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Fast and adaptive region merging based on perceptual hashing via multi-thresholding for SAR image segmentation

Ji, Jian, Lü, Xiao-jia, Han, Lin-yi, Zhang, Chun-hui
Remote sensing letters 2016 v.7 no.12 pp. 1199-1208
algorithms, remote sensing, synthetic aperture radar, texture
Due to the serious speckle noise in synthetic aperture radar (SAR) image, segmentation of SAR images is still a challenging problem. In this paper, a novel region merging method based on perceptual hashing is proposed for SAR image segmentation. In the proposed method, perceptual hash algorithm (PHA) is utilized to calculate the degree of similarity between different regions during region merging in SAR image segmentation. After reducing the speckle noise by Lee filter which maintains the sharpness of SAR image, a set of different homogeneous regions is constructed based on multi-thresholding and treated as the input data of region merging. The new contribution of this paper is the combination of multi-thresholding for initial segmentation and perceptual hash method for the adaptive process of region merging, which preserves the texture feature of input images and reduces the time complexity of the proposed method. The experimental results on synthetic and real SAR images show that the proposed algorithm is faster and attains higher-quality segmentation results than the three recent state-of-the-art image segmentation methods.