Electronic Light Table (ELT) imaging software for UNIX workstations
- Can create and Roam any size image including those larger than 64k x 64k
- Direct support for images > 2GB
- Full time image Mensuration including integration with NGA Ruler
- True 16-Bit processing
- Software Roam with directed search area capability
- NITFS 2.0/2.1 Level 7
- IPL/PPS/OPS/NGA Library client
- Direct TFRD ingestion
- Stereo viewing capability in either split screen mono or true stereo.
- Image chain analysis approved look-up table controls for various national sensors
- Image chain analysis approved filters including: sharpen, blur and edge detection filters for E/O, I/R and Radar
- Intuitive Annotation capability including: lines, polylines, polygons, circles, rectangles, icons and text
- Automatic north arrow
- Native NITF Processing
- Label and auto-count Icons
- GSD support with graphic report (USMTF) read/write
- SHAPEFILE support
- Vector Product Format (VPF) support
- Integrated with NGA hardcopy look-up tables for enhanced quality prints
- Image comparison capabilities for dual image display with locked roam and flicker
- Image registration and auto mosaicking
- Waterfall display Screener
- Modular architecture, including programmer’s interface toolkit
VITec Electronic Light Table (ELT) imaging software allows users to quickly input, roam, annotate, manipulate, and output images from photographs, film, satellite images, maps, charts, and other real world data.
Images are loaded through the VITec VCT or by filename/icons of the actual images. Once loaded, the chip functionality within VITec ELT allows users to cut out and resize the image. Also, users can create image chips of the main image, reduced resolution data sets of the main image, or, they can crop the main image, deleting unnecessary border areas.
VITec ELT incorporates a robust set of enhancement tools. Experienced users can execute interactive histogram adjustments by altering the tonal transfer curve. For less advanced users, VITec ELT offers brightness, contrast, and saturation sliders, to perform interactive histogram modifications. VITec ELT also has sliders for haze and glare reduction. Additionally, VITec ELT employs a series of Look-Up-Table algorithms, such as histogram equalization, maximum contrast, standard deviations, false coloring, and various pre-computed thresholds, for quick and easy image enhancements. VITec ELT contains hundreds of filters for image sharpening, smoothing, noise reduction, and edge detection. All of the enhancement functionality within VITec ELT may be performed on the entire image, or on any arbitrary region of interest (ROI).
The annotation capabilities of VITec ELT are the most robust in the industry. Users can add, edit or overlay text, icons and graphics on the image with this tool, and then manipulate the annotations independent from the underlying image. Users can interactively rotate and scale text without fear of aliasing, due to the publishing font generator included with the package. Annotation may be saved with the image or saved as a separate annotation file. By saving annotation in separate files, users can recall previous target graphics on top of newly acquired imagery, without going through the manual process of re-drawing each piece of annotation.
Also, VITec ELT has a defined UNIX interface which allows the transfer of images from a database management system (DBMS), enabling easy integration into the existing work environment.
Add, edit or overlay text, icons, and graphics on the image with this robust and flexible tool. Manipulate the annotations independent from the underlying image. Interactively rotate and scale text and icons, or move from one location to another. Save annotations with the image or separately.
- Text – Postscript, TrueType, OpenType fonts
- Text options – color background, color text, scaleable
- Lines – solid and pattern lines
- Circles – filled or unfilled
- Arcs – filled or unfilled
- Squares / Polygons – filled or unfilled
- Freehand draw
- North Arrow
- Template / production friskets
- Layout tool
- Icon Support -FM 101-5 Icons or create custom icons
- Annotation layers
- GSD (MILSTD 2525B)
- Overlay or burn in annotations
- Load or create shapefiles
Chip or resize the entire image or a region of interest. Chips may be made in pixels or numerous dimension measurements. Chips may also be scaled with the same flexibility.
- Chip Size – Select Width and Height or Radius
- Chip Size – Select Size in pixels or measurement
- Chip Size – Create or modify chip by bounding box
- Output Scale – Select pixel size or scale factor
- Customizable predefined sizes and scales
- Target – place location markers and move between them
- Apply – Create a new image and close the current
- Show Chip – Display the entire chip in the ELT work area
- Batch – Create a new image and keep current image loaded
The Image Compare tool allows change detection and comparison of two images. Image sources can be of any type, allowing comparison of two images taken on different days, or any combination of visual, SAR, IR or map imagery. Images can be locked roamed (either side by side, or top and bottom), flickered, and merged. Images can also be laid one on top of another, and a porthole cut out of the top image for viewing down into the bottom image, similar to an image swipe. Pixels from one image may be "Rubbed" into the second image using the Rub-Thru tool.
- View – Side by Side or Top / Bottom
- LUT – Apply a LUT to balance the image appearance
- Register – Quick single point shift of the images
- Overview – Toggle overview image display
- Flicker – Show alternating images to emphasize change
- Merge – Combine the images into a single image
- Porthole – Cut a hole from the top image to the bottom
- Rubthrough – Rub pixels from the bottom image to the top
Cut out portions of the image or cut an entire image and incorporate into the source image or a different image, optionally creating outline boxes. Allows maps to be added to images and vice versa.
- Cut items as predefined shapes, freehand or entire image
- Change the scale of the cut object
- Add a border to the cut object if desired
- The contents of the cut buffer are shown in the panel.
- Once pasted, the inset image is now an annotation object that can be moved or resized as required in Annotate.
- Entire images may also be cut in Load mode.
Execute interactive histogram adjustments, region-of-interest (ROI) processing, look-up-table (LUT) modifications and digital filtering. Create an unlimited number of arbitrary ROIs for selective image enhancement and manipulate them before applying to the source image.
In addition, VITec has incorporated the ICA (Image Chain Analysis) LUTs, and Filters for proper national image display.
- Apply Filters and Look Up Tables (LUTs) to images
- ROI (Region of interest) or entire image
- Sharpness including ICA sharpness families
- Smooth filters to eliminate motion in video frame grabs
- Edge detection with directional emphasis
- Ability to add custom filters
- Remapping controls for > 8-bit images
- Histogram with manual adjustment
- Sliders for Brightness, Contrast and Saturation
- Sliders for Haze and Glare
- Ability to add custom LUTs
- DRA (Dynamic Range Adjustment)
- Apply default Filter or Lut to images if desired
- Separate controls for independently adjusting bands of color images.
- Convert grayscale images to color or color to grayscale
- Adjustments made in the enhance tool are never applied to the original image. Changes that are made such as sharpening the display are shown on the screen, but are not part of the image until the "Apply" button is pressed. Once the "Apply" button is pressed, a copy of the image is made and the adjustments made in enhance are added to the new image.
The Spectral Exploitation Tool (SET), developed by Photon Research Associates, Inc., works in cooperation with ELT to provide access to multispectral and hyperspectral data. It includes tools to perform image display/enhancement, spectral analysis and integration of user algorithms for manipulation of data.
The VITec ELT – Spectral Exploitation Tool reads data from SYERS/P3I data, LANDSAT, SPOT, GEOTIFF, as well as several user defined formats. We are currently investigating the NITFS 2.1 MSI extensions.
Current Spectral Exploitation Tool Capabilities
Spectral Angle Detector
Locates materials in multi / hyperspectral images which are spectrally similar to a selected sample. This is used, for instance, to find other examples of a target paint given one sample.
Spectral Angle Material Classification
Supervised classification to segment an image into a set of similar materials based upon samples, creating, for example, a terrain categorization (TERCAT) map.
Spectral Signature Display
Allows the user to interactively read-out and plot the spectral signature (measured data for each spectral band for each pixel) for any object or material in a spectral image.
Principal Components Transform
Transformation of spectral data so that the spectral bands are “packed” and ranked with the information content in the data – this transformation increases the ability of the analyst to easily extract intelligence from difficult to interpret data. The analyst can also display lower rank principal components that often enhance rare, difficult to locate objects such as CC&D targets.
Spectral Matched Filter (SMF)
Optimal filtering operation which helps to differentiate target materials in spectral data. Similar to spectral angle search above, but more effective in many situations.
Reed – X. Yu (RX) Spectral Anomaly Detector
Unsupervised algorithm which is used to find “spectral anomalies” in data – these anomalies are often rare, spectrally unique, materials such as target coatings.
Features Planned For the Next Version
- Unsupervised Clustering – This algorithm performs unsupervised classification of spectral data allowing TERCAT maps to be generated without the
necessity for an analyst to take spectral samples of material categories.
- Spectral Library Support – Allows the analyst to save and re-use spectral samples that have been previously saved in a “library” of samples. These
will be stored in an analyst defined tree structure similar to a computer file and directory tree. Archived spectral samples will be available to all of the
algorithms which use training data.
- Spectral Assistant – This function provides the analyst with an “expert opinion” regarding the nature of a material found in the spectral data. The user
selects a spectral sample which is automatically compared to the library of spectral data described above; the result is a ranked set of estimates of the most
- Morphological Operators – These are filtering operations which are used in conjunction with the target detection algorithms listed above in order to
filter out detections which are larger or smaller than a known target size, reducing analyst workload.
- SMF – Cluster Anomaly Detector – This is a high-performance algorithm that uses spectral clustering and a locally applied matched filter to locate either
spectral anomalies or pre-identified target search spectra in spectral data. The application is similar to the RX or matched filter search algorithms but with
The VITec ELT Input/Output module supports any postscript printer and numerous GPIB and SCSI scanner devices. In addition, the VITec ELT Print module incorporates NGA’s printer look-up-tables for the Kodak, Canon, and HP printers. These look-up-tables match the hardcopy output to the color values on the screen, providing a “what you see is what you get” capability for hardcopy outputs.
- Support for standard and large format printers
- Print preview display
- Create custom printer settings
- Supports all postscript printers
Load by image file name (File > Open) or icons (Browse) of the actual image, from a variety of sources. Browse easily through stored icons of images to locate specific images.
- VCT – Visual Coverage Tool
- NITF – National Imagery Transmission Format
- TFRD – TFRD formatted image
- Select images by thumbnails or text listing
- Dir/Directory – Access to frequently used locations
- Previous Loaded – Listing of images previously loaded
- Files – Long listing of the current directory
- Load – Load the selected image
- Cut – Cut the currently selected image to Cut/Paste
- Refresh – Update the current directory listing
- Add new directories (folders)
- Remove – Delete the currently selected image
The VITec ELT-Mensurate module is a Graphical User Interface which provides a point and click measurement capability for use in exploitation of various imagery types. This module allows mensuration for all sensors modeled by the GOTS Ruler software. The ELT-Mensurate module also performs mensuration on all NITFs format imagery not modeled by the Ruler software. In addition, this module supports third party mensuration engines for other sensors. Other engines can be added to VITec ELT by simply adding a run-time loadable mensuration engine which models additional sensors.
- Measure objects by drawing on image.
- Add names to mensuration objects
- Center – show the mensuration object in the center of the workspace
- Calculate – send the selected mensuration object to the mensuration engine.
- Delete – remove the currently selected item
The Measured Ellipse Tool allows for the drawing of ground truth circles and ellipses. Ground truth circles are drawn with a defined radius and ellipses are drawn with a defined semi-major axis, semi-minor axis and orientation angle. The measured ellipse may be drawn with Center Crosshairs and/or Center Coordinate Text.
- Center – The text area displays the center location at which the measured ellipse will be centered.
- Distance Units – The Distance Units selection toggle allows for the units selection for the measured ellipse.
- Circle – Select Circle to draw a ground truth circle with a defined radius. The radius will be calculated using the selected distance units and the value specified in the text field.
- Ellipse – Select Ellipse to draw an ellipse with defined axis lengths.
- Draw Center Crosshairs – Select “Draw Center Crosshairs” to draw the center crosshairs for the ellipse when it is drawn. The crosshairs will have the same line size and color as the ellipse. The crosshair is permanently grouped with the ellipse and cannot be separated from the ellipse once it is drawn.
- Draw Center Coordinate Text – Select “Draw Center Coordinate Text” to draw the center coordinates of the ellipse when it is drawn. The text is permanently grouped with the ellipse and cannot be separated from the ellipse once it is drawn.
- Place Ellipse – This button is used to draw the ellipse onto the image. The ellipse will be centered on the location specified in the Center Text Field.
The VITec ELT Mosaic /Rectification module allows users to stitch together an infinite number of smaller images into one large scene with Quick Fit Mosaic, orthorectify a single image or create a feathered seamless mosaic.
Note: Quick Fit Mosaic uses the vci file format for large scenes that exceed the limitations of the host operating system.
- Quick Fit – Select files and submit
- Preview mosaics before creation
- Quick Fit – first image selected is the reference image.
- Seamless Mosaic / ATE (Automatic Terrain Extraction) Based on SOCET SET
- Rectify Image – orthorectify a single image. Based on SOCET SET
The VITec ELT NITF module provides a bridge to NITF, allowing NITF files to be loaded and saved. The module is NITF certified 2.0, 2.1 (NSIF 1.0), and fully compatible with up to level 7 data. In addition, VITec ELT NITF now comes with a new SDE reader which supports several of the currently defined SDE’s. The VITec ELT NITF module is also expandable by users and integrators, so that new/private SDE’s can be processed. VITec ELT now also supplies a SPIA tag tool that has been integrated into the NITF save process.
- NITF 1.1, 2.0, 2.1 and NSIF 1.0
- Level 99 support for NITF 2.0
- Background NITF unpacking / packing available
- All SDEs are retained with the image
- Easy default setting of common header items
Cut out portions of the image or cut an entire image and incorporate into the source image or a different image, optionally creating outline boxes. Allows maps to be added to images and vice versa.
- Airbrush tool
- Control brush size, opacity and roundness
- Select color from current image or choose a color
- Simply paint or add, subtract or delete from current pixel values
- Multiple levels of “Undo”
- “Apply” creates a new working image, original image is never changed.
The VITec ELT Register module allows tactical users to warp or rubbersheet aerial reconnaissance images to maps (ADRG’s) or other images and to quickly determine estimates of ground locations and their coordinate points on the image. As the two images are interactively merged, a single window on the screen shows the combined features of both: the satellite or aerial reconnaissance image along with the map’s latitude and longitude or universal transverse (UTM) grid coordinates. After loading the images into the module, the user is able to quickly pick features common to both images (roads, intersections,
forest boundaries, etc.) and use them as control points to warp or register one image to the other.
- Two Modes: Register a single image or one image to a second
- Up to 16 points or Third Order Warp (minimum 3 points)
- Enter coordinates in Lat/Long, UTM or MGRS
- Select from 10 predefined Ellipsoids or add your own
- Merge or Flicker images to validate registration
- Overview and close up displayed simultaneously to assist with rapid common point selection.
The ELT-Roam module expands the capabilities of VITec ELT to provide fast, smooth, flicker-free, tear-free roam and pan of extremely large images. With VITec ELT-Roam, users can ingest full frame national imagery, smoothly roam images at full resolution, conduct broad area searches at user defined rates, drop markers to target additional analysis, and create any size chips on the fly. This module allows users to perform Directed Search Areas of any direction or dimension. VITec ELT-Roam delivers the perfect low cost solution for IDEX class exploitation while dramatically reducing operation and maintenance costs.
- Search images horizontally or vertically, using mouse control or along a user defined path
- 8 speed search control from slow to study detailed areas to high to rapidly scan large areas
- Looking Glass function to rapidly get a detailed view
- "Snail-Trail" marking of already viewed areas
Write imagery in a variety of the file formats (Sun Raster, TIFF (GEO-TIFF), PostScript, NITFS, GIF, JPEG, etc.) to disk, printers, databases or other output devices.
- Save the entire loaded image or just the display area.
- Save images as 8 or 16-bit grayscale or 24-bit color.
- Annotations may be burned in, saved as a separate file or saved as a annotation template.
- Save images as NITF, VITec, Sun Raster, TIFF (GEOTIFF), JPEG, GIF, XWD and Frame Image (Adobe Framemaker).
- Edit or create SPIA tags directly from the File tab of the NITF Save window.
The VITec ELT – Screener module allows users to waterfall, mosaic, and chip imagery from a series of image strips. The reduced resolution image strips fed into this package (typically in NITF format) are mosaicked based on GeoCoordinate information, and are displayed using a waterfall approach. The ELT – Screener module then produces a full resolution composited image chip (in the background) when users select target scenes from the reduced mosaicked scene. This chip is automatically sent to the VITec SITA (Selected Image Target Area) application for further exploitation, annotation and product generation. The ELT – Screener module also has the ability to display spot data.
- Displays a 10 to 1 reduction in the Screener window
- Quick zoom to look at details
- Continuous location information, current strip data and status of the Screener displayed.
- Use a right mouse click and drag to select an area for chipping.
- VITec SITA – customized ELT window for Screener exploitation, production and dissemination.
- Screener and VITec SITA are customizable tools for third-party integrators.
The VITec ELT TFRD module allows users to load TFRD images into VITec ELT. TFRD 1.3, 2.3 and 4.3 are supported.
The VITec ELT applications programmers toolkit allows third parties to integrate VITec ELT into the existing work environment. The toolkit also allows engineers to create their own filters and look-up-tables, for ease of integration into VITec ELT. Engineers can also pass commands to VITec ELT that mimic almost every button a user can press. This allows a background process to control VITec ELT, meaning automated image processing for the user.