Surface analysis and fingerprint recognition from multi-light imaging collections
Date: 15 May 2023
Thesis or dissertation
University of Exeter
Doctor of Philosophy in Computer Science
Multi-light imaging captures a scene from a fixed viewpoint through multiple photographs, each of which are illuminated from a different direction. Every image reveals information about the surface, with the intensity reflected from each point being measured for all lighting directions. The images captured are known as multi-light image ...
Multi-light imaging captures a scene from a fixed viewpoint through multiple photographs, each of which are illuminated from a different direction. Every image reveals information about the surface, with the intensity reflected from each point being measured for all lighting directions. The images captured are known as multi-light image collections (MLICs), for which a variety of techniques have been developed over recent decades to acquire information from the images. These techniques include shape from shading, photometric stereo and reflectance transformation imaging (RTI). Pixel coordinates from one image in a MLIC will correspond to exactly the same position on the surface across all images in the MLIC since the camera does not move. We assess the relevant literature to the methods presented in this thesis in chapter 1 and describe different types of reflections and surface types, as well as explaining the multi-light imaging process. In chapter 2 we present a novel automated RTI method which requires no calibration equipment (i.e. shiny reference spheres or 3D printed structures as other methods require) and automatically computes the lighting direction and compensates for non-uniform illumination. Then in chapter 3 we describe our novel MLIC method termed Remote Extraction of Latent Fingerprints (RELF) which segments each multi-light imaging photograph into superpixels (small groups of pixels) and uses a neural network classifier to determine whether or not the superpixel contains fingerprint. The RELF algorithm then mosaics these superpixels which are classified as fingerprint together in order to obtain a complete latent print image, entirely contactlessly. In chapter 4 we detail our work with the Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) UK, who described to us with their needs and requirements which helped us to create a prototype RELF imaging device which is now being tested by MPS officers who are validating the quality of the latent prints extracted using our technique. In chapter 5 we then further developed our multi-light imaging latent fingerprint technique to extract latent prints from curved surfaces and automatically correct for surface curvature distortions. We have a patent pending for this method.
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