We present a method for orientation-selective edge detection and enhancement based on the irradiance transport equation. The proposed technique distinguishes the sign of the derivative of the intensity pattern along an arbitrarily selected direction. The method is based on the capacity of liquid-crystal displays to generate simultaneously a contrast reverted replica of the image displayed on it. When both images (the original one and its replica) are imagined across a slightly defocused plane, one obtains an image with enhanced first derivatives. Unlike most Fourier methods, the proposed technique works well with a low-coherence light source, and it does not require precise alignment. The proposed method does not involve numerical processing, and thus it could be potentially useful for processing large images in real-time applications. Validation experiments are presented.
© 2010 Optical Society of America
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