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Fractal descriptors applied to texture analysis

João Batista Florindo

São Carlos Institute of Physics - University of São Paulo, 2013

This project describes the development, study and application of fractal descriptors to texture analysis. Recently, the literature has shown fractal geometry as a powerful tool for image analysis, with applications to several areas of science. Most of these works use fractal dimension as a descriptor of the object depicted in the image. However, due to the complexity of many problems in this context, some solutions have been proposed to improve this analysis. These proposed methods use not only the value of fractal dimension, but a set of measures which could be extracted by fractal geometry to describe the textures with greater richness and accuracy. Among such techniques, we emphasize the multifractal methodology, multiscale fractal dimension and, more recently, fractal descriptors. This latter technique has demonstrated to be efficient in solving problems related to the discrimination of texture and shape images. This is possible as the extracted descriptors provide a direct representation of the complexity (the details distribution along the scales of observation) in the image. Thus, this solution allows for a rich description of the image studied by analyzing the spatial/spectral distribution of pixels and intensity of colors/gray-levels, with a model which can approximate the human visual perception, generating an automatic and precise method. However, the works about fractal descriptors presented in the literature focus on classical methods to estimate fractal dimension, such as Bouligand-Minkowski and Box-counting. This project aims at studying more deeply the concept, generalizing to other approaches in fractal dimension, as well as exploring different ways of extracting the key features from the logarithmic curve associated with the dimension. The developed methods are applied to texture analysis, in classification problems over public databases, whose results can be compared with literature methods, as well as to the segmentation of satellite images and automatically identifying samples obtained from studies on nanotechnology. The results demonstrate the potential of the methodology developed to solve such problems, showing that this is a new frontier to be explored and used in image analysis and computer vision at all.

keywords: Fractal descriptors, Fractal dimension, Pattern recognition, Texture analysis