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Image segmentation through graph-based clustering from surface normals estimated by photometric stereo

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4 Author(s)
Julia, C. ; Dept. of Comput. Sci. & Math., Univ. Rovira i Virgili, Tarragona, Spain ; Moreno, R. ; Puig, D. ; Garcia, M.A.

A method for segmenting 2D images based on 3D shape information is proposed. First, a robust photometric stereo technique estimates the 3D normals of the objects present in the scene for every image pixel. Then, the image is segmented by grouping its pixels according to their estimated normals through graph-based clustering. Differently from other image segmentation algorithms based on intensity, colour or texture, the regions of which are determined by the visual appearance of the depicted objects, the regions obtained with the proposed technique only depend on the 3D shapes of those objects. This can be advantageous for higher level scene understanding algorithms. This technique is especially suited to poorly illuminated scenarios and utilises a conventional camera and six inexpensive strobe lights.

Published in:

Electronics Letters  (Volume:46 ,  Issue: 2 )