2D visual tracking for sports UAV cinematography applications

Nikos Nikolaidis, Ioannis Mademlis, Orestis Zachariadis, Vasileios Mygdalis, Ioannis Pitas

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference Contribution (Conference Proceeding)

6 Citations (Scopus)
358 Downloads (Pure)


In this paper, we provide a preliminary study of basic requirements for autonomous UAV cinematography via 2D target tracking. Our contribution is two-fold. First, we develop a mathematical framework so as to determine hardware camera requirements (specifically, focal length), on a representative case study, i.e., orbiting a still or moving target. Second, we examine the on-board software requirements in order to successfully achieve autonomous target following. To this end, we evaluate the performance of state-of-the-art realtime 2D visual trackers in videos captured by commercial drones. Overall, it was found that state-of-the-art 2D visual trackers are dependable and fast enough to be used in drone cinematography, particularly when combined with periodic target re-detection. A proposed variant of the Staple tracker achieved the best balance between real-time performance and tracking accuracy, on a dataset composed of 31 sports videos recorded by commercial drones.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publication2017 IEEE Global Conference on Signal and Information Processing (GlobalSIP2017)
Subtitle of host publicationProceedings of a meeting held 14-16 November 2017, Montreal, Quebec, Canada
PublisherInstitute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE)
Number of pages5
ISBN (Electronic)9781509059904
ISBN (Print)9781509059911
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2018
Event5th IEEE Global Conference on Signal and Information Processing, GlobalSIP 2017 - Montreal, Canada
Duration: 14 Nov 201716 Nov 2017


Conference5th IEEE Global Conference on Signal and Information Processing, GlobalSIP 2017


  • target following
  • target tracking
  • UAV cinematography
  • UAV shot types
  • video tracking


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