Robust Ground Plane Tracking in Cluttered Environments from Egocentric Stereo Vision
Estimating the ground plane is often one of the first steps in geometric reasoning processes as it offers easily accessible context knowledge. Especially unconstrained platforms that capture video from egocentric viewpoints can benefit from such knowledge in various ways. A key requirement here is keeping orientation, which can be greatly achieved by keeping track of the ground. We present an approach to keep track of the ground plane in cluttered inner-urban environments using stereo vision in real-time. We fuse a planar model fit in low-resolution disparity data with the direction of the vertical vanishing point. Our experiments show how this effectively decreases the error of plane attitude estimation compared to classic least-squares fitting and allows to track the plane with camera configurations in which the ground is not visible. We evaluate the approach using ground-truth from an inertial measurement unit and demonstrate long-term stability on a dataset of challenging inner city scenes.