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Earth observation image and DEM information aggregation for realistic 3-D visualization of natural landscapes

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2 Author(s)
Maire, C. ; German Aerosp. Center, Remote Sensing Technol. Inst., Wessling, Germany ; Datcu, M.

This paper presents a system to integrate digital elevation model (DEM) enhancement and Earth Observation (EO) image analysis for realistic three-dimensional (3-D) rendering applications. There is an increasing interest in interferometric synthetic aperture radar (InSAR) data, principally due to the availability of the nearly global Shuttle Radar Topography Mission coverage. To remove artifacts and noise from an InSAR DEM, a nonstationary Bayesian filtering is applied that preserves structural information. Land-cover or man-made structures are easily recognized in an optical image. The corresponding geometry encapsulated in the DEM differs from our implicit perception and generally leads to unrealistic 3-D rendering. To improve this, DEM regularization is achieved using only the visualization dataset (optical image and DEM). It consists of extracting relevant information from the optical image and integrate them in the filtered DEM. To gather image information, an object-based description of large optical EO images is obtained in two stages 1) an image is segmented to create a partition of regions and 2) a novel dynamical algorithm is proposed to extract the regions and encode them in a tree structure. Regions are modeled by objects primitives stored in a database. Spatial relationships between regions are reflected by the presented tree of regions. Using the object-based description generation, structures to be integrated into the DEM are interactively selected and classified among a set of user-thematic. Each thematic is associated with a corresponding elevation modeling and enables to estimate the region's 3-D structure. The proposed object line processing provides more realistic 3-D visualizations.

Published in:

Geoscience and Remote Sensing, IEEE Transactions on  (Volume:43 ,  Issue: 11 )

Date of Publication:

Nov. 2005

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