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An accurate optical flow estimation algorithm is proposed in this paper. By combining the three-dimensional (3D) structure tensor with a parametric flow model, the optical flow estimation problem is converted to a generalized eigenvalue problem. The optical flow can be accurately estimated from the generalized eigenvectors. The confidence measure derived from the generalized eigenvalues is used to adaptively adjust the coherent motion region to further improve the accuracy. Experiments using both synthetic sequences with ground truth and real sequences illustrate our method. Comparisons with classical and recently published methods are also given to demonstrate the accuracy of our algorithm.