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Atom interferometers have a multitude of proposed applications in space including precise measurements of the Earth's gravitational field, in navigation & ranging, and in fundamental physics such as tests of the weak equivalence principle (WEP) and gravitational wave detection. While atom interferometers are realized routinely in ground-based laboratories, current efforts aim at the development of a space compatible design optimized with respect to dimensions, weight, power consumption, mechanical robustness and radiation hardness. In this paper, we present a design of a high-sensitivity differential dual species 85Rb/87Rb atom interferometer for space, including physics package, laser system, electronics and software. The physics package comprises the atom source consisting of dispensers and a 2D magneto-optical trap (MOT), the science chamber with a 3D-MOT, a magnetic trap based on an atom chip and an optical dipole trap (ODT) used for Bose-Einstein condensate (BEC) creation and interferometry, the detection unit, the vacuum system for 10-11 mbar ultra-high vacuum generation, and the high-suppression factor magnetic shielding as well as the thermal control system.
The laser system is based on a hybrid approach using fiber-based telecom components and high-power laser diode technology and includes all laser sources for 2D-MOT, 3D-MOT, ODT, interferometry and detection. Manipulation and switching of the laser beams is carried out on an optical bench using Zerodur bonding technology. The instrument consists of 9 units with an overall mass of 221 kg, an average power consumption of 608 W (819 W peak), and a volume of 470 liters which would well fit on a satellite to be launched with a Soyuz rocket, as system studies have shown.

Volterra and Wiener series
(2011)

Volterra and Wiener series are two classes of polynomial representations of nonlinear systems. They are perhaps the best understood and most widely used nonlinear system representations in signal processing and system identification. A Volterra or Wiener representation can be thought of as a natural extension of the classical linear system representation. In addition to the convolution of the input signal with the system's impulse response, the system representation includes a series of nonlinear terms that contain products of increasing order of the input signal with itself. It can be shown that these polynomial extension terms allow for representing a large class of nonlinear systems which basically encompasses all systems with scalar outputs that are time-invariant and have noninfinite memory.

Classification of point clouds by different types of geometric primitives is an essential part in the reconstruction process of CAD geometry. We use support vector machines (SVM) to label patches in point clouds with the class labels tori, ellipsoids, spheres, cones, cylinders or planes. For the classification features based on different geometric properties like point normals, angles, and principal curvatures are used. These geometric features are estimated in the local neighborhood of a point of the point cloud. Computing these geometric features for a random subset of the point cloud yields a feature distribution. Different features are combined for achieving best classification results. To minimize the time consuming training phase of SVMs, the geometric features are first evaluated using linear discriminant analysis (LDA).
LDA and SVM are machine learning approaches that require an initial training phase to allow for a subsequent automatic classification of a new data set. For the training phase point clouds are generated using a simulation of a laser scanning device. Additional noise based on an laser scanner error model is added to the point clouds. The resulting LDA and SVM classifiers are then used to classify geometric primitives in simulated and real laser scanned point clouds.
Compared to other approaches, where all known features are used for classification, we explicitly compare novel against known geometric features to prove their effectiveness.

Digital cameras are used in a large variety of scientific and industrial applications. For most applications the acquired data should represent the real light intensity per pixel as accurately as possible. However, digital cameras are subject to different sources of noise which distort the resulting image. Noise includes photon noise, fixed pattern noise and read noise. The aim of the radiometric calibration is to improve the quality of the resulting images by reducing the influence of the different types of noise on the measured data. In this paper, a new approach for the radiometric calibration of digital cameras using sparse Gaussian process regression is presented. Gaussian process regression is a kernel based supervised machine learning technique. It is used to learn the response of a camera system from a set of training images to allow for the calibration of new images. Compared to the standard Gaussian process method or flat field correction our sparse approach allows for faster calibration and higher reconstruction quality.

FishNet
(2016)

Digital cameras are subject to physical, electronic and optic effects that result in errors and noise in the image. These effects include for example a temperature dependent dark current, read noise, optical vignetting or different sensitivities of individual pixels. The task of a radiometric calibration is to reduce these errors in the image and thus improve the quality of the overall application. In this work we present an algorithm for radiometric calibration based on Gaussian processes. Gaussian processes are a regression method widely used in machine learning that is particularly useful in our context. Then Gaussian process regression is used to learn a temperature and exposure time dependent mapping from observed gray-scale values to true light intensities for each pixel. Regression models based on the characteristics of single pixels suffer from excessively high runtime and thus are unsuitable for many practical applications. In contrast, a single regression model for an entire image with high spatial resolution leads to a low quality radiometric calibration, which also limits its practical use. The proposed algorithm is predicated on a partitioning of the pixels such that each pixel partition can be represented by one single regression model without quality loss. Partitioning is done by extracting features from the characteristic of each pixel and using them for lexicographic sorting. Splitting the sorted data into partitions with equal size yields the final partitions, each of which is represented by the partition centers. An individual Gaussian process regression and model selection is done for each partition. Calibration is performed by interpolating the gray-scale value of each pixel with the regression model of the respective partition. The experimental comparison of the proposed approach to classical flat field calibration shows a consistently higher reconstruction quality for the same overall number of calibration frames.

The detection of differences between images of a printed reference and a reprinted wood decor often requires an initial image registration step. Depending on the digitalization method, the reprint will be displaced and rotated with respect to the reference. The aim of registration is to match the images as precisely as possible. In our approach, images are first matched globally by extracting feature points from both images and finding corresponding point pairs using the RANSAC algorithm. From these correspondences, we compute a global projective transformation between both images. In order to get a pixel-wise registration, we train a learning machine on the point correspondences found by RANSAC. The learning algorithm (in our case Gaussian process regression) is used to nonlinearly interpolate between the feature points which results in a high precision image registration method on wood decors.

Increasing robustness of handwriting recognition using character N-Gram decoding on large lexica
(2016)

Offline handwriting recognition systems often include a decoding step, that is retrieving the most likely character sequence from the underlying machine learning algorithm. Decoding is sensitive to ranges of weakly predicted characters, caused e.g. by obstructions in the scanned document. We present a new algorithm for robust decoding of handwriting recognizer outputs using character n-grams. Multidimensional hierarchical subsampling artificial neural networks with Long-Short-Term-Memory cells have been successfully applied to offline handwriting recognition. Output activations from such networks, trained with Connectionist Temporal Classification, can be decoded with several different algorithms in order to retrieve the most likely literal string that it represents. We present a new algorithm for decoding the network output while restricting the possible strings to a large lexicon. The index used for this work is an n-gram index with tri-grams used for experimental comparisons. N-grams are extracted from the network output using a backtracking algorithm and each n-gram assigned a mean probability. The decoding result is obtained by intersecting the n-gram hit lists while calculating the total probability for each matched lexicon entry. We conclude with an experimental comparison of different decoding algorithms on a large lexicon.