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Autonomous image background removal for accurate and efficient close-range photogrammetry

Eastwood, Joe; Leach, Richard K; Piano, Samanta

Autonomous image background removal for accurate and efficient close-range photogrammetry Thumbnail


Joe Eastwood


Close-range photogrammetry can be used to reconstruct dense point clouds of an object with very high surface coverage, making it useful for manufacturing metrology tasks such as part inspection and validation. However, compared to competing techniques, data processing times can be slow. In this paper we present a method to autonomously remove the
background from the images within a photogrammetric dataset. We show that using masked images directly in the reconstruction results in much lower data processing times, with lower memory utilisation. Furthermore, we show that the point density on the object surface is
increased while the number of superfluous background points is reduced. Finally, a set of reconstruction results are compared to a set of tactile coordinate measurements.
Reconstructions with the background removed are shown to have a standard deviation in the point to mesh distance of up to 30 µm lower than if the background is not removed. This improvement in standard deviation is likely due to the static background, relative to the object
on the rotation stage, causing triangulation errors when points are detected and matched on this background data. The proposed approach is shown to be robust over several example artefacts and can, therefore, be implemented to improve the measurement efficiency and measurement results of photogrammetry coordinate measurement systems.


Eastwood, J., Leach, R. K., & Piano, S. (2023). Autonomous image background removal for accurate and efficient close-range photogrammetry. Measurement Science and Technology, 34(3), Article 035404.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Nov 21, 2022
Online Publication Date Dec 7, 2022
Publication Date Mar 1, 2023
Deposit Date Dec 14, 2022
Publicly Available Date Jan 3, 2023
Journal Measurement Science and Technology
Print ISSN 0957-0233
Electronic ISSN 1361-6501
Publisher IOP Publishing
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 34
Issue 3
Article Number 035404
Keywords Applied Mathematics; Instrumentation; Engineering (miscellaneous)
Public URL
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