Various edge detectors have been proposed as well as several different types of adaptive edge detectors, but the performance of many of these edge detectors depends on the features and the noise present in the grayscale image. Attempts have been made to extend edge detection to color images by applying grayscale edge detection methods to each of the individual red, blue, and green color components as well as to the hue, saturation, and intensity color components of the color image. The modulus 2(pi) nature of the hue color component makes its detection difficult. For example, a hue of 0 and 2(pi) yields the same color tint. Normal edge detection of a color image containing adjacent pixels with hue of 0 and 2(pi) could yield the presence of an edge when an edge is really not present. This paper presents a method of mapping the 2(pi) modulus hue space to a linear space enabling the edge detection of the hue color component using the Sobel edge detector. The results of this algorithm are compared against the edge detection methods using the red, blue, and green color components. By combining the hue edge image with the intensity and saturation edge images, more edge information is observed.© (1995) COPYRIGHT SPIE--The International Society for Optical Engineering. Downloading of the abstract is permitted for personal use only.