Multisource Region Attention Network for Fine-Grained Object Recognition in Remote Sensing Imagery

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Sumbul G., Cinbiş R. G., Aksoy S.

IEEE TRANSACTIONS ON GEOSCIENCE AND REMOTE SENSING, vol.57, pp.4929-4937, 2019 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 57
  • Publication Date: 2019
  • Doi Number: 10.1109/tgrs.2019.2894425
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus
  • Page Numbers: pp.4929-4937
  • Keywords: Deep learning, fine-grained classification, image alignment, multisource classification, object recognition, TREE SPECIES CLASSIFICATION, LIDAR DATA, FUSION, REGISTRATION, MULTISENSOR
  • Middle East Technical University Affiliated: Yes


Fine-grained object recognition concerns the identification of the type of an object among a large number of closely related subcategories. Multisource data analysis that aims to leverage the complementary spectral, spatial, and structural information embedded in different sources is a promising direction toward solving the fine-grained recognition problem that involves low between-class variance, small training set sizes for rare classes, and class imbalance. However, the common assumption of coregistered sources may not hold at the pixel level for small objects of interest. We present a novel methodology that aims to simultaneously learn the alignment of multisource data and the classification model in a unified framework. The proposed method involves a multisource region attention network that computes per-source feature representations, assigns attention scores to candidate regions sampled around the expected object locations by using these representations, and classifies the objects by using an attention-driven multisource representation that combines the feature representations and the attention scores from all sources. All components of the model are realized using deep neural networks and are learned in an end-to-end fashion. Experiments using RGB, multispectral, and LiDAR elevation data for classification of street trees showed that our approach achieved 64.2% and 47.3% accuracies for the 18-class and 40-class settings, respectively, which correspond to 13% and 14.3% improvement relative to the commonly used feature concatenation approach from multiple sources.