Frequency-Domain Characterization of Optic Flow and Vision-Based Ocellar Sensing for Rotational Motion

Report No. ARL-TR-7974
Authors: Nil Z Gurel, Joseph K Conroy, Timothy Horiuchi, and J Sean Humbert
Date/Pages: April 2017; 72 pages
Abstract: The structure of an animal's eye is determined by the tasks it must perform. While vertebrates rely on their 2 eyes for all visual functions, insects have evolved a wide range of specialized visual organs to support behaviors such as prey capture, predator evasion, mate pursuit, flight stabilization, and navigation. Compound eyes and ocelli constitute the vision-forming and sensing mechanisms of some flying insects. They provide signals useful for flight stabilization and navigation. In contrast to the well-studied compound eye, the ocelli, seen as the second visual system, sense fast luminance changes and allow for fast visual processing. Using a luminance-based sensor that mimics the insect ocelli and a camera-based motion-detection system, frequency-domain characterization of an ocellar sensor and optic flow (due to rotational motion) is analyzed. Inspired by the insect neurons that make use of signals from both vision-sensing mechanisms, complementary properties of ocellar and optic flow estimates are discussed.
Distribution: Approved for public release
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Last Update / Reviewed: April 1, 2017