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<p><b>Abstract</b>—A critical step in automatic fingerprint matching is to automatically and reliably extract minutiae from the input fingerprint images. However, the performance of a minutiae extraction algorithm relies heavily on the quality of the input fingerprint images. In order to ensure that the performance of an automatic fingerprint identification/verification system will be robust with respect to the quality of input fingerprint images, it is essential to incorporate a fingerprint enhancement algorithm in the minutiae extraction module. We present a fast fingerprint enhancement algorithm, which can adaptively improve the clarity of ridge and valley structures of input fingerprint images based on the estimated local ridge orientation and frequency. We have evaluated the performance of the image enhancement algorithm using the goodness index of the extracted minutiae and the accuracy of an online fingerprint verification system. Experimental results show that incorporating the enhancement algorithm improves both the goodness index and the verification accuracy.</p>
Biometrics, fingerprint, minutiae, enhancement, Gabor filters, performance evaluation.

L. Hong, A. Jain and Y. Wan, "Fingerprint Image Enhancement: Algorithm and Performance Evaluation," in IEEE Transactions on Pattern Analysis & Machine Intelligence, vol. 20, no. , pp. 777-789, 1998.
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