UCL logo

UCL Discovery

UCL home » Library Services » Electronic resources » UCL Discovery

3-D uncertainty-based topographic change detection with structure-from-motion photogrammetry: precision maps for ground control and directly georeferenced surveys

James, MR; Robson, S; Smith, MW; (2017) 3-D uncertainty-based topographic change detection with structure-from-motion photogrammetry: precision maps for ground control and directly georeferenced surveys. Earth Surface Processes and Landforms , 42 (12) pp. 1769-1788. 10.1002/esp.4125. Green open access

[img]
Preview
Text
Robson _James et al 2017 DEM (1).pdf - ["content_typename_Accepted version" not defined]

Download (1MB) | Preview

Abstract

Structure‐from‐motion (SfM) photogrammetry is revolutionising the collection of detailed topographic data, but insight into geomorphological processes is currently restricted by our limited understanding of SfM survey uncertainties. Here, we present an approach that, for the first time, specifically accounts for the spatially variable precision inherent to photo‐based surveys, and enables confidence‐bounded quantification of 3D topographic change. The method uses novel 3D precision maps that describe the 3D photogrammetric and georeferencing uncertainty, and determines change through an adapted state‐of‐the‐art fully 3D point‐cloud comparison (M3C2), which is particularly valuable for complex topography. We introduce this method by: (1) using simulated UAV surveys, processed in photogrammetric software, to illustrate the spatial variability of precision and the relative influences of photogrammetric (e.g. image network geometry, tie point quality) and georeferencing (e.g. control measurement) considerations; (2) we then present a new Monte Carlo procedure for deriving this information using standard SfM software and integrate it into confidence‐bounded change detection; before (3) demonstrating geomorphological application in which we use benchmark TLS data for validation and then estimate sediment budgets through differencing annual SfM surveys of an eroding badland. We show how 3D precision maps enable more probable erosion patterns to be identified than existing analyses, and how a similar overall survey precision could have been achieved with direct survey georeferencing for camera position data with precision half as good as the GCPs'. Where precision is limited by weak georeferencing (e.g. camera positions with multi‐metre precision, such as from a consumer UAV), then overall survey precision can scale as n‐½ of the control precision (n = number of images). Our method also provides variance–covariance information for all parameters. Thus, we now open the door for SfM practitioners to use the comprehensive analyses that have underpinned rigorous photogrammetric approaches over the last half‐century.

Type: Article
Title: 3-D uncertainty-based topographic change detection with structure-from-motion photogrammetry: precision maps for ground control and directly georeferenced surveys
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1002/esp.4125
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1002/esp.4125
Language: English
Additional information: This version is the author accepted manuscript. For information on re-use, please refer to the publisher’s terms and conditions.
Keywords: Science & Technology, Physical Sciences, Geography, Physical, Geosciences, Multidisciplinary, Physical Geography, Geology, precision maps, DEM uncertainty, structure-from-motion, georeferencing, UAV, DIGITAL ELEVATION MODELS, GEOMORPHOLOGICAL RESEARCH, AERIAL PHOTOGRAMMETRY, DEPOSITION VOLUMES, COMPLEX TOPOGRAPHY, SYSTEMATIC-ERROR, LASER SCANNER, MICRO-UAV, EROSION, IMAGERY
UCL classification: UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of Engineering Science
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of Engineering Science > Dept of Civil, Environ and Geomatic Eng
URI: http://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10060986
Downloads since deposit
13Downloads
Download activity - last month
Download activity - last 12 months
Downloads by country - last 12 months

Archive Staff Only

View Item View Item