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Sensors 2011, 11(3), 3303-3326; doi:10.3390/s110303303

Contrast-Independent Biologically Inspired Motion Detection

Center of Excellence ‘Cognitive Interaction Technology’, Bielefeld University, D-33594 Bielefeld, Germany
Computer Engineering Group, Faculty of Technology, Bielefeld University, D-33594 Bielefeld, Germany
Department of Neurobiology, Faculty of Biology, Bielefeld University, D-33594 Bielefeld, Germany
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 28 January 2011 / Revised: 15 March 2011 / Accepted: 17 March 2011 / Published: 18 March 2011
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Optic flow, i.e., retinal image movement resulting from ego-motion, is a crucial source of information used for obstacle avoidance and course control in flying insects. Optic flow analysis may prove promising for mobile robotics although it is currently not among the standard techniques. Insects have developed a computationally cheap analysis mechanism for image motion. Detailed computational models, the so-called elementary motion detectors (EMDs), describe motion detection in insects. However, the technical application of EMDs is complicated by the strong effect of local pattern contrast on their motion response. Here we present augmented versions of an EMD, the (s)cc-EMDs, which normalise their responses for contrast and thereby reduce the sensitivity to contrast changes. Thus, velocity changes of moving natural images are reflected more reliably in the detector response. The (s)cc-EMDs can easily be implemented in hardware and software and can be a valuable novel visual motion sensor for mobile robots.
Keywords: image motion; image contrast; motion detection; natural images; bioinspiration image motion; image contrast; motion detection; natural images; bioinspiration
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY 3.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Babies, B.; Lindemann, J.P.; Egelhaaf, M.; Möller, R. Contrast-Independent Biologically Inspired Motion Detection. Sensors 2011, 11, 3303-3326.

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