Weibull Tone Mapping (WTM) for the enhancement of underwater imagery

Chloe Amanda Game (Lead Author), Michael Barry Thompson, Graham David Finlayson

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Domain experts prefer interactive and targeted control-point tone mapping operations (TMOs) to enhance underwater image quality and feature visibility; though this comes at the expense of time and training. In this paper, we provide end-users with a simpler and faster interactive tone-mapping approach. This is built upon Weibull Tone Mapping (WTM) theory; introduced in previous work as a preferred tool to describe and improve domain expert TMOs. We allow end-users to easily shape brightness distributions according to the Weibull distribution, using two parameter sliders which modify the distribution peak and spread. Our experiments showed that 10 domain experts found the two-slider Weibull manipulation sufficed to make a desired adjustment in >80% of images in a large dataset. For the remaining ∼20%, observers opted for a control-point TMO which can, broadly, encompass many global tone mapping algorithms. Importantly, 91% of these control-point TMOs can actually be visually well-approximated by our Weibull slider manipulation, despite users not identifying slider parameters themselves. Our work stresses the benefit of the Weibull distribution and significance of image purpose in underwater image enhancement.
Original languageEnglish
Article number3533
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2023


  • underwater image enhancement
  • tone mapping
  • histogram specification
  • Weibull distribution

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