Mohit Gupta - Shedding Light on 3D Cameras
From Katie Gentilello on September 10th, 2021
The advent (and commoditization) of low-cost 3D cameras is revolutionizing many application domains, including robotics, autonomous navigation, human computer interfaces, and recently even consumer devices such as cell-phones. Most modern 3D cameras (e.g., LiDAR) are active; they consist of a light source that emits coded light into the scene, i.e., its intensity is modulated over space, and/or time. The performance of these cameras is determined by their illumination coding functions.
I will talk about our work on developing a coding theory of active 3D cameras. This theory, for the first time, abstracts several seemingly different 3D camera designs into a common, geometrically intuitive space. Based on this theory, we design novel 3D cameras that achieve up to an order of magnitude higher performance as compared to the current state-of-the art. I will also briefly talk about our work toward developing `All-Weather’ 3D cameras that can operate in extreme real-world conditions, including outdoors (e.g., a robot navigating outdoors in bright sunlight and poor weather), under multi-camera interference (e.g., multiple robots navigating in a shared space such as a warehouse), and handle optically challenging objects such as shiny metal (e.g., for an industrial robot sorting machine parts).