Occlusions and binocular stereo

Davi Geiger, Bruce Ladendorf, Alan Yuille

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Binocular stereo is the process of obtaining depth information from a pair of cameras. In the past, stereo algorithms have had problems at occlusions and have tended to fail there (though sometimes post-processing has been added to mitigate the worst effects). We show that, on the contrary, occlusions can help stereo computation by providing cues for depth discontinuities. We describe a theory for stereo based on the Bayesian approach, using adaptive windows and a prior weak smoothness constraint, which incorporates occlusion. Our model assumes that a disparity discontinuity, along the epipolar line, in one eye always corresponds to an occluded region in the other eye thus, leading to an occlusion constraint. This constraint restricts the space of possible disparity values, thereby simplifying the computations. An estimation of the disparity at occluded features is also discussed in light of psychophysical experiments. Using dynamic programming we can find the optimal solution to our system and the experimental results are good and support the assumptions made by the model.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)211-226
Number of pages16
JournalInternational Journal of Computer Vision
Issue number3
StatePublished - Apr 1 1995


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Software
  • Computer Vision and Pattern Recognition
  • Artificial Intelligence

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