Facial recognition has attracted more and more attention since the rapid growth of artificial intelligence (AI) techniques in recent years. However, most of the related works about facial reconstruction and recognition are mainly based on big data collection and image deep learning related algorithms. The data driven based AI approaches inevitably increase the computational complexity of CPU and usually highly count on GPU capacity. One of the typical issues of RGB-based facial recognition is its applicability in low light or dark environments. To solve this problem, this paper presents an effective procedure for facial reconstruction as well as facial recognition via using a depth sensor. For each testing candidate, the depth camera acquires a multi-view of its 3D point clouds. The point cloud sets are stitched for 3D model reconstruction by using the iterative closest point (ICP). Then, a segmentation procedure is designed to separate the model set into a body part and head part. Based on the segmented 3D face point clouds, certain facial features are then extracted for recognition scoring. Taking a single shot from the depth sensor, the point cloud data is going to register with other 3D face models to determine which is the best candidate the data belongs to. By using the proposed feature-based 3D facial similarity score algorithm, which composes of normal, curvature, and registration similarities between different point clouds, the person can be labeled correctly even in a dark environment. The proposed method is suitable for smart devices such as smart phones and smart pads with tiny depth camera equipped. Experiments with real-world data show that the proposed method is able to reconstruct denser models and achieve point cloud-based 3D face recognition.
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