Multimedia Tools and Applications

, Volume 78, Issue 22, pp 32137–32158 | Cite as

Nighttime visual refinement techniques for surveillance video: a review

  • Soumya TEmail author
  • Sabu M. Thampi


Video surveillance systems substitute manual efforts in various safety critic domains such as border area, assisted living, banking, service stations, and transportation. The multimedia-based surveillance system has a significant role in security and forensic systems because people tend to be easily convinced after observing voice, image, and video. Hence, these videos are strong evidence in the forensic investigation. However, most of the criminal activities such as ATM robbery and assassination are occur at nighttime because of the crime supporting dark environment. Many of the night surveillance systems in military, as well as commercial applications, are equipped with infrared and thermal based night vision systems. Its poor capability of texture and color interpretations are the major issues to ensure secure nighttime video monitoring. Specifically, visual refinements of nighttime surroundings and foreground objects provide a valuable assistance in the nighttime security system. In this scenario, it is highly recommended a review of the state-of-the-art nighttime visual refinement approaches. We conducted an extensive literature review and classified the nighttime visual refinement approaches into nighttime restoration and enhancement. This comparative literary analysis identified the research gap fields to explore future research directions in nighttime visual enhancement techniques. Finally, we discussed various open issues and future directions in the context enhancement based nighttime enhancement research.


Video surveillance Night video enhancement Night video restoration Context enhancement 



The authors would like to thank University of Kerala, LBS Centre for Science and Technology, College of Engineering Trivandrum, College of Engineering Perumon and Centre for Engineering Research and Development for providing research facilities.


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© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of Kerala, College of Engineering PerumonKeralaIndia
  2. 2.Indian Institute of Information Technology and ManagementKeralaIndia

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