Method and Apparatus for Compressive Acquisition of Depth Range

Technology #15495

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FIG. 1A is a block diagram illustrating an exemplary imaging system in which spatial modulation of transmitted light is used in accordance with an embodiment;FIG. 1B is a block diagram illustrating an exemplary imaging system in which light is spatially modulated after reflection from a scene of interest in accordance with an embodiment;FIG. 2 is a flowchart illustrating a machine implemented method for use in recovering depth information for a scene of interest in accordance with an embodiment;FIG. 3 is a flowchart illustrating a machine implemented method for use in processing digital sample data to generate a depth map for a scene of interest in accordance with an embodiment;FIGS. 4A is a diagram illustrating a coordinate system for use in describing an imaging environment in accordance with an embodiment;FIGS. 4B is a diagram illustrating a coordinate system for use in describing an imaging environment in accordance with an embodiment;FIGS. 4C and 4D are diagrams illustrating a coordinate system for use in describing an imaging environment in accordance with an embodiment;FIGS. 5A and 5B are diagrams illustrating the response of a single rectangular facet of a scene of interest to a fully transparent SLM pattern in accordance with an embodiment;FIGS. 5C is a diagram illustrating the response of a single rectangular facet of a scene of interest to a fully transparent SLM pattern in accordance with an embodiment;
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Inventors
Ahmed Kirmani
Research Laboratory of Electronics, MIT
Vivek Goyal
Research Laboratory of Electronics, MIT
Managed By
Jim Freedman
MIT Technology Licensing Officer - Chemicals, Instruments, Consumer Products
Patent Protection

Method and Apparatus to Determine Depth Information For A Scene of Interest

US Patent 8,982,363
Publications
CoDAC: A Compressive Depth Acquisition Camera Framework
Proc. IEEE Int. Conf. Acoustics, Speech, and Signal Processing (Kyoto, Japan), March 2012, pp. 3809-3812.

Applications

This technology is useful for 3D sensing and imaging applications.

Problem Addressed

Traditional methods of sensing three-dimensional (3D) scenes suffer from poor spatial resolution, low range accuracy, and the high cost of its implementation. Therefore, it is desirable to develop a depth acquisition system that possesses high spatial resolution without increasing the device cost and complexity.

Technology

The invention captures depth information for a three-dimensional scene in an efficient and cost-effective manner using only a single time-resolved detector and a pulsed laser diode as the illumination unit. The system achieves spatial resolution through patterned sensing of the scene using a digital micro-mirror device (DMD) array. The depth map reconstruction uses parametric signal modeling to recover the set of distinct depth ranges present in the scene. Then, using a convex program that exploits the sparsity of the Laplacian of the depth map, the spatial content at the estimated depth ranges is recovered.

Advantages

  • Higher spatial resolution, lower device cost and complexity than conventional 3D acquisition techniques.
  • Well suited for limited energy availability application such as battery powered applications and applications with smaller form factor e.g. laptops, digital cameras, etc.
  • Capable of minimizing the negative effects of ambient light when capturing 3D scenes.