In an attempt to explore the field of image processing, @Samir Khan and I created an application (download here) that demonstrates the removal of two types of noises from an image through frequency and spatial filtering.

Periodic noises and salt & pepper noises are two common types of image noises, usually caused by errors during the image capturing or data transmission process. Periodic noises result in repetitive patterns being added onto the original image, while salt & pepper noises are the irregular appearance of dark pixels in the bright area and bright pixels in the dark area of the image. In this application, we artificially generate these noises and pollute a clean picture in order to demonstrate the removal techniques.

(Fig 1: Picture of Waterloo Office taken by Sophie Tan            Fig 2: Converted to greyscale for processing, added two noises)

In order to remove periodic noises from the image, we apply a 2D Fourier Transform to convert the image from spatial domain to frequency domain, where periodic noises can be visually detected as separate, discrete spikes and therefore easily removed.

(Fig 3 Frequency domain of the magnitude of the image)

One way to remove salt and pepper noises is to apply a median filter to the image. In this application, we run a 3 by 3 kernel across the image matrix that sorts and places the median among the 9 elements as the new matrix entry, thus resulting in the whole image being median-filtered.

Comparison of the image before and after noise removal:

Please refer to the application for more details on the implementation of the two removal techniques.


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