Integration of Biologically Inspired Pixel Saliency Estimation and IPDA Filters for Multi-target Tracking

Daniel Griffiths, Laleh Badriasl, Tony Scoleri, Russell S.A. Brinkworth, Sanjeev Arulampalam, Anthony Finn

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionpeer-review


The ability to visually locate and maintain targets is fundamental to modern autonomous systems. By augmenting a novel biologically-inspired target saliency estimator with Integrated Probability Data Association (IPDA) filters and linear prediction techniques, this paper demonstrates the reliable detection and tracking of small and weak-signature targets in cluttered environments. The saliency estimator performs an adaptive, spatio-temporal tone mapping and directional filtering that enhances local contrast and extracts consistent motion, strengthened by the IPDA mechanism which incrementally confirms targets and further removes stochastic false alarms. This joint technique was applied to mid-wave infra-red imagery of maritime scenes where heavy sea clutter distracts significantly from true vessels. Once initialised, the proposed method is shown to successfully maintain tracks of dim targets as small as 2×1 pixels with 100% accuracy and zero false positives. On average, this method scored a sensitivity of 93.2%, with 100% precision, which surpasses well-established techniques in the literature. These results are very encouraging, especially for applications that require no misses in highly cluttered environments.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationPattern Recognition - 5th Asian Conference, ACPR 2019, Revised Selected Papers
EditorsShivakumara Palaiahnakote, Gabriella Sanniti di Baja, Liang Wang, Wei Qi Yan
Place of PublicationSwitzerland
Number of pages15
ISBN (Electronic)9783030414047
ISBN (Print)9783030414030
Publication statusPublished - 2020
Externally publishedYes
Event5th Asian Conference on Pattern Recognition, ACPR 2019 - Auckland, New Zealand
Duration: 26 Nov 201929 Nov 2019

Publication series

NameLecture Notes in Computer Science (including subseries Lecture Notes in Artificial Intelligence and Lecture Notes in Bioinformatics)
Volume12046 LNCS
ISSN (Print)0302-9743
ISSN (Electronic)1611-3349


Conference5th Asian Conference on Pattern Recognition, ACPR 2019
CountryNew Zealand


  • Infra-red
  • Small target detection
  • Target tracking
  • Tone mapping
  • Visual saliency
  • Weak signature

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