Mapping Electric Transmission Line Infrastructure from Aerial Imagery with Deep Learning

Wei Hu, Ben Alexander, Wendell Cathcart, Atsushi Hu, Varun Nair, Lin Zuo, Jordan Malof, Leslie Collins, Kyle Bradbury

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionpeer-review

Abstract

Access to electricity positively correlates with many beneficial socioeconomic outcomes in the developing world including improvements in education, health, and poverty. Efficient planning for electricity access requires information on the location of existing electric transmission and distribution infrastructure; however, the data on existing infrastructure is often unavailable or expensive. We propose a deep learning based method to automatically detect electric transmission infrastructure from aerial imagery and quantify those results with traditional object detection performance metrics. In addition, we explore two challenges to applying these techniques at scale: (1) how models trained on particular geographies generalize to other locations and (2) how the spatial resolution of imagery impacts infrastructure detection accuracy. Our approach results in object detection performance with an F1 score of 0.53 (0.47 precision and 0.60 recall). Using training data that includes more diverse geographies improves performance across the 4 geographies that we examined. Image resolution significantly impacts object detection performance and decreases precipitously as the image resolution decreases.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publication2020 IEEE International Geoscience and Remote Sensing Symposium, IGARSS 2020 - Proceedings
PublisherInstitute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers Inc.
Pages2229-2232
Number of pages4
ISBN (Electronic)9781728163741
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 26 2020
Event2020 IEEE International Geoscience and Remote Sensing Symposium, IGARSS 2020 - Virtual, Waikoloa, United States
Duration: Sep 26 2020Oct 2 2020

Publication series

NameInternational Geoscience and Remote Sensing Symposium (IGARSS)

Conference

Conference2020 IEEE International Geoscience and Remote Sensing Symposium, IGARSS 2020
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CityVirtual, Waikoloa
Period09/26/2010/2/20

Keywords

  • Electricity infrastructure
  • aerial image
  • computer vision
  • object detection
  • power transmission and distribution

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