In this thesis, the Recursive-Random Sample Consensus (R-RANSAC) algorithm is applied to a vision-based, cooperative target tracking system. Unlike previous applications, which focused on a single camera platform tracking targets in the image frame, this work uses multiple camera platforms to track targets in the inertial or world frame. The process of tracking targets in the inertial frame is commonly referred to as geolocation.In practical applications sensor biases cause the geolocated target estimates to be biased from truth. The method for cooperative estimation developed in this thesis first estimates the relative rotational and translational biases that exist between tracks from different vehicles. It then accounts for the biases and performs the track-to-track association, which determines if the tracks originate from the same target. The track-to-track association is based on a sliding window approach that accounts for the correlation between tracks sharing common process noise and the correlation in time between individual estimation errors, yielding a chi-squared distribution. Typically, accounting for the correlation in time requires the inversion of a Nnx x Nnx covariance matrix, where N is the length of the window and nx is the number of states. Note that this inversion must occur every time the track-to-track association is to be performed. However, it is shown that by making a steady-state assumption, the inverse has a simple closed-form solution, requiring the inversion of only two nx x nx matrices, and can be calculated offline. Distributed data fusion is performed on tracks where the hypothesis test is satisfied. The proposed method is demonstrated on data collected from an actual vision-based tracking system.A novel method is also developed to cooperatively estimate the location and size of occlusions. This capability is important for future target tracking research involving optimized path planning/gimbal pointing, where a geographical map is unavailable. The method is demonstrated in simulation.



College and Department

Ira A. Fulton College of Engineering and Technology; Electrical and Computer Engineering



Date Submitted


Document Type





cooperative estimation, multiple target tracking, geolocation, recursive RANSAC, bias estimation, track-to-track association, track fusion, occlusion estimation