ReS2tAC - UAV-borne real-time SGM stereo optimized for embedded ARM and CUDA devices
With the emergence of low-cost robotic systems, such as unmanned aerial vehicle, the importance of embedded high-performance image processing has increased. For a long time, FPGAs were the only processing hardware that were capable of high-performance computing, while at the same time preserving a low power consumption, essential for embedded systems. However, the recently increasing availability of embedded GPU-based systems, such as the NVIDIA Jetson series, comprised of an ARM CPU and a NVIDIA Tegra GPU, allows for massively parallel embedded computing on graphics hardware. With this in mind, we propose an approach for real-time embedded stereo processing on ARM and CUDA-enabled devices, which is based on the popular and widely used Semi-Global Matching algorithm. In this, we propose an optimization of the algorithm for embedded CUDA GPUs, by using massively parallel computing, as well as using the NEON intrinsics to optimize the algorithm for vectorized SIMD processing on embedded ARM CPUs. We have evaluated our approach with different configurations on two public stereo benchmark datasets to demonstrate that they can reach an error rate as low as 3.3%. Furthermore, our experiments show that the fastest configuration of our approach reaches up to 46 FPS on VGA image resolution. Finally, in a use-case specific qualitative evaluation, we have evaluated the power consumption of our approach and deployed it on the DJI Manifold 2-G attached to a DJI Matrix 210v2 RTK unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV), demonstrating its suitability for real-time stereo processing onboard a UAV.