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Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

Fast Time-of-Flight Phase Unwrapping and Scene Segmentation Using Data Driven Scene Priors
by Crabb, Ryan Eugene, Ph.D., University of California, Santa Cruz, 2015, 145; 3746704
Abstract (Summary)

This thesis regards the method of full field time-of-flight depth imaging by way of amplitude modulated continuous wave signals correlated with step-shifted reference waveforms using a specialized solid state CMOS sensor, referred to as photonic mixing device. The specific focus deals with the inherent issue of depth ambiguity due to a fundamental property of periodic signals: that they repeat, or wrap, after each period, and any signal shifted by a whole number of wavelengths is indistinguishable from the original. Recovering the full extent of the signal’s path is known as phase unwrapping. The common, accepted solution requires the imaging of a series of two or more signals with differing modulation frequencies to resolve the ambiguity, the time delay of which will result in erroneous or invalid measurements for non-static elements of the scene. This work details a physical model of the observable illumination of the scene which provides priors for a novel probabilistic framework to recover the scene geometry by imaging only a single modulated signal. It is demonstrated that this process is able to provide more than adequate results in a majority of representative scenes, and that it can be accomplished on typical computer hardware at a speed that allows for the range imaging to be utilized in real-time, interactive applications.

One such real-time application is presented: alpha-matting, or foreground segmentation, for background substitution of live video. This is a generalized version of the common technique of green-screening that is utilized, for example, by every local weather reporter. The presented method, however, requires no special background, and is able to perform on high resolution video from a lower resolution depth image.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Manduchi, Roberto
Commitee: Davis, James E., Elkaim, Gabriel H., Manduchi, Roberto
School: University of California, Santa Cruz
Department: Computer Engineering
School Location: United States -- California
Source: DAI-B 77/06(E), Dissertation Abstracts International
Subjects: Computer Engineering
Keywords: Computer vision, Phase unwrapping, Range imaging, Time of flight
Publication Number: 3746704
ISBN: 978-1-339-40181-2
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