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J. Imaging 2019, 5(2), 30; https://doi.org/10.3390/jimaging5020030

Algorithms for Particle Detection in Complex Plasmas

Deutsches Zentrum für Luft- und Raumfahrt e. V., Institut für Materialphysik im Weltraum, 82234 Wessling, Germany
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Received: 14 January 2019 / Revised: 5 February 2019 / Accepted: 17 February 2019 / Published: 21 February 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Image Processing in Soft Condensed Matter)
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Abstract

In complex plasmas, the behavior of freely floating micrometer sized particles is studied. The particles can be directly visualized and recorded by digital video cameras. To analyze the dynamics of single particles, reliable algorithms are required to accurately determine their positions to sub-pixel accuracy from the recorded images. Typically, a straightforward algorithm such as the moment method is used for this task. Here, we combine different variations of the moment method with common techniques for image pre- and post-processing (e.g., noise reduction and fitting), and we investigate the impact of the choice of threshold parameters, including an automatic threshold detection, on synthetic data with known attributes. The results quantitatively show that each algorithm and method has its own advantage, often depending on the problem at hand. This knowledge is applicable not only to complex plasmas, but useful for any kind of comparable image-based particle tracking, e.g., in the field of colloids or granular matter. View Full-Text
Keywords: image processing; complex plasmas; blob detection; low-pass filter; Hanning amplitude filter; automatic threshold detection; Otsu’s method; image moments; geometric moments; particle tracking velocimetry (PTV) image processing; complex plasmas; blob detection; low-pass filter; Hanning amplitude filter; automatic threshold detection; Otsu’s method; image moments; geometric moments; particle tracking velocimetry (PTV)
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Mohr, D.P.; Knapek, C.A.; Huber, P.; Zaehringer, E. Algorithms for Particle Detection in Complex Plasmas. J. Imaging 2019, 5, 30.

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