In this letter, we present a conditional generative adversarial network-based model for real-time underwater image enhancement. To supervise the adversarial training, we formulate an objective function that evaluates the perceptual image quality based on its global content, color, local texture, and style information. We also present EUVP, a large-scale dataset of a paired and an unpaired collection of underwater images (of 'poor' and 'good' quality) that are captured using seven different cameras over various visibility conditions during oceanic explorations and human-robot collaborative experiments. In addition, we perform several qualitative and quantitative evaluations which suggest that the proposed model can learn to enhance underwater image quality from both paired and unpaired training. More importantly, the enhanced images provide improved performances of standard models for underwater object detection, human pose estimation, and saliency prediction. These results validate that it is suitable for real-time preprocessing in the autonomy pipeline by visually-guided underwater robots. The model and associated training pipelines are available at https://github.com/xahidbuffon/funie-gan.
- Marine robotics
- computer vision for automation
- deep learning in robotics and automation