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Human Face Detection and Segmentation using Eigenvalues of Covariance Matrix, Hough Transform and Raster Scan Algorithms
In this paper we propose a novel method for human face segmentation using the elliptical structure of the human head. It makes use of the information present in the edge map of the image. In this approach we use the fact that the eigenvalues of covariance matrix represent the elliptical structure. The large and small eigenvalues of covariance matrix are associated with major and minor axial lengths of an ellipse. The other elliptical parameters are used to identify the centre and orientation of the face. Since an Elliptical Hough Transform requires 5D Hough Space, the Circular Hough Transform (CHT) is used to evaluate the elliptical parameters. Sparse matrix technique is used to perform CHT, as it squeeze zero elements, and have only a small number of non-zero elements, thereby having an advantage of less storage space and computational time. Neighborhood suppression scheme is used to identify the valid Hough peaks. The accurate position of the circumference pixels for occluded and distorted ellipses is identified using Bresenham-s Raster Scan Algorithm which uses the geometrical symmetry properties. This method does not require the evaluation of tangents for curvature contours, which are very sensitive to noise. The method has been evaluated on several images with different face orientations.
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