This paper describes a novel stereo matching algorithm for epipolar rectified images. The method applies colour segmentation on the reference image. The use of segmentation makes the algorithm capable of handling large untextured regions, estimating precise depth boundaries and propagating disparity information to occluded regions, which are challenging tasks for conventional stereo methods. We model disparity inside a segment by a planar equation. Initial disparity segments are clustered to form a set of disparity layers, which are planar surfaces that are likely to occur in the scene. Assignments of segments to disparity layers are then derived by minimization of a global cost function via a robust optimization technique that employs graph cuts. The cost function is defined on the pixel level, as well as on the segment level. While the pixel level measures the data similarity based on the current disparity map and detects occlusions symmetrically in both views, the segment level propagates the segmentation information and incorporates a smoothness term. New planar models are then generated based on the disparity layers' spatial extents. Results obtained for benchmark and self-recorded image pairs indicate that the proposed method is able to compete with the best-performing state-of-the-art algorithms.
M. Bleyer, M. Gelautz: "Graph-based Surface Reconstruction from Stereo Pairs Using Image Segmentation"; Talk: SPIE Electronic Imaging Conference, San Jose, CA, USA; 01-18-2005 - 01-20-2005; in: "SPIE Symposium on Electronic Imaging 2005 (Videometrics VIII)", vol. 5665 (2005), 288 - 299.
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