A Multivariate Contrast Enhancement Technique for Multispectral Images

Phillip A. Mlsna, Jeffrey J. Rodriguez

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

40 Scopus citations


Multispectral and true-color images are often enhanced using histogram-based methods, usually by adjustment of color components after transformation to a selected secondary color system. Enhancement aimed toward the preservation of certain important perceptual qualities generally calls for the secondary coordinate system to be perceptually based. However, independent modification of the secondary components seldom uses the full extent of the RGB gamut unless some color values are clipped at the RGB boundaries. Preserving perceptual attributes is sometimes less important than obtaining the greatest possible color contrast improvement. This is especially true for color composites derived from multispectral images, which have no significant basis in human perception. A new multivariate enhancement technique we have named “histogram explosion” is able to exploit nearly the full RGB extent without clipping. While not generally based upon a perceptual model, the method can preserve original hue values when parameters are chosen properly. Experimental results of histogram explosion are presented, along with an analysis of its computational complexity.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)212-216
Number of pages5
JournalIEEE Transactions on Geoscience and Remote Sensing
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1995

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering
  • General Earth and Planetary Sciences


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