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Low-complexity, high-speed, and high-dynamic range time-to-impact algorithm

[+] Author Affiliations
Anders Åström

Combitech AB, Universitetsv 14, 583 31 Linköping, Sweden

Robert Forchheimer

Linköping University, Division of Information Coding, 581 83 Linköping, Sweden

J. Electron. Imaging. 21(4), 043025 (Dec 17, 2012). doi:10.1117/1.JEI.21.4.043025
History: Received June 14, 2012; Revised November 10, 2012; Accepted November 21, 2012
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Abstract.  We present a method suitable for a time-to-impact sensor. Inspired by the seemingly “low” complexity of small insects, we propose a new approach to optical flow estimation that is the key component in time-to-impact estimation. The approach is based on measuring time instead of the apparent motion of points in the image plane. The specific properties of the motion field in the time-to-impact application are used, such as measuring only along a one-dimensional (1-D) line and using simple feature points, which are tracked from frame to frame. The method lends itself readily to be implemented in a parallel processor with an analog front-end. Such a processing concept [near-sensor image processing (NSIP)] was described for the first time in 1983. In this device, an optical sensor array and a low-level processing unit are tightly integrated into a hybrid analog-digital device. The high dynamic range, which is a key feature of NSIP, is used to extract the feature points. The output from the device consists of a few parameters, which will give the time-to-impact as well as possible transversal speed for off-centered viewing. Performance and complexity aspects of the implementation are discussed, indicating that time-to-impact data can be achieved at a rate of 10 kHz with today’s technology.

© 2012 SPIE and IS&T

Citation

Anders Åström and Robert Forchheimer
"Low-complexity, high-speed, and high-dynamic range time-to-impact algorithm", J. Electron. Imaging. 21(4), 043025 (Dec 17, 2012). ; http://dx.doi.org/10.1117/1.JEI.21.4.043025


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