Image classification-based ground filtering of point clouds extracted from UAV-based aerial photos

Yilmaz V. , Konakoglu B. , ŞERİFOĞLU YILMAZ Ç. , GÜNGÖR O. , GÖKALP E.

GEOCARTO INTERNATIONAL, vol.33, no.3, pp.310-320, 2018 (Journal Indexed in SCI) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 33 Issue: 3
  • Publication Date: 2018
  • Doi Number: 10.1080/10106049.2016.1250825
  • Page Numbers: pp.310-320
  • Keywords: Digital elevation model, point cloud, unmanned aerial vehicle, ground filtering, image classification, AIRBORNE LIDAR DATA, DEM GENERATION, ALGORITHMS, AGREEMENT, ACCURACY, AREAS, MODEL, DTM


With the advent of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) for mapping applications, it is possible to generate 3D dense point clouds using stereo images. This technology, however, has some disadvantages when compared to Light Detection and Ranging (LiDAR) system. Unlike LiDAR, digital cameras mounted on UAVs are incapable of viewing beneath the canopy, which leads to sparse points on the bare earth surface. In such cases, it is more challenging to remove points belonging to above-ground objects using ground filtering algorithms generated especially for LiDAR data. To tackle this problem, a methodology employing supervised image classification for filtering 3D point clouds is proposed in this study. A classified image is overlapped with the point cloud to determine the ground points to be used for digital elevation model (DEM) generation. Quantitative evaluation results showed that filtering the point cloud with this methodology has a good potential for high-resolution DEM generation.