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Proceedings Paper

Real-time orthorectification by FPGA-based hardware acceleration
Author(s): David Kuo; Don Gordon
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Paper Abstract

Orthorectification that corrects the perspective distortion of remote sensing imagery, providing accurate geolocation and ease of correlation to other images is a valuable first-step in image processing for information extraction. However, the large amount of metadata and the floating-point matrix transformations required to operate on each pixel make this a computation and I/O (Input/Output) intensive process. As result much imagery is either left unprocessed or loses timesensitive value in the long processing cycle. However, the computation on each pixel can be reduced substantially by using computational results of the neighboring pixels and accelerated by special pipelined hardware architecture in one to two orders of magnitude. A specialized coprocessor that is implemented inside an FPGA (Field Programmable Gate Array) chip and surrounded by vendorsupported hardware IP (Intellectual Property) shares the computation workload with CPU through PCI-Express interface. The ultimate speed of one pixel per clock (125 MHz) is achieved by the pipelined systolic array architecture. The optimal partition between software and hardware, the timing profile among image I/O and computation, and the highly automated GUI (Graphical User Interface) that fully exploits this speed increase to maximize overall image production throughput will also be discussed. The software that runs on a workstation with the acceleration hardware orthorectifies 16 Megapixels per second, which is 16 times faster than without the hardware. It turns the production time from months to days. A real-life successful story of an imaging satellite company that adopted such workstations for their orthorectified imagery production will be presented. The potential candidacy of the image processing computation that can be accelerated more efficiently by the same approach will also be analyzed.

Paper Details

Date Published: 23 October 2010
PDF: 7 pages
Proc. SPIE 7830, Image and Signal Processing for Remote Sensing XVI, 78300Y (23 October 2010); doi: 10.1117/12.864816
Show Author Affiliations
David Kuo, Cardio Logic, Inc. (United States)
Don Gordon, Cardio Logic, Inc. (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 7830:
Image and Signal Processing for Remote Sensing XVI
Lorenzo Bruzzone, Editor(s)

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