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RECENT ADVANCES IN EAR BIOMETRICS

INTRODUCTION

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CHAPTER 1
INTRODUCTION

In recent years, biometrics has been receiving a lot of attention. Biometrics plays a role
in almost every aspect of new security measures - from control access point to terrorist
identification. Unfortunately, most biometrics systems nowadays do not live up to their
expectations, usually due to the requirement of well controlled environments or other reasons. As
a result, researchers are actively searching for other means of human recognition for standalone
applications or used cooperatively with other biometrics technology in multimodal environments
in order to enhance the overall system reliability. One of the emerging candidates is Ear
Biometrics.

Try a simple experiment; try to visualize what your ears look like. You were not able
to? Well, then try to describe the ears of someone you see everyday. You will find that even if
you are looking directly at someone's ears, they are still difficult to describe. We simply do not
have the vocabulary for it; our everyday language provides only a few adjectives which can be
applied to ears, all of which are generic adjectives like large or floppy and not ones which are
solely1 used to describe ears. On the other hand, we are all capable of describing the faces of
even briefly glimpsed strangers with significant detail to allow police artists to reconstruct
remarkable resemblances of them. Even though we apparently lack the means to recognize one
another from our ears, we will see that the rich structure of the ear is unique and that it can be
used as an effective biometrics.

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WHAT IS BIOMETRICS?

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CHAPTER 2
WHAT IS BIOMETRICS?

Biometrics comprises methods for uniquely recognizing humans based upon one or more
intrinsic physical or behavioral traits.

Biometric characteristics can be divided in two main classes:

• Physiological are related to the shape of the body. Examples include, but are not limited
to fingerprint, face recognition, DNA, Palm print, hand geometry, iris recognition, which
has largely replaced retina, and odor/scent.

• Behavioral are related to the behavior of a person. Examples include, but are not limited
to typing rhythm, gait, and voice. Some researchers have coined the term behaviometrics
for this class of biometrics.

2.1 MODES OF OPERATION

A biometric system can operate in the following two modes:

• Verification – A one to one comparison of a captured biometric with a stored template to


verify that the individual is who he claims to be. Can be done in conjunction with a smart
card, username or ID number.

• Identification – A one to many comparison of the captured biometric against a biometric


database in attempt to identify an unknown individual.

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APPLICATIONS

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CHAPTER 3
APPLICATIONS

3.1 PHYSICAL ACCESS CONTROL

Physical access control biometrics includes everything that requires identity


authentication by scanning a person's unique physical characteristics. It is used where high
security is a necessity Hospitals, police, the military as well as the financial industry all use
physical access biometrics for the purpose of greater security and efficiency.

3.2 LOGICAL ACCESS CONTROL

Logical access control refers to electronic access controls whose purpose is to limit access
to data files and computer programs to individuals with the genuine authority to access such
information. Militaries and governments use logical access biometrics to protect their large and
powerful networks and systems which require very high levels of security. It is essential for the
large networks of police forces and militaries w

3.3 JUSTICE AND LAW ENFORCEMENT

Biometrics technology authenticates an individual's identity automatically, and has several


useful applications within Justice and Law Enforcement. Biometric technology has the ability to
recognize fingerprint, iris, voice, facial recognition, hand, palm or skin. Biometric authentication
is greatly superior to card, token or password systems which can be stolen or counterfeited.

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3.4 HEALTHCARE BIOMETRICS

We hear all the time about the mistakes that are made within our healthcare system these
days. Records are mixed up, medical charts are confused, the wrong medication is given to the
wrong patient. Someone who shouldn't get their hands on your medical information does. There
is a desperate race going on to find the best method of securing your data and preventing
mistakes with consequences that range from embarrassing to deadly.

Finally, a solution has been found. Biometrics has revolutionized the healthcare security
industry. Biometrics is the study and analysis of biological data. Devices can take unique
information about you from your eye, or your hand print, or your thumb print and use it to
identify you. This information can be used to ensure that you are who you say you are, and you
have permission to be working with the healthcare information you are trying to access.

3.5 BORDER CONTROL/ AIRPORTS

Within databases of Biometric information can also be electronic reads of passports. For
identity management at Border Control/ Airports there exist two tier identity verification
processes, which can read passports, provide an electronic profile for the individual and organize
with accompanying fingerprint/iris scan etc. to create the most accurate identification profiles in
the world.

Passport reading technology is optical Biometrics, which scans the image of the passport
and databases the enclosed information. This is especially useful for identity management for
Border Control/ Airports where the systems can authenticate travel documents provide reference
to a traveler profile at the same time ensuring the security of the traveler's sensitive information.

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3.6 FINANCIAL AND TRANSACTIONAL SECURITY

Financial and transactional security, and identity theft protection are more of an issue
today than ever before! Have you ever panicked because you lost your wallet, with all of your
ATM and credit cards in it? Do you fear to bank via internet banking because you're worried
that your information will be stolen, along with your money?

Do you look over your shoulder three times before entering your PIN at the ATM machine to
make absolutely sure no one can see which numbers you're pressing? Does online shopping
worry you because you're scared someone will get your credit card number? Would you feel
much safer if there was a more fool proof way of conducting financial transactions that was more
secure than 4 numbers?

Let's say you're standing at the ATM, and enter not only your PIN, but also a thumb print or
voice scan before you get money. What if, when you go into the bank, they ask you not only for
a piece of identification but also an image of your iris? Thus, there is no risk of security.

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OVERVIEW

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CHAPTER 4
OVERVIEW

Although [1] a newcomer in the biometrics field, ears have long been used as a means
of human identification in the forensic field. Traditional and manual methods for description of
ear features and ear identification have been developed for more than 10 years .During crime
scene investigation, ear marks are often used for identification in the absence of(valid)
fingerprints. Just like fingerprints, the long-held history of the use of ear shapes/marks suggests
its use for automatic human identification. An ear recognition system is very much like a typical
face recognition system and consists of five components: image acquisition, preprocessing,
feature extraction, model training and template matching.

During image acquisition, an image of the ear is captured, usually with a CCD camera.
Although other methods such as the use of range sensors are also adopted, 2D image data as
input remains the mainstream choice. For preprocessing, standard techniques such as histogram
equalization and normalization are often used. As for feature extraction and model training,
different approaches vary greatly as they are directly related to the modeling of the ear and the
way of interpretation. Lastly, the template matching stages is largely the same and standard
statistical error analysis adopted.

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A SIMPLE BIOMETRIC SYSTEM

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CHAPTER 5
A SIMPLE BIOMETRIC SYSTEM

5.1 Simple Biometric System Block Diagram

The first time an individual uses a biometric system is called an enrollment. During
the enrollment, biometric information from an individual is stored. In subsequent uses,
biometric information is detected and compared with the information stored at the time of
enrollment. Note that it is crucial that storage and retrieval of such systems themselves be
secure if the biometric system is to be robust.

The first block (sensor) is the interface between the real world and the system; it
has to acquire all the necessary data. Most of the times it is an image acquisition system,
but it can change according to the characteristics desired. The second block performs all
the necessary pre-processing: it has to remove artifacts from the sensor, to enhance the

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input (e.g. removing background noise), to use some kind of normalization, etc. In the
third block necessary features are extracted. This step is an important step as the correct
features need to be extracted in the optimal way. A vector of numbers or an image with
particular properties is used to create a template. A template is a synthesis of the relevant
characteristics extracted from the source. Elements of the biometric measurement that are
not used in the comparison algorithm are discarded in the template to reduce the file size
and to protect the identity of the enrollee.

If enrollment is being performed, the template is simply stored somewhere (on a


card or within a database or both). [6]If a matching phase is being performed, the
obtained template is passed to a matcher that compares it with other existing templates,
estimating the distance between them using any algorithm (e.g. Hamming distance). The
matching program will analyze the template with the input. This will then be output for
any specified use or purpose (e.g. entrance in a restricted area).

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COMPARISON WITH OTHER BIOMETRICS

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CHAPTER 6
COMPARISON WITH OTHER BIOMETRICS

6.1 FACE
Among the list of popular, appearance-based biometrics, ear biometrics resembles face most.
Both of them make use of facial features and naturally face the same problem, namely
illumination, occlusion and head rotation. In the absence of a well-controlled environment,
illumination can varies dramatically in different image acquisition tries. This is especially true
for the ear, which possesses a more prominent contour than the face. The auricle may cast
shadows on other parts of the ear, which in itself a kind of occlusion. Just as a face maybe
covered with a scarf, the ears maybe partially or completely covered by hair or ear muffles. This
implies that cooperation of the subject is required in order to acquire an acceptable ear image for
registration. This requirement may impose a restriction on the use of ear biometrics in non
cooperative scenarios. (e.g. terrorist identification). Since the ear have a much small surface area
than the face, a small degree of head rotation may cause a significant displacement in the
captured ear image. Despite the fact that ear biometrics face the same intrinsic problem as face
biometrics, it does have its advantages over face. For instance, ear requires a smaller image size
under the same resolution , which may imply smaller computational load. Also, the ear has a
more uniform distribution of color and less variability with expressions . These attributes are
favorable for pattern recognition in general.

6.2 IRIS
In order to be less intrusive, the capturing device is usually placed far from the subject.
Added to the fact that the iris is much smaller than the ear, a high resolution camera is required
in order to acquire image of acceptable quality. Iris recognition also can fail when the subject
wear glasses.

6.3 FINGERPRINT
While ear biometrics requires the use of an ordinary CCD camera, fingerprint recognition
requires the use of specially designed sensors which maybe too expensive for large scale

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deployment. Unlike fingerprint recognition, [7]ear recognition is contact-less, which is less


intrusive and even essential for non-cooperative scenarios. This contact-less nature also reduces
the chance of wearing/damage of the capturing device. Although ridges and valleys of the
fingerprint are considered in feature extraction, the modeling of a fingerprint relies only on the
2D data captured. This is inherently different from ear, of which the 3D structure can be made
use of.

6.4 VOICE
The voice quality of the subject can[8] vary greatly with his health condition, while the
appearance of ear is almost invariant with respect to health. Voice recognition also suffers from
background noise.

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PRINCIPAL METHODS

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CHAPTER 7
PRINCIPAL METHODS

Although[10] ear recognition is a relatively new topic, researchers have already come up
with various approaches which drastically differ from each other in terms of acquisition, raw
data interpretation and feature extraction. Some of them are proved practice in the field of human
recognition (e.g. PCA, graph modal etc.), while some present a whole new perspective. In this
section, a brief introduction is given to each of these methods.

7.1 GRAPH MODEL

Burge and Burger were the first[9] to investigate the human ear as a biometric in the context
of machine vision. Inspired by the earlier work of Iannarelli , they conducted a proof of concept
study where the viability of the ear as a biometric was shown both theoretically in terms of the
uniqueness and measurability over time, and in practice through the implementation of a
computer vision based system. Each subject's ear was modeled as an adjacency graph built from
the Voronoi diagram of its Canny extracted curve segments. They devised a novel graph
matching algorithm for authentication which takes into account the erroneous curve segments
which can occur in the ear image due to changes such as lighting, shadowing, and occlusion.
They found that the features are robust and could be reliably extracted from a distance.

There are 5 stages in graph model. They are Acquisition, Localization, Edge Extraction,
Curve Extraction and Graph model.

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Acquisition

Localization

Edge Extraction

Curve Extraction

Graph Model

Figure 7.1.1 Block Diagram For Graph Model

1.Acquisition: A 300 by 500 grayscale[11] image is taken of the subject's head in profile using
a CCD camera. Next the location of the ear in the image must be found. Fortunately, a number of
techniques from face localization are applicable. Two particularly promising methods for still
images are the application of Iconic Filter Banks and Fischerface . When sequences of color
images are available then color and motion based segmentation can be used to locate the subject
before applying ear localization. Since our goal was to construct a proof of concept system, we
used a relatively simple method based on deformable contours.

2.Localization: The ear is located by using deformable contours on a Gaussian pyramid


representation of the image gradient.

3. Edge extraction: Edges are computed using the Canny operator and thresholding with
hysteresis using upper and lower thresholds of 46 and 20 (7.1.2(b)).

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4. Curve extraction: Edge relaxation is used to form larger curve segments, after which the
remaining small curve segments (i.e., length less than 10) are removed as is shown in 7.1.2(b).
We could attempt to[3] perform identification at this stage by trying to match features computed
from the extracted curves to those computed from the model. Differences in lighting and
positioning would render such a method very unreliable. What is needed is a description of the
relations between the curves in a way which is first invariant to affine transformations and
secondly invariant to small changes in the shape of the curves resulting from differences in
illumination. To achieve invariance under affine transformations, we turn to the neighboring
relation, and construct a Voronoi neighborhood graph of the curves and use it as our model.

5. Graph model: A generalized Voronoi diagram of the curves is built and a Neighborhood
graph is extracted (7.1.2(c)).

Using the above steps results in a high FRR due to variations in the graph models due to
underlying differences in the spatial relations of the extracted curves . To improve the FRR rate,
we first eliminate some of the erroneous curves and then develop a new matching process which
takes into account broken curves.

Error Correcting Graph Matching Algorithm


Let G(V,E) denote the graph model with each vertex V containing unary features of a curve
and edges E containing binary features between two neighboring curves. Matching is done by
searching for subgraph isomorphisms between the subject's stored graph Gs and the extracted
graph Gs'. If the distance d(Gs’,Gs) between them is less than the established acceptance
threshold t then identification is verified.

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Figure 7.1.2 Stages In Building Ear Biometric Graph Model

Voronoi diagram

The basic Voronoi diagram describes the areas that are nearest to a set of given points. These
can be viewed as zones of control[12], which can be used (for example) to help you find your
nearest supermarket. The partitioning of a plane with points into convex polygons such that
each polygon contains exactly one generating point and every point in a given polygon is closer
to its generating point than to any other. A Voronoi diagram is sometimes also known as
Dirichlet tessellation. The cells are called Dirichlet regions, Thiessen polytopes, or Voronoi
polygons.

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7.2 PRINCIPAL COMPONENT ANALYSIS


A major problem in mining scientific data sets is that the data is often high dimensional,
that is, for each object, there are a large number of features representing the object. When the
number of dimensions reaches hundreds or even thousands, the computational time for the
pattern recognition algorithms can become prohibitive. This can be a problem, especially when
some of the features are not discriminatory. [2] In addition to the computational cost, irrelevant
features may also cause a reduction in the accuracy of some algorithms. For example,
experiments with a decision tree classifier have shown that adding a random binary feature to
standard datasets can deteriorate the classification performance by 5 - 10%. Further, in many
pattern recognition tasks, the number of features represents the dimension of a search space - the
larger the number of features, greater the dimension of the search space, and harder the problem.

The high dimensionality of scientific datasets can also be a problem in storage and retrieval.
For example, cluster analysis is often used to improve the way in which the storage of the data is
organized. If the dataset has a high dimension, clustering can become a problem.

To address this problem of high dimensionality, a common approach is to identify the most
important features associated with an object so that further processing can be simplified without
compromising the quality of the final results. There are several different ways in which the
dimension of a problem can be reduced. The simplest approach is to identify important attributes
based on input from domain experts. Another commonly used approach is Principal Component
Analysis (PCA) which defines new attributes (principal components or PCs) as mutually-
orthogonal linear combinations of the original attributes. For many datasets, it is sufficient to
consider only the first few PCs, thus reducing the dimension. However, for some datasets, PCA
does not provide a satisfactory representation.

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Figure 7.2.1 A 3d Image Converted To 2d By PCA

7.2.1 PCA TRANSFORMATION

Principal component analysis (PCA) rotates the original data space such that the axes of the
new coordinate system point into the directions of highest variance of the data. The axes or new
variables are termed principal components (PCs) and are ordered by variance: The first
component, PC 1, represents the direction of the highest variance of the data. The direction of the
second component, PC 2, represents the highest of the remaining variance orthogonal to the first
component. This can be naturally extended to obtain the required number of components which
together span a component space covering the desired amount of variance.

Since components describe specific directions in the data space, each component depends by
certain amounts on each of the original variables: Each component is a linear combination of all
original variables.

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7.2.2 DIMENSIONALITY REDUCTION

Low variance can often be assumed to represent undesired background noise. The
dimensionality of the data can therefore be reduced, without loss of relevant information, by
extracting a lower dimensional component space covering the highest variance. Using a lower
number of principal components[13] instead of the high-dimensional original data is a common
pre-processing step that often improves results of subsequent analyses such as classification.
For visualization, the first and second component can be plotted against each other to obtain
a two-dimensional representation of the data that captures most of the variance (assumed to be
most of the relevant information), useful to analyze and interpret the structure of a data set.

7.2.3 MATRIX ALGEBRA

This section serves to provide a background for the matrix algebra required in PCA.
Specifically I will be looking at eigenvectors and eigenvalues of a given matrix.

Example 1

Example 2

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7.2.4 EIGEN VECTORS


As you know, you can multiply two matrices together, provided they are compatible sizes.
Eigenvectors are a special case of this. Consider the two multiplications between a matrix and a
vector in example1.

In the first example, the resulting vector is not an integer multiple of the original vector,
whereas in the second example, the example is exactly 4 times the vector we began with. Why is
this? Well, the vector is a vector in 2 dimensional space. The vector (from the second example
multiplication) represents an arrow pointing from the origin, (0,0) to the point (3,2) . The other
matrix, the square one, can be thought of as a transformation matrix. If you multiply this matrix
on the left of a vector, the answer is another vector that is transformed from it’s original position.

It is the nature of the transformation that the eigenvectors arise from. Imagine a
transformation matrix that, when multiplied on the left, reflected vectors in the line y=x. Then
you can see that if there were a vector that lay on the line y=x, it’s reflection it itself. This vector
(and all multiples of it, because it wouldn’t matter how long the vector was), would be an
eigenvector of that transformation matrix.

What properties do these eigenvectors have? You should first know that eigenvectors can
only be found for square matrices. And, not every square matrix has eigenvectors. And, given an
n*n matrix that does have eigenvectors, there are n of them. Given a 3*3 matrix, there are 3
eigenvectors.

Another property of eigenvectors is that even if I scale the vector by some amount before I
multiply it, I still get the same multiple of it as a result, as in example 2. This is because if you
scale a vector by some amount, all you are doing is making it longer, not changing it’s direction.
Lastly, all the eigenvectors of a matrix are perpendicular, ie. at right angles to each other, no
matter how many dimensions you have. By the way, another word for perpendicular, in maths
talk, is orthogonal. This is important because it means that you can express the data in terms of
these perpendicular eigenvectors, instead of expressing them in terms of the x and y axes.

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Another important thing to know is that when mathematicians find eigenvectors, they like to
find the eigenvectors whose length is exactly one. This is because, as you know, the length of a
vector doesn’t affect whether it’s an eigenvector or not, whereas the direction does. So, in order
to keep eigenvectors standard, whenever we find an eigenvector we usually scale it to make it
have a length of 1, so that all eigenvectors have the same length. Here’s a demonstration from
our example above.

7.2.5 EIGENVALUES
Eigenvalues are closely related to eigenvectors, in fact, we saw an eigenvalue in example1
Notice how, in both those examples, the amount by which the original vector was scaled after
multiplication by the square matrix was the same? In that example,the value was 4. 4 is the
eigenvalue associated with that eigenvector. No matter what multiple of the eigenvector we took
before we multiplied it by the square matrix, we would always get 4 times the scaled vector as
our result (as in example 2).
So you can see that eigenvectors and eigenvalues always come in pairs. When you get a fancy
programming library to calculate your eigenvectors for you, you usually get the eigenvalues as
well.

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ROW IMAGE TRAINING

PREPROCESSIN TESTING
G

NORMALIZATIO
RESULT
N

Figure 7.2.2 PCA Process

Principal component analysis (PCA, also known as “eigenfaces”), which is a


dimensionality-reduction technique in which variation in the dataset is preserved. The
classification is done in eigenspace, which is a lower dimension space defined by principal
components or the eigenvectors of the data set.
The process consists of three steps:
i) Preprocessing
ii) Normalization
iii) Identification

In the preprocessing step the ear images are cropped to a size of 400x500 pixels (face
images to 768x1024). Coordinates of two distinct points are supplied to the normalization
routine: Triangular Fossa and the Antitragus. The normalization step includes geometric
normalization, masking and photometric normalization. In this phase all the images are scaled to
a standard 130x150 size. Next all non-ear areas, like hair, background etc. are masked. Different

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levels of masking are experimented for finding the best one to get as good performance as
possible for the algorithm. Finally the images are normalized for illumination.

There are two phases in the identification phase: training and testing. In the training phase the
eigenvalues and eigenvectors of the training set are extracted and the eigenvectors are chosen
based on the top eigenvalues. Training set is a set of clean images without any duplicates. In the
testing phase the algorithm is provided a set of known ears and faces and a set of unknown ears
and faces as the probe set. The algorithm matches each probe to its possibly identity in the
gallery.

7.2.6 DRAWBACK OF EAR BIOMETRICS

The main drawback of ear biometrics is that they are not usable when the ear of the
subject is covered. In the case of active identification systems, this is not a drawback
as the subject can pull his hair back and proceed with the authentication process. The
problem arises during passive identification as in this case no assistance on the part of the subject
can be assumed.This problem can be solved with the help of a Thermogram Imagery.

7.3 THERMOGRAM IMAGERY

In the case of the ear being only partially [4]occluded by hair, it is possible to recognize the
hair and segment it out of the image. This can be done using texture and color segmentation, or
as we have implemented it, using thermogram images. A thermogram image is one in which the
surface heat (i.e., infrared light) of the subject is used to form an image. 7.3.1 is a thermogram of
the external ear. The subject’s hair in this case has an ambient temperature between 27.2 and
29.7 degrees Celsius, while the pinna (i.e., the external anatomy of the ear) ranges from 30.0 to
37.2 degrees Celsius. Removing partially occluding hair is done by segmenting out the low
temperature areas which lie within the pinna. The Meatus (i.e., the passage leading into the inner
ear) of the ear is easily localizable using the thermogram imagery. In a profile image of a subject,
if the ear is visible, then the Meatus will be the hottest part of the image, with an expected
8degree Celsius temperature differential between it and the surrounding hair. In Fig 7.3.1, the

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Meatus is the clearly visible section in the temperature range of 34.8 to 37.2 degrees Celsius. By
searching for this high temperature area, it is possible to detect and localize ears using
thermograms.

Electromagnetic spectral bands below the visible spectrum such as X-rays and ultraviolet
radiation are harmful to the human body and are therefore unsuitable for ear recognition
applications. The spectral bands above the visible spectrum, such as thermal IR imagery, has
been suggested as an alternative source of information for the case of face recognition and ear
recognition . The visual spectrum ranges from 0.4 to 0.7 microns, which is the range in which a
visual camera can measure the electromagnetic energy. The infrared spectrum comprises the
reected IR and the thermal IR wavebands. The thermal IR band is associated with thermal
radiation emitted by the objects. The amount of emitted radiation depends on both the
temperature and the emissivity of the material. There are two primary bands in the thermal IR
spectrum: the mid-wave infrared (MWIR) and long-wave infrared (LWIR). Between these bands
there is a strong atmospheric absorption band where imaging becomes extremely difficult. The
human body emits thermal radiation in both these bands of the thermal IR spectrum in which
thermal IR cameras can sense temperature variations at a distance. Thermograms can be
produced and presented in the form of heatmapped 2D images.

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Figure 7.3.1 Thermogram Of An Ear

7.3.1 ADVANTAGES OF THERMOGRAM IMAGERY


Since the light in the thermal IR range is emitted rather than reflected, there is no need for
light. Thermal emissions from [5] skin are an intrinsic property, independent of illumination.
Hence, the ear images captured by a thermal IR sensor will be invariant to changes in
illumination. So compared to the visible spectrum cameras, the infrared spectrum cameras have
the advantage of better performance under poor light conditions.
Burge and Burger proposed thermal imagery for overcoming the problem of hair occlusion ,
but this is not yet tested. Spoofing of biometrics based on visual imagery, can be, depending on
the system, possible by presenting a high resolution photo to the camera. A thermogram system
cannot be fooled by such an approach. Making a fake that generate a right heat emission pattern
is still not achieved (as far as the author know), and it will obviously be a difficult task because it
requires information of the heat emission of a person. So, thermal imagery used in biometrics
will also have the function as an anti-spoofing technique, providing liveness to the captured data.

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7.3.2 THERMOREGULATION: FACTORS AFFECTING THE


BODY TEMPERATURE
Thermoregulation is the process of keeping the body at a constant temperature, which
normally is about 37 degrees Celsius. There are certain factors or actions that will make the body
temperature deviate from what is normal.
Such factors are :
• Illness
• Physical activity
• Menstruation
• Day rhythm
• Environmental temperature
• Emotional variations
• Food and drink intake
• Time of day (related to activity and rest)

Due to these factors, the heat emission image from the body will vary. The body will always
try to keep the inner body temperature constant and reacts differently to hot and cold conditions.
The blood flow is one of the factors that is affected by the thermoregulation mechanisms. When
the body is cold, the blood is routed away from the skin and towards the warmer core of the
body, while when the body is warm the blood is routed towards the skin, thereby increasing heat
loss by radiation and conduction. These changes in the blood flow can also change the thermal
body image and consequently the ear image.

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OTHER DRAWBACKS

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CHAPTER 8
OTHER DRAWBACKS

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8.1 Examples of image pairs not used in the study

Victor et al. compared the performances of PCA when applied on face and ear recognition . In
their experiments, a total of 294 subjects were used. The number of images used in training was
207 for both ears and faces. Different gallery and probe sets were then used for evaluation of
performance. Factors such as time lighting, expression and time lapse between successive image
acquisitions were taken into account. Results showed that in all experiments, face-based
recognition gives better performance than ear-based recognition. A different conclusion was
reached, however, in similar experiments by Chang et al . It was found that there is no significant
difference between the face and the ear in terms of recognition performance. The quality of face
and ear images in the dataset is more rigorously controlled in the experiments reported in.
Images in which the face or ear was substantially obscured by hair or earring were dropped from
the study. Results suggested that the face and the ear might have similar value for biometric
recognition. In one experiment, the respective recognition rates were 70.5 percent and 71.6
percent. Another important finding is that bimodal recognition using both the ear and face results
offers statistically significant improvement over either individual biometric, for example, 90.9
percent in one experiment. The different conclusion reached by the two attempts maybe due to
quality of their data . The image data sets in the study by Victor et al. had less control over the

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variations such as earrings, hair over ears, etc(8.1). However, the results in that study might not
be biased so much if the goal was to reflect the average quality of images likely to be acquired in
real applications. Even though only a small number of images in the previous study exhibited
such quality control issues, these often resulted in misrecognition and, so, excluding them
effectively increases the measured performance for the ear biometric.

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CONCLUSION

CHAPTER 9
CONCLUSION

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The ear as a biometric is no longer in its infancy and it has shown encouraging progress so
far - which is improving, especially with the interest created by the recent research into its 3D
potential. It enjoys forensics support, it's structure appears individual, and it appears to have less
variance with age than other biometrics.

It is also most unusual, even unique, in that it supports not only visual recognition but also
acoustic recognition at the same time. This, together with its deep 3-dimensional structure will
make it very difficult to fake thus ensuring that the ear will occupy a special place in situations
requiring a high degree of protection against impersonation.

The all important question of “just how good is the ear as a biometric” has only begun to be
answered. The initial test results, even with quite small datasets, were disappointing, but now we
have regular reports of recognition rates in the high 90's on more sizeable datasets. But there is
clearly a need for much better intra-class testing, both in terms of the number of samples per
subject and of variability over time.

Most of the recent work has focused on the overall appearance or on the shape of the ear,
whether it be PCA, force field, or graph model, but it may prove profitable to further investigate
if different and particular parts of the ear are more important than others from a recognition
perspective. There is also a need to develop techniques with better invariance perhaps more
model based, and to seek out high speed recognition techniques to cope with the very large
datasets that are likely to be encountered in practice.

We must not forget that the inherent disadvantage of the occlusion of the ear by hair will
always be a problem, but even this might be ameliorated by the development of thermal imaging
schemes. But one thing is for certain, and that is that there are many questions to be answered, so
we can look forward to many interesting papers addressing these issues.

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GLOSSARY

GLOSSARY

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ATM - Automated Teller Machine


DNA - Deoxy Ribonucleic Acid
CCD - Charge Coupled Device
FRR - False Reject Rate
ID - Identity
IR - Infrared
LWIR - Long wave Infrared
MWIR - Mid-wave Infrared
PC - Principal Component
PCA - Principal Component Analysis
PIN - Personal Identification number

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REFERENCES

REFERENCES

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[1] EAR BIOMETRICS-Mark Burge and Wilhelm Burger, Johannes Kepler University
Linz, Austria {burge,burger}@cast.uni-linz.ac.at

[2] A tutorial on Principal Components Analysis-Lindsay I Smith February 26, 2002

[3] Biometric Solutions for Personal Identification -Tormod Emsell Larsen

[4] THE EAR AS A BIOMETRIC-D. J. Hurley, B. Arbab-Zavar, and M. S. Nixon


University of Southampton djh@analyticalengines.co.uk [baz05r|msn]@ecs.soton.ac.uk

[5] IEEE Transactions On Pattern Analysis And Machine Intelligence, Vol. 29, No. 8, August
2007 1297

[6] Recent Advances in Ear Biometrics-K.H. Pun, Y.S. Moon, Department of Computer
Science and Engineering, The Chinese University of Hong Kong, Shatin, Hong Kong

[7] http://www.vtk.org, 2006.

[8] A.E. Johnson, http://www-2.cs.cmu.edu/vmr/software/ meshtoolbox, 2004.

[9] M. Choras, “Further Developments in Geometrical Algorithms for Ear Biometrics,” Proc.
Fourth Int’l Conf. Articulated Motion and Deformable Objects, pp. 58-67, 2006.

[10] D. Cremers, “Statistical Shape Knowledge in Variational Image Segmentation,” PhD


dissertation, Dept. of Math. and Computer Science, Univ. of Mannheim, Germany, July
2002.

[11] C. Xu and J. Prince, “Snakes, Shapes, and Gradient Vector Flow,” IEEE Trans. Image
Processing, vol. 7, pp. 359-369, 1998.

[12] www.wikipedia.org

[13] Curve Extraction Using Genetic Algorithm Based on Closeness and Continuity in
Perceptive Grouping Factors- Fumihiko Saitoh

[14] EAR BIOMETRICS -Hanna-Kaisa Lammi , Lappeenranta University of Technology,


Department of Information Technology

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