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WVU faculty member edits book on face recognition

Portrait of Thirimachos Bourlai

Thirimachos Bourlai.

West Virginia  University’s Thirimachos Bourlai, assistant professor of computer science and electrical engineering, recently edited a textbook on the major operational problems and current solutions in the area of human identification through the use of biometrics.


Biometrics refers to technologies that measure and analyze human body characteristics, including face, fingerprints and irises, to identify people.

“Face Recognition Across the Imaging Spectrum” is a comprehensive review of algorithms and techniques for face recognition, with an emphasis on systems that can be reliably used in operational environments. Insights are provided by an international team of pre-eminent experts into the processing of multispectral and hyperspectral face images captured under uncontrolled environments. A range of different biometric modalities are also examined, including face, periocular and iris.

According to Bourlai, there were two factors driving the book’s creation.

“The first factor is the need for the development of efficient multispectral facial recognition or FR-related algorithms and systems that can be reliably used in operational environments,” Bourlai said. “The second factor is the recent increased interest in research on face recognition-related technologies and the recent advances in computer vision, pattern recognition and automated analysis when using images of different biometric modalities from various parts of the imaging spectrum. These factors helped us to find extraordinary researchers in the greater field of face recognition that could contribute chapters to the book.”

An expert in biometrics and face recognition, Bourlai is the founder and director of WVU's Multi-Spectral Imagery Lab. The MILab has participated in biometrics and deception detection-related research projects funded by various sponsors, including the Center for Identification Technology Research, a National Science Foundation Industry/University Cooperative Research Center founded at WVU; the U.S. Department of Defense-Office of Naval Research; TechConnectWV; and the FBI.

The book, Bourlai’s first, is being published by Springer International Publishing. It is expected to be available in the first quarter of 2016.



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