Hyperspectral imagery has the capability of capturing spectral features of interest that can be used to differentiate among similar materials. While hyperspectral imaging has been demonstrated to provide data that enable classification of relatively broad categories, there remain open questions as to how fine of discrimination is possible. An application of this fine discrimination question is the potential that spectral features exist in the surface reflectance of ordinary civilian vehicles that would enable tracking of a particular vehicle across repeated hyperspectral images in a cluttered urban area. To begin to explore this question a vehicle tracking experiment was conducted in the summer of 2005 on the Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT) campus in Rochester, New York. Several volunteer vehicles were moved around campus at specific times coordinated with over flights of RIT’s airborne Modular Imaging Spectrometer Instrument (MISI). MISI collected sequential images of the campus in 70 spectral channels from 0.4 to 1.0 microns with a ground resolution of approximately 2.5 meters. Ground truth spectra and photographs were collected for the vehicles. These data are being analyzed to determine the ability to uniquely associate a vehicle in one image with its location in a subsequent image. Initial results have demonstrated that the spectral measurement of a specific vehicle can be used to find the same vehicle in a subsequent image, although this is not always possible and is very dependent upon the specifics of the situation. Additionally, efforts are presented that explore predicted performance for variations in scene and sensor parameters through an analytical performance prediction model.

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Copyright 2006 Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers. One print or electronic copy may be made for personal use only. Systematic reproduction and distribution, duplication of any material in this paper for a fee or for commercial purposes, or modification of the content of the paper are prohibited.

Acknowledgment is made to the numerous additional RIT students and staff who contributed significantly to the experiment and data collection process. This material is based on research sponsored by AFRL/SNAT under agreement number FA8650-04-1-1717 (BAA 04- 03-SNK Amendment 3).

The U.S. Government is authorized to reproduce and distribute reprints for Governmental purposes notwithstanding any copyright notation thereon. The views and conclusions contained herein are those of the authors and should not be interpreted as necessarily representing the official policies or endorsements, either expressed or implied, of AFRL/SNAT or the U.S. Government.

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Document Type

Conference Paper

Department, Program, or Center

Chester F. Carlson Center for Imaging Science (COS)


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