Single image marine snow removal based on a supervised median filtering scheme
Underwater image processing has attracted a lot of attention due to the special difficulties at capturing clean and high quality images in this medium. Blur, haze, low contrast and color cast are the main degradations. In an underwater image noise is mostly considered as an additive noise (e.g. sensor noise), although the visibility of underwater scenes is distorted by another source, termed marine snow. This signal disturbs image processing methods such as enhancement and segmentation. Therefore removing marine snow can improve image visibility while helping advanced image processing approaches such as background subtraction to yield better results. In this article, we propose a simple but effective filter to eliminate these particles from single underwater images. It consists of different steps which adapt the filter to fit the characteristics of marine snow the best. Our experimental results show the success of our algorithm at outperforming the existing approaches by effectively removing this phenomenon and preserving the edges as much as possible.