Automatic license plate recognition research

A Robust Real-Time Automatic License Plate Recognition based on the YOLO Detector
Rayson Laroca,Evair Severo,Luiz A. Zanlorensi,Luiz S. Oliveira,Gabriel Resende Gon\u00e7alves,William Robson Schwartz,David Menotti

Submitted on 2/26/2018

Automatic License Plate Recognition (ALPR) has been a frequent topic of research due to many practical applications. However, many of the current solutions are still not robust in real-world situations, commonly depending on many constraints. This paper presents a robust and efficient ALPR system based on the state-of-the-art YOLO object detector. The Convolutional Neural Networks (CNNs) are trained and fine-tuned for each ALPR stage so that they are robust under different conditions (e.g., variations in camera, lighting, and background). Specially for character segmentation and recognition, we design a two-stage approach employing simple data augmentation tricks such as inverted License Plates (LPs) and flipped characters. The resulting ALPR approach achieved impressive results in two datasets. First, in the SSIG dataset, composed of 2,000 frames from 101 vehicle videos, our system achieved a recognition rate of 93.53% and 47 Frames Per Second (FPS), performing better than both Sighthound and OpenALPR commercial systems (89.80% and 93.03%, respectively) and considerably outperforming previous results (81.80%). Second, targeting a more realistic scenario, we introduce a larger public dataset, called UFPR-ALPR dataset, designed to ALPR. This dataset contains 150 videos and 4,500 frames captured when both camera and vehicles are moving and also contains different types of vehicles (cars, motorcycles, buses and trucks). In our proposed dataset, the trial versions of commercial systems achieved recognition rates below 70%. On the other hand, our system performed better, with recognition rate of 78.33% and 35 FPS.

A New De-blurring Technique for License Plate Images with Robust Length Estimation
P. S. Prashanth Rao,Rajesh Kumar Muthu

Submitted on 2/17/2018

Recognizing a license plate clearly while seeing a surveillance camera snapshot is often important in cases where the troublemaker vehicle(s) have to be identified. In many real world situations, these images are blurred due to fast motion of the vehicle and cannot be recognized by the human eye. For this kind of blurring, the kernel involved can be said to be a linear uniform convolution described by its angle and length. We propose a new de-blurring technique in this paper to parametrically estimate the kernel as accurately as possible with emphasis on the length estimation process. We use a technique which employs Hough transform in estimating the kernel angle. To accurately estimate the kernel length, a novel approach using the cepstral transform is introduced. We compare the de-blurred results obtained using our scheme with those of other recently introduced blind de-blurring techniques. The comparisons corroborate that our scheme can remove a large blur from the image captured by the camera to recover vital semantic information about the license plate.

Neural Signatures for Licence Plate Re-identification
Abhinav Kumar,Shantanu Gupta,Vladimir Kozitsky,Sriganesh Madhvanath

Submitted on 12/1/2017

The problem of vehicle licence plate re-identification is generally considered as a one-shot image retrieval problem. The objective of this task is to learn a feature representation (called a "signature") for licence plates. Incoming licence plate images are converted to signatures and matched to a previously collected template database through a distance measure. Then, the input image is recognized as the template whose signature is "nearest" to the input signature. The template database is restricted to contain only a single signature per unique licence plate for our problem. We measure the performance of deep convolutional net-based features adapted from face recognition on this task. In addition, we also test a hybrid approach combining the Fisher vector with a neural network-based embedding called "f2nn" trained with the Triplet loss function. We find that the hybrid approach performs comparably while providing computational benefits. The signature generated by the hybrid approach also shows higher generalizability to datasets more dissimilar to the training corpus.

Efficient Licence Plate Detection By Unique Edge Detection Algorithm and Smarter Interpretation Through IoT
Tejas K,Ashok Reddy K,Pradeep Reddy D,Rajesh Kumar M

Submitted on 10/28/2017

Vehicles play a vital role in modern day transportation systems. Number plate provides a standard means of identification for any vehicle. To serve this purpose, automatic licence plate recognition system was developed. This consisted of four major steps: Pre-processing of the obtained image, extraction of licence plate region, segmentation and character recognition. In earlier research, direct application of Sobel edge detection algorithm or applying threshold were used as key steps to extract the licence plate region, which does not produce effective results when the captured image is subjected to the high intensity of light. The use of morphological operations causes deformity in the characters during segmentation. We propose a novel algorithm to tackle the mentioned issues through a unique edge detection algorithm. It is also a tedious task to create and update the database of required vehicles frequently. This problem is solved by the use of Internet of things(IOT) where an online database can be created and updated from any module instantly. Also, through IoT, we connect all the cameras in a geographical area to one server to create a universal eye which drastically increases the probability of tracing a vehicle over having manual database attached to each camera for identification purpose.

Towards End-to-End Car License Plates Detection and Recognition with Deep Neural Networks
Hui Li,Peng Wang,Chunhua Shen

Submitted on 9/26/2017

In this work, we tackle the problem of car license plate detection and recognition in natural scene images. We propose a unified deep neural network which can localize license plates and recognize the letters simultaneously in a single forward pass. The whole network can be trained end-to-end. In contrast to existing approaches which take license plate detection and recognition as two separate tasks and settle them step by step, our method jointly solves these two tasks by a single network. It not only avoids intermediate error accumulation, but also accelerates the processing speed. For performance evaluation, three datasets including images captured from various scenes under different conditions are tested. Extensive experiments show the effectiveness and efficiency of our proposed approach.

Adversarial Generation of Training Examples: Applications to Moving Vehicle License Plate Recognition
Xinlong Wang,Zhipeng Man,Mingyu You,Chunhua Shen

Submitted on 7/11/2017

Generative Adversarial Networks (GAN) have attracted much research attention recently, leading to impressive results for natural image generation. However, to date little success was observed in using GAN generated images for improving classification tasks. Here we attempt to explore, in the context of car license plate recognition, whether it is possible to generate synthetic training data using GAN to improve recognition accuracy. With a carefully-designed pipeline, we show that the answer is affirmative. First, a large-scale image set is generated using the generator of GAN, without manual annotation. Then, these images are fed to a deep convolutional neural network (DCNN) followed by a bidirectional recurrent neural network (BRNN) with long short-term memory (LSTM), which performs the feature learning and sequence labelling. Finally, the pre-trained model is fine-tuned on real images. Our experimental results on a few data sets demonstrate the effectiveness of using GAN images: an improvement of 7.5% over a strong baseline with moderate-sized real data being available. We show that the proposed framework achieves competitive recognition accuracy on challenging test datasets. We also leverage the depthwise separate convolution to construct a lightweight convolutional RNN, which is about half size and 2x faster on CPU. Combining this framework and the proposed pipeline, we make progress in performing accurate recognition on mobile and embedded devices.

License Plate Detection and Recognition Using Deeply Learned Convolutional Neural Networks
Syed Zain Masood,Guang Shu,Afshin Dehghan,Enrique G. Ortiz

Submitted on 3/21/2017

This work details Sighthounds fully automated license plate detection and recognition system. The core technology of the system is built using a sequence of deep Convolutional Neural Networks (CNNs) interlaced with accurate and efficient algorithms. The CNNs are trained and fine-tuned so that they are robust under different conditions (e.g. variations in pose, lighting, occlusion, etc.) and can work across a variety of license plate templates (e.g. sizes, backgrounds, fonts, etc). For quantitative analysis, we show that our system outperforms the leading license plate detection and recognition technology i.e. ALPR on several benchmarks. Our system is available to developers through the Sighthound Cloud API at

Segmentation-free Vehicle License Plate Recognition using ConvNet-RNN
Teik Koon Cheang,Yong Shean Chong,Yong Haur Tay

Submitted on 1/23/2017

While vehicle license plate recognition (VLPR) is usually done with a sliding window approach, it can have limited performance on datasets with characters that are of variable width. This can be solved by hand-crafting algorithms to prescale the characters. While this approach can work fairly well, the recognizer is only aware of the pixels within each detector window, and fails to account for other contextual information that might be present in other parts of the image. A sliding window approach also requires training data in the form of presegmented characters, which can be more difficult to obtain. In this paper, we propose a unified ConvNet-RNN model to recognize real-world captured license plate photographs. By using a Convolutional Neural Network (ConvNet) to perform feature extraction and using a Recurrent Neural Network (RNN) for sequencing, we address the problem of sliding window approaches being unable to access the context of the entire image by feeding the entire image as input to the ConvNet. This has the added benefit of being able to perform end-to-end training of the entire model on labelled, full license plate images. Experimental results comparing the ConvNet-RNN architecture to a sliding window-based approach shows that the ConvNet-RNN architecture performs significantly better.

Proposal for Automatic License and Number Plate Recognition System for Vehicle Identification
Hamed Saghaei

Submitted on 10/9/2016

In this paper, we propose an automatic and mechanized license and number plate recognition (LNPR) system which can extract the license plate number of the vehicles passing through a given location using image processing algorithms. No additional devices such as GPS or radio frequency identification (RFID) need to be installed for implementing the proposed system. Using special cameras, the system takes pictures from each passing vehicle and forwards the image to the computer for being processed by the LPR software. Plate recognition software uses different algorithms such as localization, orientation, normalization, segmentation and finally optical character recognition (OCR). The resulting data is applied to compare with the records on a database. Experimental results reveal that the presented system successfully detects and recognizes the vehicle number plate on real images. This system can also be used for security and traffic control.

Benchmark for License Plate Character Segmentation
Gabriel Resende Gon\u00e7alves,Sirlene Pio Gomes da Silva,David Menotti,William Robson Schwartz

Submitted on 7/11/2016

Automatic License Plate Recognition (ALPR) has been the focus of many researches in the past years. In general, ALPR is divided into the following problems: detection of on-track vehicles, license plates detection, segmention of license plate characters and optical character recognition (OCR). Even though commercial solutions are available for controlled acquisition conditions, e.g., the entrance of a parking lot, ALPR is still an open problem when dealing with data acquired from uncontrolled environments, such as roads and highways when relying only on imaging sensors. Due to the multiple orientations and scales of the license plates captured by the camera, a very challenging task of the ALPR is the License Plate Character Segmentation (LPCS) step, which effectiveness is required to be (near) optimal to achieve a high recognition rate by the OCR. To tackle the LPCS problem, this work proposes a novel benchmark composed of a dataset designed to focus specifically on the character segmentation step of the ALPR within an evaluation protocol. Furthermore, we propose the Jaccard-Centroid coefficient, a new evaluation measure more suitable than the Jaccard coefficient regarding the location of the bounding box within the ground-truth annotation. The dataset is composed of 2,000 Brazilian license plates consisting of 14,000 alphanumeric symbols and their corresponding bounding box annotations. We also present a new straightforward approach to perform LPCS efficiently. Finally, we provide an experimental evaluation for the dataset based on four LPCS approaches and demonstrate the importance of character segmentation for achieving an accurate OCR.

CNN for License Plate Motion Deblurring
Pavel Svoboda,Michal Hradis,Lukas Marsik,Pavel Zemcik

Submitted on 2/25/2016

In this work we explore the previously proposed approach of direct blind deconvolution and denoising with convolutional neural networks in a situation where the blur kernels are partially constrained. We focus on blurred images from a real-life traffic surveillance system, on which we, for the first time, demonstrate that neural networks trained on artificial data provide superior reconstruction quality on real images compared to traditional blind deconvolution methods. The training data is easy to obtain by blurring sharp photos from a target system with a very rough approximation of the expected blur kernels, thereby allowing custom CNNs to be trained for a specific application (image content and blur range). Additionally, we evaluate the behavior and limits of the CNNs with respect to blur direction range and length.

Reading Car License Plates Using Deep Convolutional Neural Networks and LSTMs
Hui Li,Chunhua Shen

Submitted on 1/21/2016

In this work, we tackle the problem of car license plate detection and recognition in natural scene images. Inspired by the success of deep neural networks (DNNs) in various vision applications, here we leverage DNNs to learn high-level features in a cascade framework, which lead to improved performance on both detection and recognition. Firstly, we train a $37$-class convolutional neural network (CNN) to detect all characters in an image, which results in a high recall, compared with conventional approaches such as training a binary text/non-text classifier. False positives are then eliminated by the second plate/non-plate CNN classifier. Bounding box refinement is then carried out based on the edge information of the license plates, in order to improve the intersection-over-union (IoU) ratio. The proposed cascade framework extracts license plates effectively with both high recall and precision. Last, we propose to recognize the license characters as a {sequence labelling} problem. A recurrent neural network (RNN) with long short-term memory (LSTM) is trained to recognize the sequential features extracted from the whole license plate via CNNs. The main advantage of this approach is that it is segmentation free. By exploring context information and avoiding errors caused by segmentation, the RNN method performs better than a baseline method of combining segmentation and deep CNN classification; and achieves state-of-the-art recognition accuracy.

License Plate Recognition System Based on Color Coding Of License Plates
Jani Biju Babjan

Submitted on 6/8/2015

License Plate Recognition Systems are used to determine the license plate number of a vehicle. The current system mainly uses Optical Character Recognition to recognize the number plate. There are several problems to this system. Some of them include interchanging of several letters or numbers (letter O with digit 0), difficulty in localizing the license plate, high error rate, use of different fonts in license plates etc. So a new system to recognize the license plate number using color coding of license plates is proposed in this paper. Easier localization of license plate can be done by searching for the start or stop patters of license plates. An eight segment display system along with traditional numbering with the first and last segments left for start or stop patterns is proposed in this paper. Practical applications include several areas under Internet of Things (IoT).

Detection and Recognition of Malaysian Special License Plate Based On SIFT Features
Hooi Sin Ng,Yong Haur Tay,Kim Meng Liang,Hamam Mokayed,Hock Woon Hon

Submitted on 4/27/2015

Automated car license plate recognition systems are developed and applied for purpose of facilitating the surveillance, law enforcement, access control and intelligent transportation monitoring with least human intervention. In this paper, an algorithm based on SIFT feature points clustering and matching is proposed to address the issue of recognizing Malaysian special plates. These special plates do not follow the format of standard car plates as they may contain italic, cursive, connected and small letters. The algorithm is tested with 150 Malaysian special plate images under different environment and the promising experimental results demonstrate that the proposed algorithm is relatively robust.

Mobile Phone Based Vehicle License Plate Recognition for Road Policing
Lajish V. L.,Sunil Kumar Kopparapu

Submitted on 4/7/2015

Identity of a vehicle is done through the vehicle license plate by traffic police in general. Au- tomatic vehicle license plate recognition has several applications in intelligent traffic management systems. The security situation across the globe and particularly in India demands a need to equip the traffic police with a system that enables them to get instant details of a vehicle. The system should be easy to use, should be mobile, and work 24 x 7. In this paper, we describe a mobile phone based, client-server architected, license plate recognition system. While we use the state of the art image processing and pattern recognition algorithms tuned for Indian conditions to automatically recognize non-uniform license plates, the main contribution is in creating an end to end usable solution. The client application runs on a mobile device and a server application, with access to vehicle information database, is hosted centrally. The solution enables capture of license plate image captured by the phone camera and passes to the server; on the server the license plate number is recognized; the data associated with the number plate is then sent back to the mobile device, instantaneously. We describe the end to end system architecture in detail. A working prototype of the proposed system has been implemented in the lab environment.

A Robust and Efficient Method for Improving Accuracy of License Plate Characters Recognition
Reza Azad,Hamid Reza Shayegh,Hamed Amiri

Submitted on 7/24/2014

License Plate Recognition (LPR) plays an important role on the traffic monitoring and parking management. A robust and efficient method for enhancing accuracy of license plate characters recognition based on K Nearest Neighbours (K-NN) classifier is presented in this paper. The system first prepares a contour form of the extracted character, then the angle and distance feature information about the character is extracted and finally K-NN classifier is used to character recognition. Angle and distance features of a character have been computed based on distribution of points on the bitmap image of character. In K-NN method, the Euclidean distance between testing point and reference points is calculated in order to find the k-nearest neighbours. We evaluated our method on the available dataset that contain 1200 sample. Using 70% samples for training, we tested our method on whole samples and obtained 99% correct recognition rate.Further, we achieved average 99.41% accuracy using three/strategy validation technique on 1200 dataset.

New Method for Optimization of License Plate Recognition system with Use of Edge Detection and Connected Component
Reza Azad,Hamid Reza Shayegh

Submitted on 7/24/2014

License Plate recognition plays an important role on the traffic monitoring and parking management systems. In this paper, a fast and real time method has been proposed which has an appropriate application to find tilt and poor quality plates. In the proposed method, at the beginning, the image is converted into binary mode using adaptive threshold. Then, by using some edge detection and morphology operations, plate number location has been specified. Finally, if the plat has tilt, its tilt is removed away. This method has been tested on another paper data set that has different images of the background, considering distance, and angel of view so that the correct extraction rate of plate reached at 98.66%.

Real-Time and Efficient Method for Accuracy Enhancement of Edge Based License Plate Recognition System
Reza Azad,Babak Azad,Hamid Reza Shayegh

Submitted on 7/24/2014

License Plate Recognition plays an important role on the traffic monitoring and parking management. Administration and restriction of those transportation tools for their better service becomes very essential. In this paper, a fast and real time method has an appropriate application to find plates that the plat has tilt and the picture quality is poor. In the proposed method, at the beginning, the image is converted into binary mode with use of adaptive threshold. And with use of edge detection and morphology operation, plate number location has been specified and if the plat has tilt; its tilt is removed away. Then its characters are distinguished using image processing techniques. Finally, K Nearest Neighbour (KNN) classifier was used for character recognition. This method has been tested on available data set that has different images of the background, considering distance, and angel of view so that the correct extraction rate of plate reached at 98% and character recognition rate achieved at 99.12%. Further we tested our character recognition stage on Persian vehicle data set and we achieved 99% correct recognition rate.

Novel and Fast Algorithm for Extracting License Plate Location Based on Edge Analysis
Reza Azad,Mohammad Baghdadi

Submitted on 7/24/2014

Nowadays in developing or developed countries, the Intelligent Transportation System (ITS) technology has attracted so much attention to itself. License Plate Recognition (LPR) systems have many applications in ITSs, such as the payment of parking fee, controlling the traffic volume, traffic data collection, etc. This paper presents a new and fast method for license plate extraction based on edge analysis. our proposed method consist of four stage, which are edge detection, non-useable edge and noise removing, edge analysis and morphology-based license plate extraction. In the result part, the proposed algorithm is applied on vehicle database and the accuracy rate reached 98%. From the experimental results it is shown that the proposed method gives fairly acceptable level of accuracy for practical license plate recognition system.

Novel and Automatic Parking Inventory System Based on Pattern Recognition and Directional Chain Code
Reza Azad,Majid Nazari

Submitted on 7/23/2014

The objective of this paper is to design an efficient vehicle license plate recognition System and to implement it for automatic parking inventory system. The system detects the vehicle first and then captures the image of the front view of the vehicle. Vehicle license plate is localized and characters are segmented. For finding the place of plate, a novel and real time method is expressed. A new and robust technique based on directional chain code is used for character recognition. The resulting vehicle number is then compared with the available database of all the vehicles so as to come up with information about the vehicle type and to charge entrance cost accordingly. The system is then allowed to open parking barrier for the vehicle and generate entrance cost receipt. The vehicle information (such as entrance time, date, and cost amount) is also stored in the database to maintain the record. The hardware and software integrated system is implemented and a working prototype model is developed. Under the available database, the average accuracy of locating vehicle license plate obtained 100%. Using 70% samples of character for training, we tested our scheme on whole samples and obtained 100% correct recognition rate. Further we tested our character recognition stage on Persian vehicle data set and we achieved 99% correct recognition.

Localization of License Plate Using Morphological Operations
V. Karthikeyan,V. J. Vijayalakshmi

Submitted on 2/23/2014

It is believed that there are currently millions of vehicles on the roads worldwide. The over speed of vehicles,theft of vehicles, disobeying traffic rules in public, an unauthorized person entering the restricted area are keep on increasing. In order restrict against these criminal activities, we need an automatic public security system. Each vehicle has their own Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) as their primary identifier. The VIN is actually a License Number which states a legal license to participate in the public traffic. The proposed paper is to identify the vehicle with the help of vehicles License Plate (LP).LPRS is one the most important part of the Intelligent Transportation System (ITS) to locate the LP. In this paper certain existing algorithm drawbacks are overcome by the proposed morphological operations for LPRS. Morphological operation is chosen due to its higher efficiency, noise filter capacity, accuracy, exact localization of LP and speed.

License Plate Recognition (LPR): A Review with Experiments for Malaysia Case Study
Nuzulha Khilwani Ibrahim,Emaliana Kasmuri,Norazira A Jalil,Mohd Adili Norasikin,Sazilah Salam,Mohamad Riduwan Md Nawawi

Submitted on 1/22/2014

Most vehicle license plate recognition use neural network techniques to enhance its computing capability. The image of the vehicle license plate is captured and processed to produce a textual output for further processing. This paper reviews image processing and neural network techniques applied at different stages which are preprocessing, filtering, feature extraction, segmentation and recognition in such way to remove the noise of the image, to enhance the image quality and to expedite the computing process by converting the characters in the image into respective text. An exemplar experiment has been done in MATLAB to show the basic process of the image processing especially for license plate in Malaysia case study. An algorithm is adapted into the solution for parking management system. The solution then is implemented as proof of concept to the algorithm.

Brazilian License Plate Detection Using Histogram of Oriented Gradients and Sliding Windows
R. F. Prates,G. C\u00e1mara-Ch\u00e1vez,William R. Schwartz,D. Menotti

Submitted on 1/9/2014

Due to the increasingly need for automatic traffic monitoring, vehicle license plate detection is of high interest to perform automatic toll collection, traffic law enforcement, parking lot access control, among others. In this paper, a sliding window approach based on Histogram of Oriented Gradients (HOG) features is used for Brazilian license plate detection. This approach consists in scanning the whole image in a multiscale fashion such that the license plate is located precisely. The main contribution of this work consists in a deep study of the best setup for HOG descriptors on the detection of Brazilian license plates, in which HOG have never been applied before. We also demonstrate the reliability of this method ensured by a recall higher than 98% (with a precision higher than 78%) in a publicly available data set.

Multi-digit Number Recognition from Street View Imagery using Deep Convolutional Neural Networks
Ian J. Goodfellow,Yaroslav Bulatov,Julian Ibarz,Sacha Arnoud,Vinay Shet

Submitted on 12/20/2013

Recognizing arbitrary multi-character text in unconstrained natural photographs is a hard problem. In this paper, we address an equally hard sub-problem in this domain viz. recognizing arbitrary multi-digit numbers from Street View imagery. Traditional approaches to solve this problem typically separate out the localization, segmentation, and recognition steps. In this paper we propose a unified approach that integrates these three steps via the use of a deep convolutional neural network that operates directly on the image pixels. We employ the DistBelief implementation of deep neural networks in order to train large, distributed neural networks on high quality images. We find that the performance of this approach increases with the depth of the convolutional network, with the best performance occurring in the deepest architecture we trained, with eleven hidden layers. We evaluate this approach on the publicly available SVHN dataset and achieve over $96\%$ accuracy in recognizing complete street numbers. We show that on a per-digit recognition task, we improve upon the state-of-the-art, achieving $97.84\%$ accuracy. We also evaluate this approach on an even more challenging dataset generated from Street View imagery containing several tens of millions of street number annotations and achieve over $90\%$ accuracy. To further explore the applicability of the proposed system to broader text recognition tasks, we apply it to synthetic distorted text from reCAPTCHA. reCAPTCHA is one of the most secure reverse turing tests that uses distorted text to distinguish humans from bots. We report a $99.8\%$ accuracy on the hardest category of reCAPTCHA. Our evaluations on both tasks indicate that at specific operating thresholds, the performance of the proposed system is comparable to, and in some cases exceeds, that of human operators.

ALPRS - A New Approach for License Plate Recognition using the Sift Algorithm
Francisco Assis da Silva,Almir Olivette Artero,Maria Stela Veludo de Paiva,Ricardo Luis Barbosa

Submitted on 3/7/2013

This paper presents a new approach for the automatic license plate recognition, which includes the SIFT algorithm in step to locate the plate in the input image. In this new approach, besides the comparison of the features obtained with the SIFT algorithm, the correspondence between the spatial orientations and the positioning associated with the keypoints is also observed. Afterwards, an algorithm is used for the character recognition of the plates, very fast, which makes it possible its application in real time. The results obtained with the proposed approach presented very good success rates, so much for locating the characters in the input image, as for their recognition.

An Offline Technique for Localization of License Plates for Indian Commercial Vehicles
Satadal Saha,Subhadip Basu,Mita Nasipuri,Dipak Kumar Basu

Submitted on 3/4/2010

Automatic License Plate Recognition (ALPR) is a challenging area of research due to its importance to variety of commercial applications. The overall problem may be subdivided into two key modules, firstly, localization of license plates from vehicle images, and secondly, optical character recognition of extracted license plates. In the current work, we have concentrated on the first part of the problem, i.e., localization of license plate regions from Indian commercial vehicles as a significant step towards development of a complete ALPR system for Indian vehicles. The technique is based on color based segmentation of vehicle images and identification of potential license plate regions. True license plates are finally localized based on four spatial and horizontal contrast features. The technique successfully localizes the actual license plates in 73.4% images.