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Fingerprint images generally either contain only a single fingerprint or a set of non-overlapped fingerprints (e.g., slap fingerprints). However, there are situations where more than one fingerprint overlap on each other. Such situations are frequently encountered when latent fingerprints are lifted from crime scenes or residue fingerprints are left on fingerprint sensors. Overlapped fingerprints constitute a serious challenge to existing fingerprint recognition techniques, since these techniques are designed under the assumption that fingerprints have been properly segmented. In this paper, a novel algorithm is proposed to separate overlapped fingerprints into component or individual fingerprints.
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