Comparison of machine learning algorithms for detecting coral reef


  • Eduardo Tusa Universidad Técnica de Machala; Heriot-Watt University
  • Alan Reynolds Heriot-Watt University
  • Neil Robertson Heriot-Watt University
  • David Lane Heriot-Watt University
  • Hyxia Villegas Universidad de Carabobo; Universidad Técnica de Machala
  • Antonio Bosnjak Universidad de Carabobo



Coralbot, coral reef, machine learning, Gabor Wavelets filters, OpenCV


(Received: 2014/07/31 - Accepted: 2014/09/23)

This work focuses on developing a fast coral reef detector, which is used for an autonomous underwater vehicle, AUV. A fast detection secures the AUV stabilization respect to an area of reef as fast as possible, and prevents devastating collisions. We use the algorithm of Purser et al. (2009) because of its precision. This detector has two parts: feature extraction that uses Gabor Wavelet filters, and feature classification that uses machine learning based on Neural Networks. Due to the extensive time of the Neural Networks, we exchange for a classification algorithm based on Decision Trees. We use a database of 621 images of coral reef in Belize (110 images for training and 511 images for testing). We implement the bank of Gabor Wavelets filters using C++ and the OpenCV library. We compare the accuracy and running time of 9 machine learning algorithms, whose result was the selection of the Decision Trees algorithm. Our coral detector performs 70ms of running time in comparison to 22s executed by the algorithm of Purser et al. (2009).



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How to Cite

Tusa, E., Reynolds, A., Robertson, N., Lane, D., Villegas, H., & Bosnjak, A. (2014). Comparison of machine learning algorithms for detecting coral reef. Enfoque UTE, 5(3), pp. 45 - 56.