Tactical Image Rendering Tool Image Processing Algorithm for Creation of Unclassified Line Drawings from Classified National Technical Means Imagery
The security classification of the images, and sometimes the inherently large file sizes, prohibit the images from being used in certain operations. One common means for addressing the security classification issue is to create image derived products that are eligible for security classification downgrade. One type of IDP is a line drawing, a simple, street map-like rendering. NIMA maintains the criteria that govern the creation of line drawings. Moreover, NIMA approval is required for any new technique for creating line drawings. What is needed is a NIMA certified automated means for creating image derived product line drawings from NTM image data.
The present invention comprises a computer based automated means of creating unclassified line drawings from National Technical Means (NTM) image data. With the present invention, an operator can create a line drawing in just a few seconds. Most importantly, the present invention is the first automatic tool for producing line drawings that has been certified by the National Imagery and Mapping Agency (NIMA).
The present invention has been certified by NIMA for processing Electro-Optical image types and takes as input a grayscale image and associated metadata from a National Image Transmission Format (NITF) file. Prior to processing, however, pre-screening steps are required to ensure that rigid security constraints are met. Once the pre-screening has been successfully completed, the image processing algorithm(s) that create the line drawings perform filtering and encoding operations. The line drawing can then be saved in a variety of commercial file formats (i.e., tif, png, jpg, nitf).
Mr. M. T. Hickman