Identify Solar Panels in Low Resolution Satellite Imagery with Siamese Architecture and Cross-Correlation (Papers Track)

Zhengcheng Wang (Tsinghua University); Zhecheng Wang (Stanford University); Arun Majumdar (Stanford University); Ram Rajagopal (Stanford University)

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Understanding solar adoption trends and their underlying dynamics requires a comprehensive and granular time-series solar installation database which is unavailable today and expensive to create manually. To this end, we leverage a deep siamese network that automatically identifies solar panels in historical low-resolution (LR) satellite images by comparing the target image with its high-resolution exemplar at the same location. To resolve the potential displacement between solar panels in the exemplar image and that in the target image, we use a cross-correlation module to collate the spatial features learned from each input and measure their similarity. Experimental result shows that our model significantly outperforms baseline methods on a dataset of historical LR images collected in California.