# Centripetal Catmull–Rom spline

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In computer graphics, centripetal Catmull–Rom spline is a variant form of Catmull-Rom spline, originally formulated by Edwin Catmull and Raphael Rom, which can be evaluated using a recursive algorithm proposed by Barry and Goldman. It is a type of interpolating spline (a curve that goes through its control points) defined by four control points $\mathbf {P} _{0},\mathbf {P} _{1},\mathbf {P} _{2},\mathbf {P} _{3}$ , with the curve drawn only from $\mathbf {P} _{1}$ to $\mathbf {P} _{2}$ .

## Definition

Let $\mathbf {P} _{i}=[x_{i}\quad y_{i}]^{T}$ denote a point. For a curve segment $\mathbf {C}$ defined by points $\mathbf {P} _{0},\mathbf {P} _{1},\mathbf {P} _{2},\mathbf {P} _{3}$ and knot sequence $t_{0},t_{1},t_{2},t_{3}$ , the centripetal Catmull–Rom spline can be produced by:

$\mathbf {C} ={\frac {t_{2}-t}{t_{2}-t_{1}}}\mathbf {B} _{1}+{\frac {t-t_{1}}{t_{2}-t_{1}}}\mathbf {B} _{2}$ where

$\mathbf {B} _{1}={\frac {t_{2}-t}{t_{2}-t_{0}}}\mathbf {A} _{1}+{\frac {t-t_{0}}{t_{2}-t_{0}}}\mathbf {A} _{2}$ $\mathbf {B} _{2}={\frac {t_{3}-t}{t_{3}-t_{1}}}\mathbf {A} _{2}+{\frac {t-t_{1}}{t_{3}-t_{1}}}\mathbf {A} _{3}$ $\mathbf {A} _{1}={\frac {t_{1}-t}{t_{1}-t_{0}}}\mathbf {P} _{0}+{\frac {t-t_{0}}{t_{1}-t_{0}}}\mathbf {P} _{1}$ $\mathbf {A} _{2}={\frac {t_{2}-t}{t_{2}-t_{1}}}\mathbf {P} _{1}+{\frac {t-t_{1}}{t_{2}-t_{1}}}\mathbf {P} _{2}$ $\mathbf {A} _{3}={\frac {t_{3}-t}{t_{3}-t_{2}}}\mathbf {P} _{2}+{\frac {t-t_{2}}{t_{3}-t_{2}}}\mathbf {P} _{3}$ and

$t_{i+1}=\left[{\sqrt {(x_{i+1}-x_{i})^{2}+(y_{i+1}-y_{i})^{2}}}\right]^{\alpha }+t_{i}$ in which $\alpha$ ranges from 0 to 1 for knot parameterization, and $i=0,1,2,3$ with $t_{0}=0$ . For centripetal Catmull–Rom spline, the value of $\alpha$ is $0.5$ . When $\alpha =0$ , the resulting curve is the standard uniform Catmull–Rom spline; when $\alpha =1$ , the product is a chordal Catmull–Rom spline.

Plugging $t=t_{1}$ into the spline equations $\mathbf {A} _{1},\mathbf {A} _{2},\mathbf {A} _{3},\mathbf {B} _{1},\mathbf {B} _{2},$ and $\mathbf {C}$ shows that the value of the spline curve at $t_{1}$ is $\mathbf {C} =\mathbf {P} _{1}$ . Similarly, substituting $t=t_{2}$ into the spline equations shows that $\mathbf {C} =\mathbf {P} _{2}$ at $t_{2}$ . This is true independent of the value of $\alpha$ since the equation for $t_{i+1}$ is not needed to calculate the value of $\mathbf {C}$ at points $t_{1}$ and $t_{2}$ .

The extension to 3D points is simply achieved by considering $\mathbf {P} _{i}=[x_{i}\quad y_{i}\quad z_{i}]^{T}$ a generic 3D point $\mathbf {P} _{i}$ and

$t_{i+1}=\left[{\sqrt {(x_{i+1}-x_{i})^{2}+(y_{i+1}-y_{i})^{2}+(z_{i+1}-z_{i})^{2}}}\right]^{\alpha }+t_{i}$ ## Advantages

Centripetal Catmull–Rom spline has several desirable mathematical properties compared to the original and the other types of Catmull-Rom formulation. First, it will not form loop or self-intersection within a curve segment. Second, cusp will never occur within a curve segment. Third, it follows the control points more tightly.[vague] In this figure, there is a self-intersection/loop on the uniform Catmull-Rom spline (green), whereas for chordal Catmull-Rom spline (red), the curve does not follow tightly through the control points.

## Other uses

In computer vision, centripetal Catmull-Rom spline has been used to formulate an active model for segmentation. The method is termed active spline model. The model is devised on the basis of active shape model, but uses centripetal Catmull-Rom spline to join two successive points (active shape model uses simple straight line), so that the total number of points necessary to depict a shape is less. The use of centripetal Catmull-Rom spline makes the training of a shape model much simpler, and it enables a better way to edit a contour after segmentation.

## Code example in Python

The following is an implementation of the Catmull–Rom spline in Python that produces the plot shown beneath.

import numpy
import matplotlib.pyplot as plt

def CatmullRomSpline(P0, P1, P2, P3, nPoints=100):
"""
P0, P1, P2, and P3 should be (x,y) point pairs that define the Catmull-Rom spline.
nPoints is the number of points to include in this curve segment.
"""
# Convert the points to numpy so that we can do array multiplication
P0, P1, P2, P3 = map(numpy.array, [P0, P1, P2, P3])

# Parametric constant: 0.5 for the centripetal spline, 0.0 for the uniform spline, 1.0 for the chordal spline.
alpha = 0.5
# Premultiplied power constant for the following tj() function.
alpha = alpha/2
def tj(ti, Pi, Pj):
xi, yi = Pi
xj, yj = Pj
return ((xj-xi)**2 + (yj-yi)**2)**alpha + ti

# Calculate t0 to t4
t0 = 0
t1 = tj(t0, P0, P1)
t2 = tj(t1, P1, P2)
t3 = tj(t2, P2, P3)

# Only calculate points between P1 and P2
t = numpy.linspace(t1, t2, nPoints)

# Reshape so that we can multiply by the points P0 to P3
# and get a point for each value of t.
t = t.reshape(len(t), 1)
print(t)
A1 = (t1-t)/(t1-t0)*P0 + (t-t0)/(t1-t0)*P1
A2 = (t2-t)/(t2-t1)*P1 + (t-t1)/(t2-t1)*P2
A3 = (t3-t)/(t3-t2)*P2 + (t-t2)/(t3-t2)*P3
print(A1)
print(A2)
print(A3)
B1 = (t2-t)/(t2-t0)*A1 + (t-t0)/(t2-t0)*A2
B2 = (t3-t)/(t3-t1)*A2 + (t-t1)/(t3-t1)*A3

C = (t2-t)/(t2-t1)*B1 + (t-t1)/(t2-t1)*B2
return C

def CatmullRomChain(P):
"""
Calculate Catmull–Rom for a chain of points and return the combined curve.
"""
sz = len(P)

# The curve C will contain an array of (x, y) points.
C = []
for i in range(sz-3):
c = CatmullRomSpline(P[i], P[i+1], P[i+2], P[i+3])
C.extend(c)

return C

# Define a set of points for curve to go through
Points = [[0, 1.5], [2, 2], [3, 1], [4, 0.5], [5, 1], [6, 2], [7, 3]]

# Calculate the Catmull-Rom splines through the points
c = CatmullRomChain(Points)

# Convert the Catmull-Rom curve points into x and y arrays and plot
x, y = zip(*c)
plt.plot(x, y)

# Plot the control points
px, py = zip(*Points)
plt.plot(px, py, 'or')

plt.show()


## Code example in Unity C#

using UnityEngine;
using System.Collections;
using System.Collections.Generic;

public class Catmul : MonoBehaviour {

// Use the transforms of GameObjects in 3d space as your points or define array with desired points
public Transform[] points;

// Store points on the Catmull curve so we can visualize them
List<Vector2> newPoints = new List<Vector2>();

// How many points you want on the curve
uint numberOfPoints = 10;

// Parametric constant: 0.0 for the uniform spline, 0.5 for the centripetal spline, 1.0 for the chordal spline
public float alpha = 0.5f;

/////////////////////////////

void Update()
{
CatmulRom();
}

void CatmulRom()
{
newPoints.Clear();

Vector2 p0 = points.position; // Vector3 has an implicit conversion to Vector2
Vector2 p1 = points.position;
Vector2 p2 = points.position;
Vector2 p3 = points.position;

float t0 = 0.0f;
float t1 = GetT(t0, p0, p1);
float t2 = GetT(t1, p1, p2);
float t3 = GetT(t2, p2, p3);

for (float t=t1; t<t2; t+=((t2-t1)/(float)numberOfPoints))
{
Vector2 A1 = (t1-t)/(t1-t0)*p0 + (t-t0)/(t1-t0)*p1;
Vector2 A2 = (t2-t)/(t2-t1)*p1 + (t-t1)/(t2-t1)*p2;
Vector2 A3 = (t3-t)/(t3-t2)*p2 + (t-t2)/(t3-t2)*p3;

Vector2 B1 = (t2-t)/(t2-t0)*A1 + (t-t0)/(t2-t0)*A2;
Vector2 B2 = (t3-t)/(t3-t1)*A2 + (t-t1)/(t3-t1)*A3;

Vector2 C = (t2-t)/(t2-t1)*B1 + (t-t1)/(t2-t1)*B2;

newPoints.Add(C);
}
}

float GetT(float t, Vector2 p0, Vector2 p1)
{
float a = Mathf.Pow((p1.x-p0.x), 2.0f) + Mathf.Pow((p1.y-p0.y), 2.0f);
float b = Mathf.Pow(a, alpha * 0.5f);

return (b + t);
}

// Visualize the points
void OnDrawGizmos()
{
Gizmos.color = Color.red;
foreach (Vector2 temp in newPoints)
{
Vector3 pos = new Vector3(temp.x, temp.y, 0);
Gizmos.DrawSphere(pos, 0.3f);
}
}
}


For an implementation in 3D space, after converting Vector2 to Vector3 points, the first line of function GetT should be changed to this: Mathf.Pow((p1.x-p0.x), 2.0f) + Mathf.Pow((p1.y-p0.y), 2.0f) + Mathf.Pow((p1.z-p0.z), 2.0f);

## Code example in Unreal C++

float GetT( float t, float alpha, const FVector& p0, const FVector& p1 )
{
auto d  = p1 - p0;
float a = d | d; // Dot product
float b = FMath::Pow( a, alpha*.5f );
return (b + t);
}

FVector CatMullRom( const FVector& p0, const FVector& p1, const FVector& p2, const FVector& p3, float t /* between 0 and 1 */, float alpha=.5f /* between 0 and 1 */ )
{
float t0 = 0.0f;
float t1 = GetT( t0, alpha, p0, p1 );
float t2 = GetT( t1, alpha, p1, p2 );
float t3 = GetT( t2, alpha, p2, p3 );
t = FMath::Lerp( t1, t2, t );
FVector A1 = ( t1-t )/( t1-t0 )*p0 + ( t-t0 )/( t1-t0 )*p1;
FVector A2 = ( t2-t )/( t2-t1 )*p1 + ( t-t1 )/( t2-t1 )*p2;
FVector A3 = ( t3-t )/( t3-t2 )*p2 + ( t-t2 )/( t3-t2 )*p3;
FVector B1 = ( t2-t )/( t2-t0 )*A1 + ( t-t0 )/( t2-t0 )*A2;
FVector B2 = ( t3-t )/( t3-t1 )*A2 + ( t-t1 )/( t3-t1 )*A3;
FVector C  = ( t2-t )/( t2-t1 )*B1 + ( t-t1 )/( t2-t1 )*B2;
return C;
}