Fully Adaptive Bayesian Algorithm for Data Analysis, FABADA

Pablo M Sanchez-Alarcon, Yago Ascasibar Sequeiros

The aim of this paper is to describe a novel non-parametric noise reduction technique from the point of view of Bayesian inference that may automatically improve the signal-to-noise ratio of one- and two-dimensional data, such as e.g. astronomical images and spectra. The algorithm iteratively evaluates possible smoothed versions of the data, the smooth models, obtaining an estimation of the underlying signal that is statistically compatible with the noisy measurements. Iterations stop based on the evidence and the $\chi^2$ statistic of the last smooth model, and we compute the expected value of the signal as a weighted average of the whole set of smooth models. In this paper, we explain the mathematical formalism and numerical implementation of the algorithm, and we evaluate its performance in terms of the peak signal to noise ratio, the structural similarity index, and the time payload, using a battery of real astronomical observations. Our Fully Adaptive Bayesian Algorithm for Data Analysis (FABADA) yields results that, without any parameter tuning, are comparable to standard image processing algorithms whose parameters have been optimized based on the true signal to be recovered, something that is impossible in a real application. State-of-the-art non-parametric methods, such as BM3D, offer slightly better performance at high signal-to-noise ratio, while our algorithm is significantly more accurate for extremely noisy data (higher than $20-40\%$ relative errors, a situation of particular interest in the field of astronomy). In this range, the standard deviation of the residuals obtained by our reconstruction may become more than an order of magnitude lower than that of the original measurements. The source code needed to reproduce all the results presented in this report, including the implementation of the method, is publicly available at https://github.com/PabloMSanAla/fabada

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