Morphological algorithms for processing tickets by hand held assay

Mingkai Hsueh, Antonio Plaza, Jing Wang, Su Wang, Wei Min Liu, Hsuan Ren, Chein I. Chang, Janet L. Jensen, James O. Jensen, Matthew A. Odom, Ryen Hydutsky, Harlan Knapp, Ray Yin

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


There is an immediate need for the ability to detect, identify and quantify chemical and biological agents in water supplies during water point selection, production, storage, and distribution to consumers. Through a U.S. Army sponsored Joint Service Agent Water Monitor (JSAWM) program, based on hand-held assays that exist in a ticket format, we are developing new algorithms for automatic processing of tickets. In previous work, detection of control dots in the tickets was carried out by traditional image segmentation approaches such as Otsu's method and other entropy-based thresholding techniques. In experiments, it was found that the approaches above were sensitive to illumination effects in the camera reader. As a result, more robust, object-oriented approaches to detect the control dots are required. Mathematical morphology is a powerful technique for image analysis that focuses on the size and shape of the objects in the scene. In this work, we describe a novel application of morphological operations in identification of control dots in hand held assay ticket imagery. Such images were pre-processed by a light compensation algorithm prior to morphological analysis. The performance of the proposed approach is evaluated using Receiving Operating Characteristics (ROC) analysis.

Original languageEnglish
Article number28
Pages (from-to)221-229
Number of pages9
JournalProceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering
StatePublished - 2004
EventChemical and Biological Standoff Detection II - Philadelphia, PA, United States
Duration: 27 Oct 200428 Oct 2004


  • Chemical/biological agent detection
  • Hand held assay(HHA)
  • Mathematical morphology
  • ROC analysis


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