Technology Transfer SSC Pacific
Adaptive Linear Filter (ALF)

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A filter for real-time video and still imagery that improves visibility through adverse conditions such as thick fog, smoke, and darkness.

The U.S. Navy seeks to commercialize U.S. patents 8,023,760 (System and method for enhancing low-visibility imagery) and 8,149,245 (Adaptive linear contrast method for enhancement of low-visibility imagery).


Current vision systems allow users to see up to three times farther in some sub-visibility conditions (smog, dust, smoke, snow, and darkness), providing enhanced real-time views of the surrounding terrain. Such systems are based on  video technology and are primarily used for security and surveillance applications on land, sea, and aerial vehicles. While helpful, these systems cannot penetrate  thick fog and smoke, brown-out conditions caused by dust, and other adverse conditions that compromise user safety and security.

The Technology

SSC Pacific has developed the Adaptive Linear Filter (ALF), an image processing algorithm that uses adaptive image adjustment techniques to filter real-time video and still imagery. By breaking the image into sub-images and analyzing and enhancing each sub-image, ALF produces greater overall image contrast and detail, enhancing images with contrast levels below 2% to levels above 60%. ALF has been extensively tested in various conditions including thick fog, low light (nighttime), and brown-out conditions, resulting in superior images over current market solutions. ALF is suitable for a variety of applications in both professional and consumer imaging and camera markets.

Key Benefits

  • Filters real-time/off-line monochrome, & off-line color video (640x480, 30fps)
  • Filters monochrome and color still imagery
  • For aviation, transforms a CAT III precision approach to CAT I
  • Compatible with a variety of cameras, including analog and digital infrared
  • Can be integrated into existing software and hardware
  • For use in vision systems for aircraft, ground vehicles, and ships; security and surveillance systems; underwater environments; still imaging software (a Photoshop plug-in exists); video editing software; consumer cameras; etc.
  • Development Status

  • U.S. patents issued: 8,023,760,  8,149,245
  • Total R&D: $5M and 6 years
  • DoD 5000 Series Technology Readiness Level 6: System/subsystem model or prototype demonstration in a relevant environment
  • Currently in development to process real-time color video
  • Sample video and still images available for review
  • For more information on technology transfer, please contact us at (619) 5535118 or email  
    SD 972, July 2011. SSC Pacific, San Diego, CA 921525001. Approved for public release; distribution is unlimited.

    SSC Pacific
    Updated: 8/12/2014 3:35 PM EST   Published