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Optics Letters

Optics Letters


  • Editor: Xi-Cheng Zhang
  • Vol. 39, Iss. 13 — Jul. 1, 2014
  • pp: 3857–3859

Enhanced facial recognition for thermal imagery using polarimetric imaging

Kristan P. Gurton, Alex J. Yuffa, and Gorden W. Videen  »View Author Affiliations

Optics Letters, Vol. 39, Issue 13, pp. 3857-3859 (2014)

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We present a series of long-wave-infrared (LWIR) polarimetric-based thermal images of facial profiles in which polarization-state information of the image-forming radiance is retained and displayed. The resultant polarimetric images show enhanced facial features, additional texture, and details that are not present in corresponding conventional thermal imagery. It has been generally thought that conventional thermal imagery (MidIR or LWIR) could not produce the detailed spatial information required for reliable human identification due to the so-called “ghosting” effect often seen in thermal imagery of human subjects. By using polarimetric information, we are able to extract subtle surface features of the human face, thus improving subject identification. Polarimetric image sets considered include the conventional thermal intensity image, S 0 , the two Stokes images, S 1 and S 2 , and a Stokes image product called the degree-of-linear-polarization image.

© 2014 Optical Society of America

OCIS Codes
(040.3060) Detectors : Infrared
(100.2980) Image processing : Image enhancement
(110.0110) Imaging systems : Imaging systems
(110.5405) Imaging systems : Polarimetric imaging

ToC Category:
Imaging Systems

Original Manuscript: March 19, 2014
Revised Manuscript: April 18, 2014
Manuscript Accepted: May 4, 2014
Published: June 23, 2014

Virtual Issues
Vol. 9, Iss. 9 Virtual Journal for Biomedical Optics

Kristan P. Gurton, Alex J. Yuffa, and Gorden W. Videen, "Enhanced facial recognition for thermal imagery using polarimetric imaging," Opt. Lett. 39, 3857-3859 (2014)

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