Social distance monitoring framework using deep learning architecture to control infection transmission of COVID-19 pandemic

Imran Ahmed, Misbah Ahmad, Gwanggil Jeon

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

64 Citations (Scopus)


The recent outbreak of the COVID-19 affected millions of people worldwide, yet the rate of infected people is increasing. In order to cope with the global pandemic situation and prevent the spread of the virus, various unprecedented precaution measures are adopted by different countries. One of the crucial practices to prevent the spread of viral infection is social distancing. This paper intends to present a social distance framework based on deep learning architecture as a precautionary step that helps to maintain, monitor, manage, and reduce the physical interaction between individuals in a real-time top view environment. We used Faster-RCNN for human detection in the images. As the human's appearance significantly varies in a top perspective; therefore, the architecture is trained on the top view human data set. Moreover, taking advantage of transfer learning, a new trained layer is fused with a pre-trained architecture. After detection, the pair-wise distance between peoples is estimated in an image using Euclidean distance. The detected bounding box's information is utilized to measure the central point of an individual detected bounding box. A violation threshold is defined that uses distance to pixel information and determines whether two people violate social distance or not. Experiments are conducted using various test images; results demonstrate that the framework effectively monitors the social distance between peoples. The transfer learning technique enhances the overall performance of the framework by achieving an accuracy of 96% with a False Positive Rate of 0.6%.

Original languageEnglish
Article number102777
JournalSustainable Cities and Society
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2021
Externally publishedYes


  • COVID-19
  • Deep learning
  • Faster-RCNN
  • Internet of things
  • Person detection
  • Social distancing
  • Top view
  • Transfer learning


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