Object Tracking by Detection with Visual and Motion Cues

19 Jan 2021  ·  Niels Ole Salscheider ·

Self-driving cars and other autonomous vehicles need to detect and track objects in camera images. We present a simple online tracking algorithm that is based on a constant velocity motion model with a Kalman filter, and an assignment heuristic. The assignment heuristic relies on four metrics: An embedding vector that describes the appearance of objects and can be used to re-identify them, a displacement vector that describes the object movement between two consecutive video frames, the Mahalanobis distance between the Kalman filter states and the new detections, and a class distance. These metrics are combined with a linear SVM, and then the assignment problem is solved by the Hungarian algorithm. We also propose an efficient CNN architecture that estimates these metrics. Our multi-frame model accepts two consecutive video frames which are processed individually in the backbone, and then optical flow is estimated on the resulting feature maps. This allows the network heads to estimate the displacement vectors. We evaluate our approach on the challenging BDD100K tracking dataset. Our multi-frame model achieves a good MOTA value of 39.1% with low localization error of 0.206 in MOTP. Our fast single-frame model achieves an even lower localization error of 0.202 in MOTP, and a MOTA value of 36.8%.

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