STXD: Structural and Temporal Cross-Modal Distillation for Multi-View 3D Object Detection

Part of Advances in Neural Information Processing Systems 36 (NeurIPS 2023) Main Conference Track

Bibtex Paper Supplemental


Sujin Jang, Dae Ung Jo, Sung Ju Hwang, Dongwook Lee, Daehyun Ji


3D object detection (3DOD) from multi-view images is an economically appealing alternative to expensive LiDAR-based detectors, but also an extremely challenging task due to the absence of precise spatial cues. Recent studies have leveraged the teacher-student paradigm for cross-modal distillation, where a strong LiDAR-modality teacher transfers useful knowledge to a multi-view-based image-modality student. However, prior approaches have only focused on minimizing global distances between cross-modal features, which may lead to suboptimal knowledge distillation results. Based on these insights, we propose a novel structural and temporal cross-modal knowledge distillation (STXD) framework for multi-view 3DOD. First, STXD reduces redundancy of the feature components of the student by regularizing the cross-correlation of cross-modal features, while maximizing their similarities. Second, to effectively transfer temporal knowledge, STXD encodes temporal relations of features across a sequence of frames via similarity maps. Lastly, STXD also adopts a response distillation method to further enhance the quality of knowledge distillation at the output-level. Our extensive experiments demonstrate that STXD significantly improves the NDS and mAP of the based student detectors by 2.8%~4.5% on the nuScenes testing dataset.