synchronised hardware since the fusion of tracking and stabilisation means that tracking uncertainty can be used to compensate for errors in calibration and synchronisation. This then completely eliminates the need for tedious calibration phases and the adverse effects of assembly slippage over time.Finally, this thesis combines the visual attention and omnidirectional stabilisation frameworks and proposes a multi view tracking system that is capable of detecting potential target objects in the maritime domain. Although the visual attention framework performed well on the benchmark datasets, the evaluation on real-world maritime imagery produced a high number of false positives. An investigation reveals that the problem is that benchmark data sets are unconsciously being influenced by human shot selection, which greatly simplifies the problem of visual attention. Despite the number of false positives, the tracking approach itself is robust even if a high number of false positives are tracked.
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Leoputra, Wilson Suryajaya (2009)Foreground object detection is a fundamental task in computer vision with many applications in areas such as object tracking, event identification, and behavior analysis. Most conventional foreground object detection ...
Albrecht, Thomas; West, Geoffrey; Tan, Tele (2010)This paper explores techniques for multiple views target tracking in a maritime environment using a mobile surveillance platform. We utilise an omnidirectional camera to capture full spherical video and use an Inertial ...
Albrecht, Thomas; West, Geoff; Tan, Tele; Ly, T. (2011)This paper presents a framework for Visual Attention Detection in maritime scenes. The focus is to provide an early processing stage for high resolution images captured by maritime surveillance platforms. The framework ...