The International Archives of the Photogrammetry, Remote Sensing and Spatial Information Sciences
Publications Copernicus
Articles | Volume XLII-2/W3
23 Feb 2017
 | 23 Feb 2017


R. Koch, S. May, and A. Nüchter

Keywords: Robotics, 3D laser scanning, Measurement, Error, Detection, Segmentation, Correction, Algorithms

Abstract. 3D laser scanners are favoured sensors for mapping in mobile service robotics at indoor and outdoor applications, since they deliver precise measurements at a wide scanning range. The resulting maps are detailed since they have a high resolution. Based on these maps robots navigate through rough terrain, fulfil advanced manipulation, and inspection tasks. In case of specular reflective and transparent objects, e.g., mirrors, windows, shiny metals, the laser measurements get corrupted. Based on the type of object and the incident angle of the incoming laser beam there are three results possible: a measurement point on the object plane, a measurement behind the object plane, and a measurement of a reflected object. It is important to detect such situations to be able to handle these corrupted points. This paper describes why it is difficult to distinguish between specular reflective and transparent surfaces. It presents a 3DReflection- Pre-Filter Approach to identify specular reflective and transparent objects in point clouds of a multi-echo laser scanner. Furthermore, it filters point clouds from influences of such objects and extract the object properties for further investigations. Based on an Iterative-Closest-Point-algorithm reflective objects are identified. Object surfaces and points behind surfaces are masked according to their location. Finally, the processed point cloud is forwarded to a mapping module. Furthermore, the object surface corners and the type of the surface is broadcasted. Four experiments demonstrate the usability of the 3D-Reflection-Pre-Filter. The first experiment was made in a empty room containing a mirror, the second experiment was made in a stairway containing a glass door, the third experiment was made in a empty room containing two mirrors, the fourth experiment was made in an office room containing a mirror. This paper demonstrate that for single scans the detection of specular reflective and transparent objects in 3D is possible. It is more reliable in 3D as in 2D. Nevertheless, collect the data of multiple scans and post-filter them as soon as the object was bypassed should pursued. This is why future work concentrates on implementing a post-filter module. Besides, it is the aim to improve the discrimination between specular reflective and transparent objects.