Abstract: Near infrared (NIR) to Visible (VIS) face matching is challenging due to the significant domain gaps as well as a lack of sufficient data for cross-modality model training. To overcome this problem, we propose a novel method for paired NIR-VIS facial image generation. Specifically, we reconstruct 3D face shape and reflectance from a large 2D facial dataset and introduce a novel method of transforming the VIS reflectance to NIR reflectance. We then use a physically-based renderer to generate a vast, high-resolution and photorealistic dataset consisting of various poses and identities in the NIR and VIS spectra. Moreover, to facilitate the identity feature learning, we propose an IDentity-based Maximum Mean Discrepancy (ID-MMD) loss, which not only reduces the modality gap between NIR and VIS images at the domain level but encourages the network to focus on the identity features instead of facial details, such as poses and accessories. Extensive experiments conducted on four challenging NIR-VIS face recognition benchmarks demonstrate that the proposed method can achieve comparable performance with the state-of-the-art (SOTA) methods without requiring any existing NIR-VIS face recognition datasets. With slightly fine-tuning on the target NIR-VIS face recognition datasets, our method can significantly surpass the SOTA performance. Code and pretrained models are released under the insightface GitHub.
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