Computational Visual Media

, Volume 4, Issue 1, pp 83–102 | Cite as

Photometric stereo for strong specular highlights

  • Maryam Khanian
  • Ali Sharifi Boroujerdi
  • Michael Breuß
Open Access
Research Article


Photometric stereo is a fundamental technique in computer vision known to produce 3D shape with high accuracy. It uses several input images of a static scene taken from one and the same camera position but under varying illumination. The vast majority of studies in this 3D reconstruction method assume orthographic projection for the camera model. In addition, they mainly use the Lambertian reflectance model as the way that light scatters at surfaces. Thus, providing reliable photometric stereo results from real world objects still remains a challenging task. We address 3D reconstruction by use of a more realistic set of assumptions, combining for the first time the complete Blinn–Phong reflectance model and perspective projection. Furthermore, we compare two different methods of incorporating the perspective projection into our model. Experiments are performed on both synthetic and real world images; the latter do not benefit from laboratory conditions. The results show the high potential of our method even for complex real world applications such as medical endoscopy images which may include many specular highlights.


photometric stereo (PS) complete Blinn–Phong model perspective projection diffuse reflection specular reflection 



This work was supported by the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft under grant number BR2245/4–1. The authors would like to thank the anonymous reviewers for helpful comments to improve the quality of the paper.


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Authors and Affiliations

  • Maryam Khanian
    • 1
  • Ali Sharifi Boroujerdi
    • 1
  • Michael Breuß
    • 1
  1. 1.Chair of Applied MathematicsBrandenburg University of TechnologyCottbusGermany

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