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Method for fusing overhead imagery with automatic vessel reporting systems

Systems and methods for processing satellite imagery include a satellite, a processor, a database of vessel position data and a computer readable storage medium. The methods process satellite imagery by fusing the imagery with information from the database to automatically identify ships. The methods include the steps of defining an Area of Interest (AOI) and Time of Interest (TOI) for the image and enlarging the AOI according to a time window that brackets the TOI and an assumed vessel maximum speed. Vessel position data from the database for all vessels within the enlarged AOI and the time window is accessed, and fused to imagery position data using Chi-Squared probability analysis. If the analysis meets predetermined probability threshold criteria, the vessel position is assigned to the satellite image to identify the vessel. Otherwise, the operator is alerted that imaged vessels do not correlate to vessel reporting data, or vice versa.

Matthew A. Waller, Jerry Fu, Stephen R. Hobbs, Heidi L. Buck, Erin Joslin

Patent Number: 
Patent Issue Date: 
May 2, 2013
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