Photometric Stereo With Small Angular Variations

Jian Wang, Yasuyuki Matsushita, Boxin Shi, Aswin C. Sankaranarayanan; Proceedings of the IEEE International Conference on Computer Vision (ICCV), 2015, pp. 3478-3486


Most existing successful photometric stereo setups require large angular variations in illumination directions, which results in acquisition rigs that have large spatial extent. For many applications, especially involving mobile devices, it is important that the device be spatially compact. This naturally implies smaller angular variations in the illumination directions. This paper studies the effect of small angular variations in illumination directions to photometric stereo. We explore both theoretical justification and practical issues in the design of a compact and portable photometric stereo device on which a camera is surrounded by a ring of point light sources. We first derive the relationship between the estimation error of surface normal and the baseline of the point light sources. Armed with this theoretical insight, we develop a small baseline photometric stereo prototype to experimentally examine the theory and its practicality.

Related Material

author = {Wang, Jian and Matsushita, Yasuyuki and Shi, Boxin and Sankaranarayanan, Aswin C.},
title = {Photometric Stereo With Small Angular Variations},
booktitle = {Proceedings of the IEEE International Conference on Computer Vision (ICCV)},
month = {December},
year = {2015}