Coupling Rendering and Generative Adversarial Networks for Artificial SAS Image Generation

Acquisition of Synthetic Aperture Sonar (SAS) datasets is bottlenecked by the costly deployment of SAS imaging systems, and even when data acquisition is possible,the data is often skewed towards containing barren seafloor rather than objects of interest. We present a novel pipeline, called SAS GAN, which couples an optical renderer with a generative adversarial network (GAN) to synthesize realistic SAS images of targets on the seafloor. This coupling enables high levels of SAS image realism while enabling control over image geometry and parameters. We demonstrate qualitative results by presenting examples of images created with our pipeline. We also present quantitative results through the use of t-SNE and the Fr\'echet Inception Distance to argue that our generated SAS imagery potentially augments SAS datasets more effectively than an off-the-shelf GAN.

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