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Target Detection and Segmentation in Circular-Scan Synthetic-Aperture-Sonar Images using Semi-Supervised Convolutional Encoder-Decoders

2021-01-10 18:58:45
Isaac J. Sledge, Matthew S. Emigh, Jonathan L. King, Denton L. Woods, J. Tory Cobb, Jose C. Principe


tract: We propose a saliency-based, multi-target detection and segmentation framework for multi-aspect, semi-coherent imagery formed from circular-scan, synthetic-aperture sonar (CSAS). Our framework relies on a multi-branch, convolutional encoder-decoder network (MB-CEDN). The encoder portion extracts features from one or more CSAS images of the targets. These features are then split off and fed into multiple decoders that perform pixel-level classification on the extracted features to roughly mask the target in an unsupervised-trained manner and detect foreground and background pixels in a supervised-trained manner. Each of these target-detection estimates provide different perspectives as to what constitute a target. These opinions are cascaded into a deep-parsing network to model contextual and spatial constraints that help isolate targets better than either solution estimate alone. We evaluate our framework using real-world CSAS data with five broad target classes. Since we are the first to consider both CSAS target detection and segmentation, we adapt existing image and video-processing network topologies from the literature for comparative purposes. We show that our framework outperforms supervised deep networks. It greatly outperforms state-of-the-art unsupervised approaches for diverse target and seafloor types.

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