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Photonics-Enabled Tools for Forensic Investigations to be Advanced at SPIE DSS
Date:4/17/2013

BELLINGHAM, Washington, USA (PRWEB) April 17, 2013

Forensic investigation of the Boston Marathon bombings earlier this week utilized numerous photonics technologies that play central roles in finding answers after such incidents as well as in helping to prevent others. Digital video imaging and data management, facial recognition technologies, and optical and photonics methods of chemical detection are among several such topics to be presented at SPIE Defense, Security and Sensing (DSS) symposium opening in Baltimore on 29 April.

Tools for matching face imagery acquired from video or still cameras with face-recognition databases is one example. Optical imaging technologies also enable identifying suspects by their gait caught on camera, and can calculate a suspect's pulse emotional state – an indicator of stress such as anticipating a bold action. Explosives can be identified from as much as 100 meters away.

Stephen DelMarco, Senior Principal Research Engineer at BAE Systems, will be presenting developments in fusion techniques still in the research stage that will make storing and transmitting facial images much more efficient. His system employs multichannel image fusion for 3-D color face imagery, offering a big step up from previous matching systems.

"Now you can exploit multiple channels -- for example, red, green and blue color channels, along with depth information that give you better image recognition," Dr. DelMarco said. "In the old days, you had a single channel; a gray-scale image to process, which provided less information."

One benefit will be image compression for transmission of images captured by color cameras over wireless devices or for storage on disk drives. The reduced size of compressed images offers the same image quality but in a much smaller
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