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16 August 2001 Perceptual evaluation of different image fusion schemes
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Human perceptual performance was tested with images of nighttime outdoor scenes. The scenes were registered both with a dual band (visual and near infrared) image intensified low-light CCD camera (DII) and with a thermal middle wavelength band (3-5 micrometers ) infrared (IR) camera. Fused imagery was produced through a pyramid image merging scheme, in combination with different color mappings. For all (individual and fused) image modalities, small patches of the scenes, displaying a range of different objects and materials, were briefly presented to human observers. The sensitivity of human observers was tested for different recognition tasks. The results show that grayscale image fusion yields improved performance levels for most perceptual tasks investigated here. When an appropriate color mapping scheme is applied, the addition of color to grayscale fused imagery significantly increases observer sensitivity for a given condition and a certain task. However, inappropriate use of color significantly decreases observer performance compared to straightforward grayscale image fusion. This suggests that color mapping should adapt to the visual task and the conditions (scene content) at hand.
© (2001) COPYRIGHT Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE). Downloading of the abstract is permitted for personal use only.
Alexander Toet and Jan Kees IJspeert "Perceptual evaluation of different image fusion schemes", Proc. SPIE 4380, Signal Processing, Sensor Fusion, and Target Recognition X, (16 August 2001);


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