Optical flow techniques applied to video coding

Ravi Krishnamurthy, Pierre Moulin, John Woods

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


Motion estimation is an important part of most video coding schemes because it enables us to exploit the high degree of temporal redundancy present. Though block matching algorithms (BMA) yield coarse and piecewise-constant fields, they are very popular due to their simplicity and low bit overhead. In this paper, we propose to use a more advanced gradient-based technique to overcome the disadvantages of BMA. A dense motion field is estimated and compressed using a hierarchical finite element (HFE) representation, leading to an efficient, highly parallel, iterative, multiresolution optimization algorithm. The scheme also uses multiresolution measurements and a coarse-to-fine strategy to estimate large displacements. At comparable bit rates, the motion fields are much smoother and more natural than those produced by BMA. Coding gains of about 0.6 dB were obtained on Claire. More importantly, substantial visual improvements were obtained, mainly due to improved performance near the edges.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationIEEE International Conference on Image Processing
Editors Anon
Number of pages4
StatePublished - 1996
Externally publishedYes
EventProceedings of the 1995 IEEE International Conference on Image Processing. Part 3 (of 3) - Washington, DC, USA
Duration: Oct 23 1995Oct 26 1995


OtherProceedings of the 1995 IEEE International Conference on Image Processing. Part 3 (of 3)
CityWashington, DC, USA

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Hardware and Architecture
  • Computer Vision and Pattern Recognition
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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