A NOVEL IMAGE REGISTRATION ALGORITHM FOR SAR AND OPTICAL IMAGES BASED ON VIRTUAL POINTS
Optical image is rich in spectral information, while SAR instrument can work in both day and night and obtain images through fog and clouds. Combination of these two types of complementary images shows the great advantages of better image interpretation. Image registration is an inevitable and critical problem for the applications of multi-source remote sensing images, such as image fusion, pattern recognition and change detection. However, the different characteristics between SAR and optical images, which are due to the difference in imaging mechanism and the speckle noises in SAR image, bring great challenges to the multi-source image registration. Therefore, a novel image registration algorithm based on the virtual points, derived from the corresponding region features, is proposed in this paper. Firstly, image classification methods are adopted to extract closed regions from SAR and optical images respectively. Secondly, corresponding region features are matched by constructing cost function with rotate invariant region descriptors such as area, perimeter, and the length of major and minor axes. Thirdly, virtual points derived from corresponding region features, such as the centroids, endpoints and cross points of major and minor axes, are used to calculate initial registration parameters. Finally, the parameters are corrected by an iterative calculation, which will be terminated when the overlap of corresponding region features reaches its maximum. In the experiment, WordView-2 and Radasat-2 with 0.5 m and 4.7 m spatial resolution respectively, obtained in August 2010 in Suzhou, are used to test the registration method. It is shown that the multi-source image registration algorithm presented above is effective, and the accuracy of registration is up to pixel level.