Sky pixel detection in outdoor imagery using an adaptive algorithm and machine learning

by   Kerry A. Nice, et al.

Computer vision techniques allow automated detection of sky pixels in outdoor imagery. Multiple applications exist for this information across a large number of research areas. In urban climate, sky detection is an important first step in gathering information about urban morphology and sky view factors. However, capturing accurate results remains challenging and becomes even more complex using imagery captured under a variety of lighting and weather conditions. To address this problem, we present a new sky pixel detection system demonstrated to produce accurate results using a wide range of outdoor imagery types. Images are processed using a selection of mean-shift segmentation, K-means clustering, and Sobel filters to mark sky pixels in the scene. The algorithm for a specific image is chosen by a convolutional neural network, trained with 25,000 images from the Skyfinder data set, reaching 82 This selection step allows the sky marking to follow an adaptive process and to use different techniques and parameters to best suit a particular image. An evaluation of fourteen different techniques and parameter sets shows that no single technique can perform with high accuracy across varied Skyfinder and Google Street View data sets. However, by using our adaptive process, large increases in accuracy are observed. The resulting system is shown to perform better than other published techniques.


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