Full Content is available to subscribers

Subscribe/Learn More  >
Proceedings Article

Compression and progressive transmission of astronomical images

[+] Author Affiliations
Richard L. White

Space Telescope Science Institute (USA)

Jeffrey W. Percival

Univ. of Wisconsin/Madison (USA)

Proc. SPIE 2199, Advanced Technology Optical Telescopes V, 703 (June 1, 1994); doi:10.1117/12.176239
Text Size: A A A
From Conference Volume 2199

  • Advanced Technology Optical Telescopes V
  • Larry M. Stepp
  • Kailua, Kona, HI | March 13, 1994


An image compression algorithm has ben developed that is well-suited to astronomical images. The method has 3 steps: an intensity mapping to generate an image that has roughly constant noise in each pixel, an orthonormal wavelet transform, and quadtree coding of the bit-planes of the wavelet coefficients. The quadtree values may be further compressed by an standard compression technique, such as Huffman or arithmetic coding. If the 2D Haar transform is used, the calculations can be carried out using integer arithmetic, and the method can be used for both lossy and lossless compression. The Haar transform basis functions are well-suited to most astronomical images because they are highly localized. The performance of the algorithm using smoother, longer range wavelets is also shown; they can give slightly better lossy compression at the cost of an increase in artifacts around point sources, but they are not effective for lossless compression using this scheme. This technique has also been used as the basis of a progressive image transmission system that can be used for either remote observing or access to remote image archives. After less than 1% of the data have been received, the image is visually similar to the original, so it is possible to assess the quality of images very quickly. If necessary, the entire compressed data set can be sent so that the original image is recovered exactly.

© (1994) COPYRIGHT SPIE--The International Society for Optical Engineering. Downloading of the abstract is permitted for personal use only.

Richard L. White and Jeffrey W. Percival
"Compression and progressive transmission of astronomical images", Proc. SPIE 2199, Advanced Technology Optical Telescopes V, 703 (June 1, 1994); doi:10.1117/12.176239; http://dx.doi.org/10.1117/12.176239

Access This Article
Sign In to Access Full Content
Please Wait... Processing your request... Please Wait.
Sign in or Create a personal account to Buy this article ($15 for members, $18 for non-members).



Citing articles are presented as examples only. In non-demo SCM6 implementation, integration with CrossRef’s "Cited By" API will populate this tab (http://www.crossref.org/citedby.html).

Some tools below are only available to our subscribers or users with an online account.

Related Content

Customize your page view by dragging & repositioning the boxes below.

Related Book Chapters

Topic Collections


Buy this article ($18 for members, $25 for non-members).
Sign In