An Epipolar Geometry-Based Fast Disparity Estimation Algorithm for Multiview Image and Video Coding

Effectively coding multiview visual content is an indispensable research topic because multiview image and video that provide greatly enhanced viewing experiences often contain huge amounts of data. Generally, conventional hybrid predictive- coding methodologies are adopted to address the compression by exploiting the temporal and interviewpoint redundancy existing in a multiview image or video sequences. However, their key yet time-consuming component, motion estimation (ME), is usually not efficient in interviewpoint prediction or disparity estimation (DE), because interviewpoint disparity is completely different from temporal motion existing in the conventional video. Targeting a generic fast DE framework for interviewpoint prediction, we propose a novel DE technique in this paper to accelerate the disparity search by employing epipolar geometry. Theoretical analysis, optimal disparity vector distribution histograms, and experimental results show that the proposed epipolar geometry-based DE can greatly reduce search region and effectively track large and irregular disparity, which is typical in convergent multiview camera setups. Compared with the existing state-of-the-art fast ME approaches, our proposed DE can obtain a similar coding efficiency while achieving a significant speedup for interviewpoint prediction and coding. Moreover, a robustness study shows that the proposed DE algorithm is insensitive to the epipolar geometry estimation noise. Hence, its wide application for multiview image and video coding is promising. Index Terms—Disparity estimation (DE), epipolar geometry, fast motion estimation (ME), H.264/AVC, multiview image, multiview image compression, multiview video, multiview video compression, video coding.

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In  IEEE Transactions on Circuits and Systems for Video Technology

Publisher  Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers, Inc.
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