“Synthetic aperture confocal imaging” by Levoy, Chen, Vaish, Horowitz, Bolas, et al. …

  • ©Marc Levoy, Billy Chen, Vaibhav Vaish, Mark Horowitz, Mark T. Bolas, and Ian E. McDowall




    Synthetic aperture confocal imaging



    Confocal microscopy is a family of imaging techniques that employ focused patterned illumination and synchronized imaging to create cross-sectional views of 3D biological specimens. In this paper, we adapt confocal imaging to large-scale scenes by replacing the optical apertures used in microscopy with arrays of real or virtual video projectors and cameras. Our prototype implementation uses a video projector, a camera, and an array of mirrors. Using this implementation, we explore confocal imaging of partially occluded environments, such as foliage, and weakly scattering environments, such as murky water. We demonstrate the ability to selectively image any plane in a partially occluded environment, and to see further through murky water than is otherwise possible. By thresholding the confocal images, we extract mattes that can be used to selectively illuminate any plane in the scene.


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