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Video timing system for racing cars... is this possible?

asked 2012-09-10 11:57:20 -0600

Gustavo gravatar image


I was wondering if it is possible to make a timing system for racing cars using opencv. As I don´t have any idea of opencv, I post this questions for experienced people.

The problem: - Car speed 100 to 150Km/h

The idea is to put 1 camera on finish lane, track the car and read the car number (or may be a custom graphic code easier to recognize). Then stamp a time to calculate the lap time.

The big question is: how fast can an application with opencv do that?

Thank you!

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Detecting cars won't be much of a problem. Identifying each of them is a challenging task.

But keep in mind that for a real-life project, a requirement is a scientific or proffessional camera - high framerate, no motion blur, no rolling shutter. They are a bit hard to procure for a DIY project, and a bit expensive.

If all you want to do is to learn OpenCV or complete a school assignment, you can easily use a simple camera, even a good smartphone will be able to record some test videos for you.

sammy gravatar imagesammy ( 2012-09-10 13:26:55 -0600 )edit

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answered 2012-09-10 12:59:03 -0600

yes123 gravatar image

updated 2012-09-10 13:00:19 -0600

Detect a marker in a frame is the most simple thing opencv can do...
Maybe the only problem is the motion blur that each frame can have but that I believe depends only on camera quality.

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Ok thanks for your answer. Now, supose that I use a 60fps camera. That give me 16.6 mS to process each frame. That´s very fast! If I use a 30fps camera, I have 33.3mS... Would be that time enough to detect the car?

Gustavo gravatar imageGustavo ( 2012-09-10 13:24:35 -0600 )edit

@Gustavo: you don't need to process each frame (it will take for sure more than 16ms for each frame)... Also what happens if the marker is occluded by another car? I think this system isn't the best idea in this case.

yes123 gravatar imageyes123 ( 2012-09-10 14:10:57 -0600 )edit

Well, I post the question as a first approach to the problem. It is truth what you said. In the finish lane you could have 3 cars. I could put the camera at a 10mts tower and have a better view of the track.

But for the first shoot I´ll be happy to detect just one car. Then we will see...

Thank you!

Gustavo gravatar imageGustavo ( 2012-09-10 15:02:05 -0600 )edit

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Asked: 2012-09-10 11:57:20 -0600

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Last updated: Sep 10 '12