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Open Access Investigation of the effect of pupil diameter on visual acuity using a neuro-physiological model of the human eye

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Human visual acuity strongly depends on environmental conditions. One of the most important physical parameters affecting its value is the pupil diameter, which follows changes in the surrounding illumination by adaptation. Thus, the direct measurement of its influence on visual performance would require either medicaments or inconvenient apertures placed in front of the subjects? eyes to examine different pupil sizes, so it has not been studied in detail yet. In order to analyze this effect directly, without any external intervention, we accomplished simulations by our complex neuro-physiological vision model. It considers subjects as ideal observers limited by optical and neural filtering, as well as neural noise, and represents character recognition by templatematching. Using the model, we reconstructed the monocular visual acuity of real subjects with optical filtering calculated from the measured wavefront aberration of their eyes. According to our simulations, 1 mm alteration in the pupil diameter causes 0.05 logMAR change in the visual acuity value on average. Our result is in good agreement with former clinical experience derived indirectly from measurements that had independently analyzed the effect of background illumination on pupil size and on visual quality.
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Keywords: human eye model; psychometric function; pupil diameter; surrounding illumination; vision; visual acuity

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: January 13, 2019

This article was made available online on January 13, 2019 as a Fast Track article with title: "Investigation of the effect of pupil diameter on visual acuity using a neuro-physiological model of the human eye".

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  • For more than 30 years, the Electronic Imaging Symposium has been serving those in the broad community - from academia and industry - who work on imaging science and digital technologies. The breadth of the Symposium covers the entire imaging science ecosystem, from capture (sensors, camera) through image processing (image quality, color and appearance) to how we and our surrogate machines see and interpret images. Applications covered include augmented reality, autonomous vehicles, machine vision, data analysis, digital and mobile photography, security, virtual reality, and human vision. IS&T began sole sponsorship of the meeting in 2016. All papers presented at EIs 20+ conferences are open access.

    Please note: For purposes of its Digital Library content, IS&T defines Open Access as papers that will be downloadable in their entirety for free in perpetuity. Copyright restrictions on papers vary; see individual paper for details.

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