A mathematical morphology approach to the characterization of astronomical objects

Alcione Jandir CandeasUlisses de Mendonça Braga NetoEdson Costa de Barros Carvalho Filho

We deal in this work with a broadly studied topic in astronomical imaging, namely the star/galaxy discrimination problem. Through the use of Mathematical Morphology, we propose an original approach to the characterization of these astronomical objects, which is based on gray-level shape information. The main steps in our method are image pre-processing, segmentation and feature extraction, all of which employ Mathematical Morphology tools that were implemented using the MMach toolbox for the Khoros system. We present a comparison between our segmentation results, based on the watershed method, and those of a classical software package SExtractor. The shape information is extracted through the use of the gray-level morphological pattern spectrum, which yields very satisfactory shape features, that promise to be very suitable for future work in neural-network automatic classification.

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