On Computing the Fréchet Distance Between Surfaces

Authors Amir Nayyeri, Hanzhong Xu

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Amir Nayyeri
Hanzhong Xu

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Amir Nayyeri and Hanzhong Xu. On Computing the Fréchet Distance Between Surfaces. In 32nd International Symposium on Computational Geometry (SoCG 2016). Leibniz International Proceedings in Informatics (LIPIcs), Volume 51, pp. 55:1-55:15, Schloss Dagstuhl – Leibniz-Zentrum für Informatik (2016)


We describe two (1+epsilon)-approximation algorithms for computing the Fréchet distance between two homeomorphic piecewise linear surfaces R and S of genus zero and total complexity n, with Frechet distance delta. (1) A 2^{O((n + ( (Area(R)+Area(S))/(epsilon.delta)^2 )^2 )} time algorithm if R and S are composed of fat triangles (triangles with angles larger than a constant). (2) An O(D/(epsilon.delta)^2) n + 2^{O(D^4/(epsilon^4.delta^2))} time algorithm if R and S are polyhedral terrains over [0,1]^2 with slope at most D. Although, the Fréchet distance between curves has been studied extensively, very little is known for surfaces. Our results are the first algorithms (both for surfaces and terrains) that are guaranteed to terminate in finite time. Our latter result, in particular, implies a linear time algorithm for terrains of constant maximum slope and constant Frechet distance.
  • Surfaces
  • Terrains
  • Frechet distance
  • Parametrized complexity
  • normal coordinates


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