Adapting the HSV polarization-color mapping for regions with low irradiance and high polarization

J. Scott Tyo, Bradley M. Ratliff, Andrey S. Alenin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

39 Citations (Scopus)


Many mappings from polarization into color have been developed so that polarization information can be displayed. One of the most common of these maps the angle of linear polarization into color hue and degree of linear polarization into color saturation, while preserving the irradiance information from the polarization data. While this strategy enjoys wide popularity, there is a large class of polarization images for which it is not ideal. It is common to have images where the strongest polarization signatures (in terms of degree of polarization) occur in regions of relatively low irradiance: either in shadow in reflective bands or in cold regions in emissive bands. Since the irradiance is low, the chromatic properties of the resulting images are generally not apparent. Here we present an alternate mapping that uses the statistics of the angle of polarization as a measure of confidence in the polarization signature, then amplifies the irradiance in regions of high confidence, and leaves it unchanged in regions of low confidence. Results are shown from an LWIR and a visible spectrum imager.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)4759-4762
Number of pages4
JournalOptics Letters
Issue number20
Publication statusPublished - 10 Oct 2016
Externally publishedYes

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