Skip to Main Content
One source of difficulties when processing outdoor images is the presence of haze, fog or smoke which fades the colors and reduces the contrast of the observed objects. We introduce a novel algorithm and variants for visibility restoration from a single image. The main advantage of the proposed algorithm compared with other is its speed: its complexity is a linear function of the number of image pixels only. This speed allows visibility restoration to be applied for the first time within real-time processing applications such as sign, lane-marking and obstacle detection from an in-vehicle camera. Another advantage is the possibility to handle both color images or gray level images since the ambiguity between the presence of fog and the objects with low color saturation is solved by assuming only small objects can have colors with low saturation. The algorithm is controlled only by a few parameters and consists in: atmospheric veil inference, image restoration and smoothing, tone mapping. A comparative study and quantitative evaluation is proposed with a few other state of the art algorithms which demonstrates that similar or better quality results are obtained. Finally, an application is presented to lane-marking extraction in gray level images, illustrating the interest of the approach.
Date of Conference: Sept. 29 2009-Oct. 2 2009