ISPRS Annals of the Photogrammetry, Remote Sensing and Spatial Information Sciences
Publications Copernicus
Articles | Volume III-1
02 Jun 2016
 | 02 Jun 2016


Shuning Lu, Shicun Huang, Zhiqiang Pan, Huawu Deng, David Stanley, and Yubin Xin

Keywords: High Performance Computing, Parallel Computing, Distributed Computing, Automation, Image Matching, DSM Extraction

Abstract. ZY-3 has been acquiring high quality imagery since its launch in 2012 and its tri-stereo (three-view or three-line-array) imagery has become one of the top choices for extracting DSM (Digital Surface Model) products in China over the past few years. The ZY-3 tri-stereo sensors offer users the ability to capture imagery over large regions including an entire territory of a country, such as China, resulting in a large volume of ZY-3 tri-stereo scenes which require timely (e.g., near real time) processing, something that is not currently possible using traditional photogrammetry workstations. This paper presents a high performance computing solution which can efficiently and automatically extract DSM products from ZY-3 tri-stereo imagery. The high performance computing solution leverages certain parallel computing technologies to accelerate computation within an individual scene and then deploys a distributed computing technology to increase the overall data throughput in a robust and efficient manner. By taking advantage of the inherent efficiencies within the high performance computing environment, the DSM extraction process can exploit all combinations offered from a set of tri-stereo images (forward-backword, forward-nadir and backword-nadir). The DSM results merged from all of the potential combinations can minimize blunders (e.g., incorrect matches) and also offer the ability to remove potential occlusions which may exist in a single stereo pair, resulting in improved accuracy and quality versus those that are not merged. Accelerated performance is inherent within each of the individual steps of the DSM extraction workflow, including the collection of ground control points and tie points, image bundle adjustment, the creation of epipolar images, and computing elevations. Preliminary experiments over a large area in China have proven that the high performance computing system can generate high quality and accurate DSM products in a rapid manner.