Research Reports

Freeway Network Traffic Detection and Monitoring Incidents

Principal Investigator:

A Joshi, Stefan Atev, D Fehr, A Drenner, Robert Bodor, Osama Masoud, Nikolaos P Papanikolopoulos

October 2007

Report no. Mn/DOT 2007-40

Projects: Freeway Network Traffic Detection and Monitoring Incidents

Topics: Safety, Traffic Modeling and Data, Traffic Operations

We propose methods to distinguish between moving cast shadows and moving foreground objects in video sequences. Shadow detection is an important part of any surveillance system as it makes object shape recovery possible, as well as improves accuracy of other statistics collection systems. As most such systems assume video frames without shadows, shadows must be dealt with beforehand. We propose a multi-level shadow identification scheme that is generally applicable without restrictions on the number of light sources, illumination conditions, surface orientations, and object sizes. In the first level, we use a background segmentation technique to identify foreground regions that include moving shadows. In the second step, pixel-based decisions are made by comparing the current frame with the background model to distinguish between shadows and actual foreground. In the third step, this result is improved using blob-level reasoning that works on geometric constraints of identified shadow and foreground blobs. Results on various sequences under different illumination conditions show the success of the proposed approach. Second, we propose methods for physical placement of cameras in a site so as to make the most of the number of cameras available.

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