Three-dimensional scene flow

Sundar Vedula, Simon Baker, Peter Rander, Robert Collins, Takeo Kanade

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

237 Scopus citations


Just as optical flow is the two-dimensional motion of points in an image, scene flow is the three-dimensional motion of points in the world. The fundamental difficulty with optical flow is that only the normal flow can be computed directly from the image measurements, without some form of smoothing or regularization. In this paper, we begin by showing that the same fundamental limitation applies to scene flow; however, many cameras are used to image the scene. There are then two choices when computing scene flow: 1) perform the regularization in the images or 2) perform the regularization on the surface of the object in the scene. In this paper, we choose to compute scene flow using regularization in the images. We describe three algorithms, the first two for computing scene flow from optical flows and the third for constraining scene structure from the inconsistencies in multiple optical flows.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)475-480
Number of pages6
JournalIEEE Transactions on Pattern Analysis and Machine Intelligence
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 2005

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Software
  • Computer Vision and Pattern Recognition
  • Computational Theory and Mathematics
  • Artificial Intelligence
  • Applied Mathematics


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