System for monitoring condition outside vehicle using imaged picture by a plurality of television cameras

  • US 5,410,346 A
  • Filed: 03/15/1993
  • Issued: 04/25/1995
  • Est. Priority Date: 03/23/1992
  • Status: Expired due to Term
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First Claim
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1. A system for monitoring conditions outside a vehicle having at least a pair of cameras mounted on said vehicle for taking pictures of one or more objects outside of said vehicle, comprising:

  • a picture imaging system for imaging said one or more objects in pictures taken by said cameras in a predetermined region outside said vehicle and for generating a picture signal representative of said pictures;

    picture processing means responsive to said picture signal for calculating a distance distribution over an entire picture;

    first three dimensional window setting means for setting a first three dimensional window representative of a three dimensional space area including a white line of a road imaged by said picture imaging system, based upon an estimated position of the white line on the road;

    linear element detecting means responsive to said distance distribution for detecting three-dimensional linear elements within said first three dimensional window and for producing a road model based upon one or more detected linear elements;

    road shape judgment means responsive to said road model for judging a reasonableness of said three-dimensional linear elements and for modifying said road model based upon said judging;

    road shape estimation means for estimating a position of the white line on the road on a basis of said distance distribution;

    object detection means responsive to said distance distribution and said road model for detecting a presence of an object within said entire picture by dividing said picture into a plurality of picture information portions;

    second three-dimensional window setting means responsive to a detected object for setting a second three-dimensional window representative of a second three-dimensional space area including an object imaged by said picture imaging system;

    object contour image extraction means responsive to said distance distribution and said second three dimensional window for extracting only data within said second three-dimensional window from said plurality of picture information portions in order to derive a contour and a position of a detected object so as to precisely predict a sudden movement of a detected object.

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