Mark J. Carlotto

Mark J. Carlotto
General Dynamics

Ph. D. Electrical Engineering

About

129
Publications
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1,155
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Introduction
Mark Carlotto is an aerospace engineer with over thirty years of experience in satellite imaging, remote sensing, signal and image processing, pattern recognition, and app development. He received a Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering from Carnegie-Mellon University in 1981 and has published over one hundred technical articles.

Publications

Publications (129)
Article
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In a previous study of over two hundred ancient sites, the alignments of almost half of the sites could not be explained. These sites are distributed throughout the world and include the majority of Mesoamerican pyramids and temples that are misaligned with respect to true north, megalithic structures at several sites in Peru’s Sacred Valley, some...
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A new method for estimating the ages of Egyptian pyramids using a data-driven approach is described. Measurements of eight pyramids (Meidum, Bent, Red, Khufu, Khafre, Menkaure, Sahure, and Neferirkare) reveal correlations that can be exploited and used to estimate the ages of older pyramids from more recent ones. Preliminary results using a linear...
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Snapshot/Lay Summary—In 1958 Charles Hapgood proposed that mass imbalances created by a buildup of polar ice could displace the earth’s crust over the mantle and that resulting pole shifts were the cause of catastrophic climate changes and ice ages. We contrast the first part of his theory with plate tectonics and true polar wander and propose a ne...
Preprint
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It has been proposed that certain ancient sites in Asia and Mesoamerica were aligned to the geomagnetic pole at the time of construction. Due to the motion of the geomagnetic pole over time, it is usually not possible to assign a single date to an archaeological site or a structure within a site based on its geomagnetic alignment alone. A new metho...
Preprint
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We examined more than three dozen earthen pyramids in central China believed to have been constructed as mausoleums and burial mounds of early emperors and their families. Analysis of their physical properties reveals a range of weak to strong correlations between location, age, alignment, and size (ground area). A strong correlation (R = 0.79) bet...
Preprint
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Ruins of ancient shrines, temples, forts, and settlements in and around the Taklamakan Desert are generally thought to have been established no later than the third century BCE. Some of the structures at these sites excavated by M. Aurel Stein in the early 20th century were built over more ancient foundations and so could be considerably older base...
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The geometries of two-dozen geoglyphs in Northern Kazakhstan are examined to determine their age and purpose. The geoglyphs include linear arrangements of earthen mounds, cross figures, squares, and other shapes. In an attempt to understand the orientation of the cross figures an interesting alignment has been discovered that may be related to sols...
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A video posted on YouTube in late March 2020 shows what appear to be three very large unidentified objects flying around the moon. The objects are estimated to be between 5 and 15 miles in length and roughly 1 to 3 miles in width, and appear to be moving in speeds in excess of 30 miles/sec. between 5 and 10 miles above the lunar surface.
Preprint
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A study of ancient sites in Mexico and Central America finds that most are not aligned in any obvious astronomical direction, e.g., to north, or solstices or lunar standstills. While others have demonstrated some success in relating the alignments of structures at Mesoamerican sites to the surrounding landscape, important calendar dates, and certai...
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There are hundreds, perhaps thousands, of sites of archaeological importance throughout the world. In this study, the alignments of more than two hundred ancient sites were measured and analyzed. Sites are organized into eight geographic regions: South America, Mesoamerica, North America, Europe, the Middle East, Africa, Asia, and the Pacific Ocean...
Preprint
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It is generally believed that the ancient Egyptians oriented their pyramids, temples, and other structures to the sun and stars. Yet the alignments of many sites are either unexplained or are not consistent with accepted historical timelines. Even if one knew nothing about the Egyptian civilization it can be readily determined that many sites are o...
Preprint
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A remote sensing study of an expanse of woodlands in the middle of Cape Ann, Massachusetts known as Dogtown is described. Using 35 years of Landsat TM data provided through Google's Earth Engine we compare and contrast vegetation changes at selected study areas in Dogtown. Successional forests, swamps, fens, and other areas are examined. Preliminar...
Preprint
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Evidence is presented suggesting the possible existence of a previous temple dedicated to Hathor at Dendera. Two astronomical alignments of the temple with Alkaid, a star in the constellation Ursa Minor, occur during the 26,000-year long precessional cycle. The more recent alignment is when the current temple was constructed around 50 BCE. An earli...
Preprint
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An analysis of over fifty Greek temple and other archaeological sites reveal that one-third (33%) are aligned to the cardinal directions, solstices, and lunar standstills. The others are largely unexplained in terms of current theories. We consider three alternative models that are able to account for the alignment of all but one of the other sites...
Preprint
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A new approach for dating archaeological sites is described. The method is inspired by Hapgood's hypothesis that patterns of glaciation and ice ages can be explained by shifts in the geographic location of the North Pole. We have identified over fifty archaeological sites throughout the world that could have once been aligned to north (i.e., to one...
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Algorithms are described for computing solar, lunar, and geographical alignment angles at any geo-location as a function of time. These angles include the directions of solstice and zenith passage sunrise and sunset, and major/minor lunar standstill moonrise and moonset, and the direction to another site or reference location (e.g., a geomagnetic p...
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In examining the alignments of megalithic sites in northern Europe it has been determined that more than a dozen appear to point toward a geographic location near or within modern-day Paris. The earliest sites (late Neolithic) that face in this direction are not aligned with celestial events such as solstices or lunar standstills. However, later si...
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Our analysis suggests that the Temple of the Three Windows might be one of the oldest structures at Machu Picchu, and that the Intihuatana, constructed sometime later could have functioned first as a solsticial marker and later as an equinoctial marker over most, if not, all of its long history.
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The authors present an analysis of Apollo 15 and Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter images of two unusual features in the crater Paracelsus C on the far side of the moon. At first glance these structures appear to be walls or towers on the lunar surface. By combining multiple images we show the larger feature, oriented in a northeast/southwest direction,...
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A collection of altered glacial erratics on Poles Hill in Gloucester Massachusetts that function as a solar observatory for viewing solstice events is shown to fit into a broader celestial context. The locations of these and a number of other erratics that also appear to have been altered are correlated with bright stars in several northern constel...
Conference Paper
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A unified model-based approach to ATR that uses 3D models to control detection, segmentation, and classification is described. Objects are modeled by rectangular boxes whose dimensions are Gaussian random variables. A fast predictor estimates the size and shape of expected objects in the image, which controls detection and segmentation algorithms....
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Evidence supporting the existence of a solar observatory on Sunset Hill, also known as Poles Hill or Pole Hill, in Gloucester Massachusetts, is presented. Sitting atop a kame overlooking two tidal rivers, the Annisquam and Mill River, the site was important to Native Americans. Archaeological data indicate they occupied nearby Riverview seasonally...
Conference Paper
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A method for fusing imagery from mobile devices with map data in real time is described. A camera model for iOS devices equipped with a camera, GPS, and compass is developed. The parameters of the camera model are determined from information supplied by the device’s on board sensors. The camera model projects photo and video data into the ground pl...
Conference Paper
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A fusion approach is described that combines texture features from high-resolution panchromatic imagery with land cover statistics derived from co-registered low-resolution global databases to obtain high-resolution land cover maps. The method does not require training data or any human intervention. We use an MxN Gabor filter bank consisting of M=...
Conference Paper
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We describe a real-time method for continuously determining the key of live music and detecting chords using a minimum description length (MDL) criterion. MDL is based on the idea that the model that provides the simplest explanation of the data is the " best " model. Pitch detection is performed in the time domain using a bank of gamma-tone filter...
Conference Paper
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A video data conditioner (VDC) for automated full-­motion video (FMV) detection, classification, and tracking is described. VDC extends our multi-­stage image data conditioner (IDC) to video. Key features include robust detection of compact objects in motion imagery, coarse classification of all detections, and tracking of fixed and moving object...
Conference Paper
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Motivated by biologically-inspired architectures for video analysis and object recognition, a new single band electro-optical (EO) object detector is described for aerial reconnaissance and surveillance applications. Our bio-inspired target screener (BiTS) uses a bank of Gabor filters to compute a vector of texture features over a range of scales a...
Conference Paper
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Locative Viewing is a method for visualizing geographically-referenced 3-D objects in the local coordinate system of a geographically-referenced observer. A computer-graphics rendering of nearby geo-objects is superimposed over the visual surroundings of the observer as seen by a camera. This rendering changes as the observer moves. Locative viewin...
Conference Paper
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The automatic detection and classification of manmade objects in overhead imagery is key to generating geospatial intelligence (GEOINT) from today's high space-time bandwidth sensors in a timely manner. A flexible multi-stage object detection and classification capability known as the IMINT Data Conditioner (IDC) has been developed that can exploit...
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The effect of errors in ground truth on the estimated thematic accuracy of a classifier is considered. A relationship is derived between the true accuracy of a classifier relative to ground truth without errors, the actual accuracy of the ground truth used, and the measured accuracy of the classifier as a function of the number of classes. We show...
Conference Paper
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An alternative to conventional techniques for compressing video data of moving objects is described. The method, known as track-based compression (TBC), detects, associates, and tracks moving objects between frames, sending only a small chip or ID around the moving object once the track has been established. The compression ratio achievable depends...
Conference Paper
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A method is described for predicting the long-term movement of people on the ground, either on foot or driving vehicles, as a function of the terrain, weather, behavior, and situation (context). It uses the results of statistical simulations to estimate location probability distributions of where a vehicle or person may go in a given amount of time...
Conference Paper
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Spatial data sharpening techniques that fuse images and maps are described. The statistical basis of these techniques are reviewed and extended for sharpening other kinds of spatial data that can be difficult to collect in denied areas. One example is demographic data. We demonstrate the ability to derive high-resolution population maps from county...
Conference Paper
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The ability to detect significant change in images is reduced when there is parallax. Fixed objects above or below the ground plane displace from their true position by an amount that depends on their height and the look angle of the sensor, reducing background cancellation and limiting the effectiveness of change detection. A method for reducing t...
Conference Paper
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A feature-based approach for detecting anomalies in spectral, spatial, temporal, and other domains is described. When the frequency of occurrence is small relative to the background, anomalies such as man-made objects in natural image backgrounds do not form their own clusters, but are instead assigned the nearest background cluster, becoming an ou...
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A statistical classification approach for detecting artificial patterns in satellite imagery such as those produced by a technological intelligence, and its application to the search for non-natural features of possible extraterrestrial origin on planetary surfaces is presented. Statistics of natural terrestrial backgrounds (fractal textures, drain...
Conference Paper
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Key to effective image exploitation is letting man and machine do what they each do best. Automated target recognition (ATR) systems rely on model-based approaches that operate in a highly structured predict-extract-match-search (PEMS) loop. Fundamental to wide area search (WAS) is the problem of detecting a large number of potential objects that a...
Conference Paper
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An information-theoretic method is described for automatically determining the best number of clusters. It is motivated by Rissanen's minimum description length principle that states the best representation is the one with the fewest bits. The method is evaluated using two different clustering algorithms: a mode finder based on scale-space algorith...
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A new unified approach to object and change detection is presented that involves clustering and analyzing the distribution of pixel values within clusters over one or more images. Cluster-based anomaly detection (CBAD) can detect man-made objects that are: (1) present in a single multiband image; (2) appear or disappear between two images acquired...
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Analysis of video from Space Shuttle mission STS-80 provides new insight into a number of unusual events captured by a camera aboard the space shuttle Columbia in 1996. Three different phenomena are analyzed: 1) two slow moving circular objects, 2) a number of fast moving objects in space near the shuttle, and 3) a strange luminous apparition near...
Conference Paper
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A system is described for predicting the location and movement of ground vehicles over road networks using a combination of vehicle motion models, context, and network flow analysis. Preliminary results obtained over simulated ground vehicle movement scenarios demonstrate the ability to accurately predict candidate TCT locations under move- stop-mo...
Conference Paper
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The Multi-source Report-level Simulator (MRS) is a tool developed by Veridian Systems as part of its Model-adaptive Multi-source Track Fusion (MMTF) effort under DARPA"s DTT program. MRS generates simulated multisensor contact reports for GMTI, HUMINT, IMINT, SIGINT, UGS, and video. It contains a spatial editor for creating ground tracks along whic...
Conference Paper
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Geospatial terrain statistics and object symmetries of enigmatic landforms in Cydonia are examined and correlations identified. Analysis of Viking image-derived MDIM data (1/256 deg./pixel) over Cydonia (37.5-42.5° N and 4.5-15.5° W) shows directional anisotropies in the spatial autocorrelation (variogram) at medium to long wavelengths (10-100 km.)...
Conference Paper
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A method for detecting buried mines in ground penetrating radar (GPR) data using a Hough transform approach is described. GPR is one of three sensors used in the Mine Hunter/Killer (MH/K) system for detecting buried mines. A buried mine modeled as a point scatterer in object space gives rise to a hyperbolic response in GPR measurement space. Our ap...
Conference Paper
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The automatic detection of significant changes in imagery is important in a number of intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance (ISR) tasks. An automated capability known as the Order of Battle Change Fusion (OBCF) system is described for detecting, fusing, and tracking changes over time in multi-sensor imagery. OBCF uses multiple change detec...
Conference Paper
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A nonlinear mean square estimation algorithm for cross-sensor image fusion and spectral anomaly detection is described. The algorithm can be used to enhance a low resolution image with a higher resolution coregistered multispectral image, and to detect anomalies between spectral bands (features in one spectral band that do not occur in other bands)...
Conference Paper
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Improving change detection performance (probability of detection/false alarm rate) is an important goal of DARPA's Dynamic Database (DDB) program. We describe a novel approach based on fusing the outputs from two complementary image-based change detection algorithms. Both use historical imagery over the region of interest to construct normalcy mode...
Article
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Image exploitation technology approaches have generally focused on the detection and spatial analysis of stationary groups of objects on the ground using various sensors. While spatial arrangement is clearly necessary in analyzing military formations, it is usually not sufficient. Typically the arrangement must be examined within some context in or...
Article
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Image exploitation technology approaches have generally focused on the detection and spatial analysis of stationary groups of objects on the ground using various sensors. While spatial arrangement is clearly necessary in analyzing military formations, it is usually not sufficient. Typically the arrangement must be examined within some context in or...
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The ability to accurately predict natural backgrounds over a wide range of potential image acquisition conditions is key to wide-area change detection. The lack of robustness in pure image-based techniques has led to the development of site modeling and model-supported exploitation approaches. Instead of using multiple images to build a site model,...
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A new method for enhancing the spatial resolution of low- resolution digital elevation models (DEMs) using a single higher-resolution multispectral image is described. The method uses a nonlinear estimation algorithm to determine an empirical relationship between the spectral response of a pixel and the gradient or slope of its underlying elevation...
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A new method for reducing the effects of space-varying, wavelength-dependent scattering in multispectral imagery caused by smoke and haze is described. It is intended for use in situations where atmospheric scattering affects the shorter wavelengths and varies in space. The method converts an image in which space-varying scattering is present into...
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A multispectral classifier based on an alternative spectral representation is described, and its performance over a full Landsat Thematic Mapper (TM) scene is evaluated. Spectral classes are represented by their spectral shape - a vector of binary features that describes the relative values between spectral bands. An algorithm for segmenting or clu...
Article
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A new approach to wide area surveillance is described that is based on the detection and analysis of changes across two or more images over time. Methods for modeling and detecting general patterns of change associated with construction and other kinds of activities that can be observed in remotely sensed imagery are presented. They include a new n...
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Findings from a series of independent investigations are summarized and presented as evidence in support of the hypothesis that certain features on the Martian surface are artificial in origin. The discussion focuses on the Cydonia region in Mars' northern hemisphere. The features under investigation include a formation approximately 2.5 by 2 km in...
Conference Paper
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A method for detecting man-made features in synthetic aperture radar (SAR) imagery is described. The method is based on matching the local histogram against a family of Weibull densities. The Weibull density is defined by two parameters, the median and the skewness (Weibull parameter). Regions containing man-made objects have Weibull parameter valu...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
A new method for reducing the effects of space-varying, wavelength-dependent scattering in multispectral imagery caused by smoke and haze is described. It is intended for use in situations where atmospheric scattering affects the shorter wavelengths and varies in space. The method converts an image in which space-varying scattering is present into...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
The accurate classification of remotely-sensed imagery usually requires some form of ground truth data. Maps are potentially a valuable source of ground truth but have several problems (e.g., they are usually out- dated, features are generalized, and thematic categories in the map often do not correspond to distinct clusters or segments in the imag...
Conference Paper
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A multispectral classification system based on an alternative spectral representation is described and its perfor mance over a full Landsat Thematic Mapper (TM) scene evaluated. Spectral classes are represented by their s pectral shape -a vector of binary features that describes the relative values between spectral bands. An algorit hm for segmenti...
Conference Paper
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An approach to image modeling based on nonlinear mean-square estimation that does not assume a functio nal form for the model is described. The relationship between input and output images is represented in the form of a lookup table that can be efficiently computed from, and applied to images. Three applications are presented to illustrate the uti...
Conference Paper
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Content-based retrieval techniques can be characterized in several ways: by the manner in which image data are indexed, by the level of specificity/generality of the query and response of the system, by the type of query (e.g., iconic or symbolic), and by the kind of information used (intrinsic image features or attached information such as text)....
Conference Paper
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A new method for extracting the variation in brightness due to topography (topographic component) from multispectral imagery is described. A lookup table relates multispectral brightness values within a training area to the topographic component computed from elevation data for a given reflectance model. The lookup table can then be used to determi...
Article
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Text is an important data source in many GIS applications. In some applications, text data are in a format (e.g. tables) that can be directly converted into database records or objects. Other kinds of data such as historical records, field reports, and intelligence messages are unformatted and thus more difficult to incorporate into a GIS. Instead...
Conference Paper
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A new mixture model based on a probabilistic formulation is described. The model is non-linear, and unlike previous mixture models, does not need to be inverted to compute mixtures from spectra. Instead, mixtures are estimated using an interpolation approach. There are no constraints between the number of bands and endmembers. The mixture model is...
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A new algorithm to assist in the analysis of data sets of very high dimensionality (from 10 to over 1000 dimensions) is described. The algorithm is based on a nonlinear mapping (NLM) algorithm developed by Sammon winch maps a configuration of points in one space to a configuration in another such that the distances between points in the two spaces...
Conference Paper
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Pattern recognition techniques for content-based image retrieval are addressed. Two of the methods are based on indexing images at the signal level (image feature indexing) and are able to find related images in a database that look similar. Next, a more general method is discussed which indexes images via attached textual descriptions (indexing by...
Conference Paper
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We describe an integrated system developed to update maps by extracting and identifying roads and other linear features in imagery. Our approach involves registering the map to be updated to the image on a local basis using an affine transformation to eliminate costly preprocessing. Image features are converted to the map coordinate system by inver...
Conference Paper
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