Raster to Vector Conversion of Images
for Efficient SVG Representation

Lakshman Prasad, Alexei N. Skourikhine
Los Alamos National Laboratory
Los Alamos, NM 87545, U. S. A.
prasad@lanl.gov
alexei@lanl.gov

ABSTRACT

We present an efficient and general algorithm for converting a raster image comprised of
pixels into a vector image comprised of polygons in SVG format. This conversion results
in a high quality vector image with an average compression of about 1:3 for JPEG raster
images. The polygons constituting the vector images not only support the visual quality
of the image, but are also faithful to the image structures and may be used to detect,
extract, and annotate features of interest from the SVG representation directly.

The method is based on the extraction of edge features from raster images, and subsequent
simultaneous completion of extracted edges as well as reconstruction of smooth regions of
uniform color. This is achieved by algorithmically modeling principles of visual perceptual
organization as a set of filters on an adaptive triangular mesh of the extracted edge set.
The filters may be modified to obtain different qualities of vectorization as well as
adapted to suit different classes of imagery.