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Journal of Computer Applications (JCA) ISSN: 0974-1925, Volume V, Issue 3, 2012

Vision-Based Vehicle Speed Measurement System

Prakash.V a,*, Devi.P b,1 Abstract - Vision-based vehicle speed measurement (VSM) is one of the most convenient methods available in intelligent transportation systems. A new algorithm for estimating individual vehicle speed based on two consecutive images captured from a traffic safety camera system. Its principles are first, both images are transformed from the image plane to the 3D world coordinates based on the calibrated camera parameters. Second, the difference of the two transformed images is calculated, resulting in the background being eliminated and vehicles in the two images are mapped onto one image. Finally, a block feature of the vehicle closest to the ground is matched to estimate vehicle travel distance and speed.
Index Terms images, vehicle, vehicle speed measurement.

I. INTRODUCTION Intelligent transportation systems are becoming more important due to their advantages of saving lives, money, and time. Acquiring traffic information, such as lane width traffic volume (the number of travelling vehicles per time period through a position in a lane), traffic density (the number of total vehicles in a given area at a given time) and vehicle speed, these are the key part of intelligent transportation systems, and such information is used to manage and control traffic. It focuses on vehicle speed since reducing speed can help to reduce accidents. Intelligent transportation systems is a new approach to estimate vehicle speed using video sequence data recorded form roadway surveillance cameras under occlusion. Rather than detecting or tracking individual vehicles in each image frame as is conventionally done, It transform the sequence of frames into a graphical representation of vehicle trajectories using time stacks. Where a time stack is constructed from a video sequence out of temporally successive slices of the same 1D region in the frame. Most vision based traffic monitoring systems (VBTMS) attempt to detect and track discrete vehicles. But such segmentation and tracking is hampered by occlusion, changes in lightning conditions and shadows. Many Solutions have been developed, Segmenting discrete vehicles for detection and tracking in video is difficult, measuring the speed of vehicle features is much simpler and so this work seeks to bypass the need for segmenting each vehicle when measuring traffic speed over

time and space. Proposed system consists of 5 steps to estimate mean speeds: (1) Camera calibration from image to world co ordinate transformation to generate velocity fields, (2) Video stabilization to decrease unwanted camera motion in the video sequence, (3) Pre-processing using edge removal apply image enhancement for background estimation and shadow removal, (4) Background estimation and shadow removal, (5) Cubic spline interpolation for trajectory approximation. The overall intention is to implement a vision-based speed sensor considering occlusion caused by overlapping vehicles. It is handling the occluders rather than the occluded vehicles. For almost two decades these CCTV systems were strictly used to extend the view available to human traffic managers. The objective behind these video-based traffic surveillance systems is to extract important traffic parameters for traffic analysis and management such as vehicle speed, vehicle path, flow rate and density. Vision-based vehicle detection is intended to be a lower cost alternative to many other detector technologies, e.g., loop detectors. Loop detectors are essentially metal detectors embedded in the pavement, and have been the most common detector to record traffic parameters. Depending on deployment these detectors can collect information such as vehicle length, speed and flow rate. However, loop detectors only detect vehicles directly overhead. In contrast, vision-based systems collect information over an extended space compared to the conventional vehicle detection systems. II. BRIEF REVIEW OF VISION BASED VEHICLE SPEED MEASUREMENT SYSTEMS The block diagram of the proposed algorithm is depicted in Fig. 1. To begin with, the two consecutive images taken through a perspective view are transformed from their 2D image plane to 3D world coordinates using camera parameters calculated from lane-marking calibration. As there is no height information immediately available from the two images, only the X-Y plane in 3D is considered for all subsequent estimation. From the two reconstructed images, an image differencing is applied so that the two vehicles are overlaid on one resultant image. Although this can effectively remove the background features as the time difference between the two images is small, it also resulted in a large amount of noise and holes along the boundaries of the vehicles. These are removed by a carefully selected threshold and morphological operations to obtain a combined vehicle mask. After that, a block matching algorithm is applied, which includes specifying the block and matching it within a search window. As the 3D X-Y plane is given in physical dimension (meters in this case), he distance between the two matched

Manuscript received 8/Sept/2012. Manuscript selected 11/Sept/2012. Prakash.V ,Sri Ramakrishna Institute of Technology , Coimbatore, India E-mail: Devi.P, Assistant Professor, Dept of ECE, Sri Ramakrishna Institute of Technology , Coimbatore, India, E-mail:


Vision-Based Vehicle Speed Measurement System

blocks denotes the distance traveled by the vehicle between the two consecutive images. Speed is then estimated by taking this value and dividing it by the time taken between the two images.

Let Q= (XQ, YQ, ZQ) be an arbitrary point in the 3-D world coordinate and q=(xq,yq) be the corresponding 2-D image coordinates of Q. A forward mapping function,

Figure 3. Image Reconstruction Figure 1. Diagram of the Proposed Algorithm

Which defines the transformation from a point in the world coordinates to a point in the image coordinates is given as,

Camera Calibration The purpose of camera calibration is to establish a relationship between the 3-D world coordinates and the corresponding 2-D image coordinates. Position of Camera

Figure 2. Position of Camera

It adopts the camera model proposed in which is depicted in Fig. 2. In essence, this model describes all the extrinsic parameters (camera installation height, installation angle, image plane and swing angle) and an intrinsic parameter (focal length). Image Reconstruction The definitions of these parameters are: P an angle is the horizontal angle from the Y axis of the world coordinate system to the projection of the optical axis of the camera on the X-Y plane measured in the anti-clockwise direction. Tilt angle is the vertical angle of the optical axis of the camera with respect to the X-Y plane of the world coordinate system. Swing angle is the rotational angle of the camera along its optical axis. Focal length is the distance from the image plane to the centre of the camera lens along the optical axis of the camera, while camera height is the perpendicular distance from the centre of the camera lens to the X-Y plane. These parameters can be estimated using existing road lane markings without having to measure them physically. Without detailed derivation, the mapping between the image plane and world plane is quoted below.

Equations define the transformation between the world and image coordinates.

Figure 4. Two consecutive images

Lane markings that form a parallelogram can be used to estimate the camera parameters, from which Equations can be solved. In other words, every pixel of the two consecutive images can be transformed to the 3D coordinates (with Z=0) using Equations , and the corresponding images in X-Y plane can be reconstructed, the view along the Z-axis perpendicular to the road plane, the distance traversed by the vehicle represents the actual distance travelled. However, it should be


Journal of Computer Applications (JCA) ISSN: 0974-1925, Volume V, Issue 3, 2012 noted that this is only true for points on the road plane. Other points that are not on the road plane do not represent the same as height information is not available. Therefore, the problem in matching is not finding the most correlated blocks between the two vehicle images as, but to make sure that the feature points in the block are on the road surface as well. The most reliable points in these images for the purpose are the points where the wheels touch the ground. Unfortunately, these points are extremely difficult to be determined. For the reason the subsequent estimation is based on the shadow of the back bumper that casts on the ground. Although this feature is relatively easy to find, this is also represents a source of error due to road colour change, illumination change and shadow. Background Componsation and Vehicle Detection Separating the vehicle from the road (background) is a major issue in detecting a vehicle from a captured image. The background image is an image that contains no moving objects. As the roads scene changes every second, it is impossible to get a consistent background image from a single image and create the empty background image with a series of images containing the moving objects to create an empty background image from a few captured images. This algorithm uses the Gaussian mean and the standard deviation between pixels from each image to ignore the absurd value pixels that represent the moving object. Background subtraction computes the inter frame difference (IFD) between the background image and the incoming image from the camera. The result of the IFD process, i.e., the foreground image, involves a black background with floating vehicles. Image difference is a widely used method for the detection of motion changes. The interframe difference (IFD) is calculated by performing a pixel-by-pixel subtraction between two images.. In particular, after creating the background, displacements can be seen between the incoming frames and the generated background. Moving Region Extraction If a background reference image is available, it can easily extract the vehicle masks of each image and estimate the vehicle position directly. On the premise that no background reference image is available, it regard one of the two images as a background reference, then perform conventional vehicle mask extraction on the other image and finally get an overlaid vehicle mask. Morphological Process A simple vehicle mask extraction method was adopted, which includes three steps: temporal differencing, thresholding and morphological operations. First, It overlay one image onto the other by taking an absolute difference between the two images. This results in the image as depicted in Fig.5(a). For colour images and obtain the absolute difference in each colour channel first and then average them to a gray level image. The image depicted in Fig. 5(a) is then threshold to produce a binary image as depicted in Fig.5(b). The threshold, T, is a predefined value to accommodate small pixel intensity variation. After that, morphological opening is used to clean up all the isolated points and morphological closing is used to join the disconnected vehicle components together, resulting in the extracted vehicle mask as shown in Figures.



Figure 5. (a) Binary image after thresholding. (b) Vehicle mask after morphological operations.

In general, the case as depicted in Fig. represents a typical scenario. By computing the connected components in the binary image, it has two blobs which represent the masks of two individual vehicles. From the distance of the bottom edge of the two blobs, displacement of the vehicle in two consecutive frames can be roughly estimated, which could be refined by block matching. However, for vehicles that are travelling at low speed, or have long length or the two consecutive images are taken at a shorter time. Block Matching In this Section, the block matching algorithm (BMA) estimates motion between two images or two video frames using "blocks" of pixels. First, a source block is defined in terms of a horizontal base line, a fixed height and a variable width according to the size of the mask. The blob shown in Fig.6 is part of the lower blob from the masking image, in which a horizontal base line is drawn across the lowest part of the blob. From the base line, an upper boundary of k pixel above the line and a lower boundary also of k pixels below the line are defined. As the upper boundary line intersects the vehicle mask, the left and right boundaries are defined by the width of the mask intersected by the upper boundary line. This defines a source block of 2kw in size.

Figure 6. Definition of Source Block.

With these boundaries, it has a block defined in the first reconstructed image as the source block. The search is performed in the second reconstructed image. The mean absolute difference (MAD) measurement between the source block and candidate blocks is employed as a criterion in proposed matching algorithm and roughly estimated displacement of the vehicle. The underlying supposition behind motion estimation is that the patterns corresponding to objects and background in a frame of video sequence move within the frame to form corresponding objects on the subsequent frame. The idea behind block matching is to divide the current frame into a matrix of macro blocks that


Vision-Based Vehicle Speed Measurement System

are then compared with corresponding block and its adjacent neighbours in the previous frame to create a vector that stipulates the movement of a macro block from one location to another in the previous frame. This movement calculated for all the macro blocks comprising a frame, constitutes the motion estimated in the current frame. The search area for a good macro block match is constrained up to p pixels on all fours sides of the corresponding macro block in previous frame.

of day-time images, the results estimated by the proposed method and reference speed. IV. CONCLUSION AND FUTURE DIRECTION In conclusion, a novel method for estimating individual vehicle speed using two consecutive images from a traffic surveillance camera has been proposed. Compared with speed from radar, the averaged estimation errors for day-time cases is 3.27%, while for night-time cases is 8.51%. Future work will be focused on the block matching accuracy and the robustness of the algorithm against large changes in ambient illumination conditions. REFERENCES
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Figure 7. Travel Distance Estimation

Velocity Measurement Once a block is matched, travelled distance in pixels, PD, of the vehicle between the two images is represented by the distance between the source block and the matched block. Vehicle speed is the distance travelled normalized to physical distance in m, and divided by the time taken to traverse that distance, which is given by,

Where, PD R t v

- Travelled distance in pixels, - Resolution of reconstructed images, - Time interval between the two images, - Estimated speed


V. Prakash received the BE degree in Electronics and Communication Engineering from Sri Ramakrishna Institute of Technology, Anna University Coimbatore in 2012. He is an active member of IETE. He had presented national conferences and international conferences in various fields He had done the project in the area of Digital Image Processing. His area of interest is Vehicular technology, Digital Electronics, Digital Image Processing. P. Devi received the BE degree in Electronics and Communication Engineering from VLB Janakiammal College of Engineering and Technology, Anna University Chennai in 2009 and the ME degree in Communication Systems from Sri Krishna College of Engineering and Technology, Anna University Coimbatore in 2011. Currently working in Sri Ramakrishna Institute of Technology as an Assistant Professor in ECE Department. She has one year teaching experience. She has presented the papers in the national conference. Under her guidance, the final year students are doing their project in various fields. Her field of interest is Digital Image Processing.

Figure 8. Speed of the vehicles

In this experiment, we evaluate the accuracy of the proposed method in estimating individual vehicle speed from real traffic images at day-time as well as night-time, by comparing the estimated value with the speed measured by a Doppler speed radar system. All the test images are taken by a surveillance camera at 0.5 seconds apart, with the size of 12801024 and 24 bit color depth mode. We first calculate the reconstructed images as described in Section 2.2 with resolution of 10 pixels/meter, and then threshold the 256 gray level frame difference using a threshold of 30 to generate the vehicle mask. k, sxand syin block matching period were set to 10 pixels, 20 pixels and 10 pixels respectively. For the 31 sets