Technical Foundation and Calibration Methods for Time-of-Flight Cameras

Abstract

Current Time-of-Flight approaches mainly incorporate an continuous wave intensity modulation approach. The phase reconstruction is performed using multiple phase images with different phase shifts which is equivalent to sampling the inherent correlation function at different locations. This active imaging approach delivers a very specific set of influences, on the signal processing side as well as on the optical side, which all have an effect on the resulting depth quality. Applying ToF information in real application therefore requires to tackle these effects in terms of specific calibration approaches. This survey gives an overview over the current state of the art in ToF sensor calibration. 1 Technological Foundations Time-of-Flight (ToF) cameras provide an elegant and efficient way to capture 3D geometric information of real environments in real-time. However, due to their operational principle, ToF cameras are subject to a large variety of measurement error sources. Over the last decade, an important number of investigations concerning these error sources were reported and have shown that they were caused by factors such as camera parameters and properties (sensor temperature, chip design, etc), environment configuration and the sensor hardware principle. Even the distances measured, the primary purpose of ToF cameras, have non linear error. ToF sensors usually provide two measurement frames at the same time from data acquired by the same pixel array; the depth and amplitude images. The amplitude image corresponds to the amount of returning active light signal and is also considered a strong indicator of quality/reliability of measurements. Camera calibration is one of the most important and essential step for Computer Vision and Computer Graphics applications and leads generally to a significant improvement of the global system output. In traditional greyscale imaging camera calibration is required for factors such as lens dependent barrel and pincushion distortion, also an issue in ToF imaging. In ToF cameras the on-board M. Grzegorzek et al. (Eds.): Time-of-Flight and Depth Imaging, LNCS 8200, pp. 3–24, 2013. c © Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2013

DOI: 10.1007/978-3-642-44964-2_1

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@inproceedings{Lefloch2013TechnicalFA, title={Technical Foundation and Calibration Methods for Time-of-Flight Cameras}, author={Damien Lefloch and Rahul Nair and Frank Lenzen and Henrik Sch{\"a}fer and Lee V. Streeter and Michael J. Cree and Reinhard Koch and Andreas Kolb}, booktitle={Time-of-Flight and Depth Imaging}, year={2013} }