Bifocal Stereoscopic Vision for Intelligent Vehicles

Rovira-Más, Francisco; Qi Wang; Qin Zhang
January 2009
International Journal of Vehicular Technology;2009, Vol. 2009, Special section p1
Academic Journal
The numerous benefits of real-time 3D awareness for autonomous vehicles have motivated the incorporation of stereo cameras to the perception units of intelligent vehicles. The availability of the distance between camera and objects is essential for such applications as automatic guidance and safeguarding; however, a poor estimation of the position of the objects in front of the vehicle can result in dangerous actions. There is an emphasis, therefore, in the design of perception engines that can make available a rich and reliable interval of ranges in front of the camera. The objective of this research is to develop a stereo head that is capable of capturing 3D information from two cameras simultaneously, sensing different, but complementary, fields of view. In order to do so, the concept of bifocal perception was defined and physically materialized in an experimental bifocal stereo camera. The assembled system was validated through field tests, and results showed that each stereo pair of the head excelled at a singular range interval. The fusion of both intervals led to a more faithful representation of reality.


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