Seeing Beyond the Patch: Scale-Adaptive Semantic Segmentation of High-resolution Remote Sensing Imagery based on Reinforcement Learning

ICCV 2023  ·  Yinhe Liu, Sunan Shi, Junjue Wang, Yanfei Zhong ·

In remote sensing imagery analysis, patch-based methods have limitations in capturing information beyond the sliding window. This shortcoming poses a significant challenge in processing complex and variable geo-objects, which results in semantic inconsistency in segmentation results. To address this challenge, we propose a dynamic scale perception framework, named GeoAgent, which adaptively captures appropriate scale context information outside the image patch based on the different geo-objects. In GeoAgent, each image patch's states are represented by a global thumbnail and a location mask. The global thumbnail provides context beyond the patch, and the location mask guides the perceived spatial relationships. The scale-selection actions are performed through a Scale Control Agent (SCA). A feature indexing module is proposed to enhance the ability of the agent to distinguish the current image patch's location. The action switches the patch scale and context branch of a dual-branch segmentation network that extracts and fuses the features of multi-scale patches. The GeoAgent adjusts the network parameters to perform the appropriate scale-selection action based on the reward received for the selected scale. The experimental results, using two publicly available datasets and our newly constructed dataset WUSU, demonstrate that GeoAgent outperforms previous segmentation methods, particularly for large-scale mapping applications.

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