Comparison of feature point detectors for multimodal image registration in plant phenotyping

Autoři: Michael Henke aff001;  Astrid Junker aff001;  Kerstin Neumann aff001;  Thomas Altmann aff001;  Evgeny Gladilin aff001
Působiště autorů: Leibniz Institute of Plant Genetics and Crop Plant Research (IPK Gatersleben), OT Gatersleben, Corrensstr. 3, D-06466 Stadt Seeland, Germany aff001
Vyšlo v časopise: PLoS ONE 14(9)
Kategorie: Research Article
prolekare.web.journal.doi_sk: 10.1371/journal.pone.0221203


With the introduction of multi-camera systems in modern plant phenotyping new opportunities for combined multimodal image analysis emerge. Visible light (VIS), fluorescence (FLU) and near-infrared images enable scientists to study different plant traits based on optical appearance, biochemical composition and nutrition status. A straightforward analysis of high-throughput image data is hampered by a number of natural and technical factors including large variability of plant appearance, inhomogeneous illumination, shadows and reflections in the background regions. Consequently, automated segmentation of plant images represents a big challenge and often requires an extensive human-machine interaction. Combined analysis of different image modalities may enable automatisation of plant segmentation in “difficult” image modalities such as VIS images by utilising the results of segmentation of image modalities that exhibit higher contrast between plant and background, i.e. FLU images. For efficient segmentation and detection of diverse plant structures (i.e. leaf tips, flowers), image registration techniques based on feature point (FP) matching are of particular interest. However, finding reliable feature points and point pairs for differently structured plant species in multimodal images can be challenging. To address this task in a general manner, different feature point detectors should be considered. Here, a comparison of seven different feature point detectors for automated registration of VIS and FLU plant images is performed. Our experimental results show that straightforward image registration using FP detectors is prone to errors due to too large structural difference between FLU and VIS modalities. We show that structural image enhancement such as background filtering and edge image transformation significantly improves performance of FP algorithms. To overcome the limitations of single FP detectors, combination of different FP methods is suggested. We demonstrate application of our enhanced FP approach for automated registration of a large amount of FLU/VIS images of developing plant species acquired from high-throughput phenotyping experiments.

Klíčová slova:

Arabidopsis thaliana – Flowering plants – Fluorescence imaging – Image analysis – Imaging techniques – Leaves – Maize – Wheat


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