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Visual Odometry : Introduction

Modified 2019-04-28 by tanij

Modified 2019-01-07 by pravishsainath


Visual odometry (VO) is the process of estimating the egomotion (pose) of an agent using only the input of a single or multiple cameras attached to it.


Example : video showing the input images and VO computed for a moving vehicle.


Modified 2019-01-07 by pravishsainath


  • 1980 :
    First known VO real-time implementation on a robot by Hans Moraveck PhD thesis (NASA/JPL) for Mars rovers using one sliding camera (sliding stereo). Very first idea of estimating a vehicle’s pose from visual input alone.


  • 1980 - 2000 :
    The VO research was dominated by NASA/JPL in preparation of 2004 Mars mission


  • 2004:
    VO used on a robot on another planet: Mars rovers Spirit and Opportunity


  • 2004 :
    Formally described by Nistér et al. 2004 : the term “visual odometry” coined.

VO was revived in the academic environment. The term VO became popular. The term was selected because vision-based localization is similar to the wheel odometry that estimates motion of a vehicle by integrating the number of turns of its wheels over time.
VO integrates pixel displacements between image frames over time.


Modified 2019-01-07 by pravishsainath


  • Robotics
  • Wearable computing
  • Augmented reality
  • Autonomous vehicles
Because of mathjax bug

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