Sky segmentation with ultraviolet images can be used for navigation

Thomas Stone, Michael Mangan, Paul Ardin, Barbara Webb

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter (peer-reviewed)peer-review


Inspired by ant navigation, we explore a method for sky segmentation using ultraviolet (UV) light. A standard camera is adapted to allow collection of outdoor images containing light in the visible range, in UV only and in green only. Automatic segmentation of the sky region using UV only is significantly more accurate and far more consistent than visible wavelengths over a wide range of locations, times and weather conditions, and can be accomplished with a very low complexity algorithm. We apply this method to obtain compact binary (sky vs non-sky) images from panoramic UV images taken along a 2km route in an urban environment. Using either sequence SLAM or a visual compass on these images produces reliable localisation and orientation on a subsequent traversal of the route under different weather conditions.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings Robotics: Science and Systems
Place of PublicationBerkeley, USA
Number of pages9
Publication statusPublished - 2014


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