Selected annotated bibliographies for adaptive filtering of digital image data

Open-File Report 88-104




Digital spatial filtering is an important tool both for enhancing the information content of satellite image data and for implementing cosmetic effects which make the imagery more interpretable and appealing to the eye. Spatial filtering is a context-dependent operation that alters the gray level of a pixel by computing a weighted average formed from the gray level values of other pixels in the immediate vicinity.

Traditional spatial filtering involves passing a particular filter or set of filters over an entire image. This assumes that the filter parameter values are appropriate for the entire image, which in turn is based on the assumption that the statistics of the image are constant over the image. However, the statistics of an image may vary widely over the image, requiring an adaptive or "smart" filter whose parameters change as a function of the local statistical properties of the image. Then a pixel would be averaged only with more typical members of the same population.

This annotated bibliography cites some of the work done in the area of adaptive filtering. The methods usually fall into two categories, (a) those that segment the image into subregions, each assumed to have stationary statistics, and use a different filter on each subregion, and (b) those that use a two-dimensional "sliding window" to continuously estimate the filter either the spatial or frequency domain, or may utilize both domains. They may be used to deal with images degraded by space variant noise, to suppress undesirable local radiometric statistics while enforcing desirable (user-defined) statistics, to treat problems where space-variant point spread functions are involved, to segment images into regions of constant value for classification, or to "tune" images in order to remove (nonstationary) variations in illumination, noise, contrast, shadows, or haze.

Since adpative filtering, like nonadaptive filtering, is used in image processing to accomplish various goals, this bibliography is organized in subsections based on application areas. Contrast enhancement, edge enhancement, noise suppression, and smoothing are typically performed in order imaging process, (for example, degradations due to the optics and electronics of the sensor, or to blurring caused by the intervening atmosphere, uniform motion, or defocused optics). Some of the papers listed may apply to more than one of the above categories; when this happens the paper is listed under the category for which the paper's emphasis is greatest. A list of survey articles is also supplied. These articles are general discussions on adaptive filters and reviews of work done. Finally, a short list of miscellaneous articles are listed which were felt to be sufficiently important to be included, but do not fit into any of the above categories. This bibliography, listing items published from 1970 through 1987, is extensive, but by no means complete. It is intended as a guide for scientists and image analysts, listing references for background information as well as areas of significant development in adaptive filtering.

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USGS Numbered Series
Selected annotated bibliographies for adaptive filtering of digital image data
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Open-File Report
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U.S. Geological Survey
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Earth Resources Observation and Science (EROS) Center
iii, 36 p.