Back to Volume
Paper: A FITS Image Compression Proposal
Volume: 216, Astronomical Data Analysis Software and Systems IX
Page: 551
Authors: Pence, W.; White, R. L.; Greenfield, P.; Tody, D.
Abstract: We have developed a general technique for storing compressed images in FITS binary tables. The image is first divided into one or more rectangular sub-images or tiles, then each tile is compressed and the resulting byte stream is stored in a variable length row of a binary table. By dividing the image into tiles it is possible to extract and uncompress subsections of the image without the expense of uncompressing the whole image. Several commonly used algorithms for compressing the image tiles will be supported initially, and in principle, support for any other compression algorithm may be added later. We are in the process of making trial implementations of this technique within the IRAF image kernel and within the CFITSIO subroutine library for accessing FITS files. Once completed, these implementations will allow application programs to transparently read (and perhaps write) compressed images without needing any knowledge about the compression algorithm.
Back to Volume