Near-infrared (NIR) images are very useful in many image processing applications, including banknote recognition, vein detection, and surveillance, to name a few. To acquire the NIR image together with visible range signals, an imaging device should be able to simultaneously capture NIR and visible range images. An implementation of such a system having separate sensors for NIR and visible light has practical shortcomings due to its size and hardware cost. To overcome this, a single sensor-based acquisition method is investigated in this paper. The proposed imaging system is equipped with a conventional color filter array of cyan, magenta, yellow, and green, and achieves signal separation by applying a proposed separation matrix which is derived by mathematical modeling of the signal acquisition structure. The elements of the separation matrix are calculated through color space conversion and experimental data. Subsequently, an additional denoising process is implemented to enhance the quality of the separated images. Experimental results show that the proposed method successfully separates the acquired mixed image of visible and near-infrared signals into individual red, green, and blue (RGB) and NIR images. The separation performance of the proposed method is compared to that of related work in terms of the average peak-signal-to-noise-ratio (PSNR) and color distance. The proposed method attains average PSNR value of 37.04 and 33.29 dB, respectively for the separated RGB and NIR images, which is respectively 6.72 and 2.55 dB higher than the work used for comparison.
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