Purdue University Graduate School
An Examination of Post-Mortem Human Iris Recognition.pdf (2.96 MB)

An Examination of Post-Mortem Human Iris Recognition

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posted on 2019-12-11, 13:47 authored by Joseph A ZwengJoseph A Zweng
This research focused on the evaluation of iris recognition on post-mortem subjects. It was to determine if iris image captures were suitable from post-mortem subjects and if the captures contained the features required to be used in recognition scenarios. One commercially available iris camera was used, the IriShield USB MK2120U. In order to complete this research, it was first necessary to obtain images from subjects that contain the proper features, including sharpness, pupil size, and image quality. The images were captured during three different conditions that would be possible to find under real-world circumstances. The first condition was as the decedent came into the coroner’s office before the vitreous fluid was sampled from the eyes. The second condition was after the vitreous fluid was sampled from the deceased. Sampling vitreous fluid is a common autopsy procedure. This second condition would also be similar to a subject with a punctured eye. The third condition was after replacing the volume of vitreous fluid with saline solution. Replacing the vitreous with saline restored the round shape to the eye. This study found that high quality images can be captured from a post-mortem eye and that matching images across conditions results in positive identification.


Degree Type

  • Master of Science


  • Computer and Information Technology

Campus location

  • West Lafayette

Advisor/Supervisor/Committee Chair

Dr. Stephen J. Elliott

Advisor/Supervisor/Committee co-chair

Dr. Kathryn C. Seigfreid-Spellar

Additional Committee Member 2

Kevin J. O'Connor

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