Automated Techniques for Extracting Four Dimensional Space-time Data from Ground-based Imagery of Space Objects

Award Information
Agency: Department of Defense
Branch: Air Force
Contract: FA9451-05-C-0014
Agency Tracking Number: F041-005-1760
Amount: $749,991.00
Phase: Phase II
Program: SBIR
Awards Year: 2005
Solicitation Year: 2004
Solicitation Topic Code: AF04-005
Solicitation Number: 2004.1
Small Business Information
STELLAR SCIENCE LTD CO.
401 Serenity Ct SE, Albuquerque, NM, 87123
DUNS: 092174635
HUBZone Owned: N
Woman Owned: N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: N
Principal Investigator
 Conrad Poelman
 Chief Scientist
 (505) 453-2713
 cpdodsbir@stellarscience.com
Business Contact
 Conrad Poelman
Title: Owner
Phone: (505) 453-2713
Email: cpdodsbir@stellarscience.com
Research Institution
N/A
Abstract
Stellar Science has developed innovative techniques for the automated processing of sequences of images into three dimensional models in near real time, and demonstrated those techniques on space surveillance imagery. Using feasibility studies that rigorously characterize the performance of several well-known shape-from-motion techniques, in Phase II we will develop a fully-operational system that incorporates algorithms for tracking over very large (> 45 degrees) rotations between individual image frames, accommodates articulating components, utilizes a priori sensor knowledge when available, and creates robust shapes to more closely approach true “models” of satellites. We have two unique strategies to achieve these objectives. This first is the integration of the feature tracking and shape reconstruction stages to effectively accommodate both noisy data and the occlusion and reappearance of features as the object rotates. The second strategy builds an object shape with a meshed surface or a set of voxels derived using the “space carving” technique. This two-front approach will produce a robust, well-engineered system capable of building 3D models of satellites from real-world space surveillance imagery. Stellar Science brings to this solution unique operational experience in both space surveillance imagery and shape-from-motion techniques and a proven record of delivering robust scientific algorithms and software.

* information listed above is at the time of submission.

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