Automatic RoI Detection for Camera-based Pulse-rate Measurement

Remote photoplethysmography (rPPG) enables contactless measurement of pulse-rate by detecting pulse-induced colour changes on human skin using a regular camera. Most of existing rPPG methods exploit the subject face as the Region of Interest (RoI) for pulse-rate measurement by automatic face detection. However, face detection is a sub-optimal solution since (1) not all the subregions in a face contain the skin pixels where pulse-signal can be extracted, (2) it fails to locate the RoI in cases when the frontal face is invisible (e.g., side-view faces). In this paper, we present a novel automatic RoI detection method for camera-based pulse-rate measurement, which consists of three main steps: subregion tracking, feature extraction, and clustering of skin regions. To evaluate the robustness of the proposed method, 36 video recordings are made of 6 subjects with different skin-types performing 6 types of head motion. Experimental results show that for the video sequences containing subjects with brighter skin-types and modest body motions, the accuracy of the pulse-rates measured by our method (94%) is comparable to that obtained by a face detector (92%), while the average SNR is significantly improved from 5.8 dB to 8.6 dB.