Quantitative shape analysis: A review

  • Malcolm W. Clark


Sedimentologists, among others, have been accustomed to the analysis of the shape of sedimentary particles. Recently such shapes have been subjected to more quantitative analysis, almost completely removing the subjective element so long inherent in the various indices. However, these quantitative analyses themselves are not free from qualitative bias, partly displayed in the choice of appropriate technique, and to some extent in the intermediate steps of the data collection and analysis. Various numerical methods are introduced within the framework of a typology based on whether the analysis is performed on the grain considered as an outline, or as a planar surface. Nine desirable properties are suggested, as a yardstick against which to evaluate the descriptors. In all these techniques the object is to examine a discrete approximation of single items, in two dimensions only. Some of the methods are nevertheless applicable to three dimensions.

Key words

sedimentology outline shape Fourier analysis 


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Copyright information

© Plenum Publishing Corporation 1981

Authors and Affiliations

  • Malcolm W. Clark
    • 1
  1. 1.Imperial College Computer CentreLondonEngland

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