Modeling the Biological Diversity of Pig Carcasses

Publication: ResearchPh.D. thesis – Annual report year: 2009


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This thesis applies methods from medical image analysis for modeling the biological diversity of pig carcasses. The Danish meat industry is very focused on improving product quality and productivity by optimizing the use of the carcasses and increasing productivity in the abattoirs. In order to achieve these goals there is a need for more detailed information about pig carcasses in relation to measures of quality. Non-invasive imaging such as X-ray Computed Tomography (CT) can provide this very detailed information discerning the major tissue types. Medical image analysis provides the tools for extracting and modeling meaningful information from the vast amount of information available from non-invasive imaging data. The lean meat percentage (LMP) is a common standard for measuring the quality of pig carcasses. Measuring the LMP using CT and using this as a reference for calibration of online equipment is investigated, without the need for a calibration against a less accurate manual dissection. The rest of the contributions regard the construction and use of point distribution models (PDM). PDM’s are able to capture the shape variation of a population of shapes, in this case a 3D surface of a specific bone structure in the ham. These models can assist developers of robotic tools by enabling population based testing before actual construction of the tools. Sparse models are compared to the standard PCA based model and a method for fitting PDM’s to sparse data is proposed. The former provides more spatially localized modes of variation that are easier interpretable and the latter enables the use of PDM’s without the need for full point correspondence of new data. There is great potential in applying CT as non-invasive modality in the meat industry, e.g. in population based studies, for shape modeling and for analyzing carcass composition. In the future online CT applications can be used to make decisions on the use of each specific carcass by obtaining improved quality measures.
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationKgs. Lyngby, Denmark
PublisherTechnical University of Denmark (DTU)
StatePublished - Feb 2009
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ID: 5034846