Detection thresholds of sinusoidal gratings in the simultaneous presence of high-contrast peripheral masking stimuli partially overlapping the test gratings were determined as a function of the separation between the center of the test grating and the peripheral stimulus by a two-alternative forced-choice method. The results showed that the threshold-elevating effect of simultaneously present peripheral masking stimuli depends on how much of the test grating is left unexposed. An additional experiment, in which the detection thresholds in the absence of the peripheral stimulus were determined as a function of the number of cycles of the test grating, enabled us to show that the threshold-elevating effect is somewhat higher than the effect of simply cutting the test grating down in size. The threshold-elevating effects caused by high-contrast peripheral masking stimuli can be explained in terms of a lateral inhibition and a probability summation across space, taking into account the nonuniform sensitivity acro ss the visual field.
© 1983 Optical Society of AmericaPDF Article