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Frustum PointNets for 3D Object Detection from RGB-D Data

Created by Charles R. Qi, Wei Liu, Chenxia Wu, Hao Su and Leonidas J. Guibas from Stanford University and Nuro Inc.



This repository is code release for our CVPR 2018 paper (arXiv report here). In this work, we study 3D object detection from RGB-D data. We propose a novel detection pipeline that combines both mature 2D object detectors and the state-of-the-art 3D deep learning techniques. In our pipeline, we firstly build object proposals with a 2D detector running on RGB images, where each 2D bounding box defines a 3D frustum region. Then based on 3D point clouds in those frustum regions, we achieve 3D instance segmentation and amodal 3D bounding box estimation, using PointNet/PointNet++ networks (see references at bottom).

By leveraging 2D object detectors, we greatly reduce 3D search space for object localization. The high resolution and rich texture information in images also enable high recalls for smaller objects like pedestrians or cyclists that are harder to localize by point clouds only. By adopting PointNet architectures, we are able to directly work on 3D point clouds, without the necessity to voxelize them to grids or to project them to image planes. Since we directly work on point clouds, we are able to fully respect and exploit the 3D geometry -- one example is the series of coordinate normalizations we apply, which help canocalizes the learning problem. Evaluated on KITTI and SUNRGBD benchmarks, our system significantly outperforms previous state of the art and is still in leading positions on current KITTI leaderboard.

For more details of our architecture, please refer to our paper or project website.


If you find our work useful in your research, please consider citing:

      title={Frustum PointNets for 3D Object Detection from RGB-D Data},
      author={Qi, Charles R and Liu, Wei and Wu, Chenxia and Su, Hao and Guibas, Leonidas J},
      journal={arXiv preprint arXiv:1711.08488},


Install TensorFlow.There are also some dependencies for a few Python libraries for data processing and visualizations like cv2, mayavi etc. It's highly recommended that you have access to GPUs.

To use the Frustum PointNets v2 model, we need access to a few custom Tensorflow operators from PointNet++. The TF operators are included under models/tf_ops, you need to compile them (check under each ops subfolder) first. Update nvcc and python path if necessary. The compile script is written for TF1.4. There is also an option for TF1.2 in the script. If you are using earlier version it's possible that you need to remove the -D_GLIBCXX_USE_CXX11_ABI=0 flag in g++ command in order to compile correctly.

If we want to evaluate 3D object detection AP (average precision), we need also to compile the evaluation code (by running under train/kitti_eval). Check train/kitti_eval/ for details.

Some of the demos require mayavi library. We have provided a convenient script to install mayavi package in Python, a handy package for 3D point cloud visualization. You can check it at mayavi/ If the installation succeeds, you should be able to run mayavi/ as a simple demo. Note: the library works for local machines and seems do not support remote access with ssh or ssh -X.

The code is tested under TF1.2 and TF1.4 (GPU version) and Python 2.7 (version 3 should also work) on Ubuntu 14.04 and Ubuntu 16.04 with NVIDIA GTX 1080 GPU. It is highly recommended to have GPUs on your machine and it is required to have at least 8GB available CPU memory.


Currently, we support training and testing of the Frustum PointNets models as well as evaluating 3D object detection results based on precomputed 2D detector outputs (under kitti/rgb_detections). You are welcomed to extend the code base to support your own 2D detectors or feed your own data for network training.

Prepare Training Data

In this step we convert original KITTI data to organized formats for training our Frustum PointNets. NEW: You can also directly download the prepared data files HERE (960MB) -- to support training and evaluation, just unzip the file and move the *.pickle files to the kitti folder.

Firstly, you need to download the KITTI 3D object detection dataset, including left color images, Velodyne point clouds, camera calibration matrices, and training labels. Make sure the KITTI data is organized as required in dataset/ You can run python kitti/ to see whether data is downloaded and stored properly. If everything is fine, you should see image and 3D point cloud visualizations of the data.

Then to prepare the data, simply run: (warning: this step will generate around 4.7GB data as pickle files)

sh scripts/

Basically, during this process, we are extracting frustum point clouds along with ground truth labels from the original KITTI data, based on both ground truth 2D bounding boxes and boxes from a 2D object detector. We will do the extraction for the train (kitti/image_sets/train.txt) and validation set (kitti/image_sets/val.txt) using ground truth 2D boxes, and also extract data from validation set with predicted 2D boxes (kitti/rgb_detections/rgb_detection_val.txt).

You can check kitti/ for more details, and run python kitti/ --demo to visualize the steps in data preparation.

After the command executes, you should see three newly generated data files under the kitti folder. You can run python train/ to visualize the training data (frustum point clouds and 3D bounding box labels, in rect camera coordinate).

Training Frustum PointNets

To start training (on GPU 0) the Frustum PointNets model, just run the following script:


You can run scripts/ to trian the v2 model as well. The training statiscs and checkpoints will be stored at train/log_v1 (or train/log_v2 if it is a v2 model). Run python train/ -h to see more options of training.

NEW: We have also prepared some pretrained snapshots for both the v1 and v2 models. You can find them HERE (40MB) -- to support evaluation script, you just need to unzip the file and move the log_* folders to the train folder.


To evaluate a trained model (assuming you already finished the previous training step) on the validation set, just run:


Similarly, you can run scripts/ to evaluate a trained v2 model. The script will automatically evaluate the Frustum PointNets on the validation set based on precomputed 2D bounding boxes from a 2D detector (not released here), and then run the KITTI offline evaluation scripts to compute precision recall and calcuate average precisions for 2D detection, bird's eye view detection and 3D detection.

Currently there is no script for evaluation on test set, yet it is possible to do it by yourself. To evaluate on the test set, you need to get outputs from a 2D detector on KITTI test set, store it as something in kitti/rgb_detections. Then, you need to prepare test set frustum point clouds for the test set, by modifying the code in kitti/ Then you can modify test scripts in scripts by changing the data path, idx path and output file name. For our test set results reported, we used the entire trainval set for training.


Our code is released under the Apache 2.0 license (see LICENSE file for details).



  • Add a demo script to run inference of Frustum PointNets based on raw input data.
  • Add related scripts for SUNRGBD dataset