School of Physical Sciences

Dr Christopher J. Solomon

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Reader in Physics

Office: Room 109, Ingram Building
Telephone: (01227) 823270
Fax: 01227 827558




I graduated with a B.Sc in theoretical physics in 1983 from Durham - a beautiful city - but somewhat chastened by 3 years pondering in the silent corridors of the theoretical physics section at Durham, I escaped to various corners of the World for 18 months. On return, I opted for a Ph.D in medical imaging at the Institute of Cancer Research/Royal Marsden Hospital in London (nice people, happy memories..) which I got in 1989.

A promising career as an "Electrician's mate" on a Tottenham building site came to an abrupt end  after just six weeks when I "got a start" as a post-doc in Professor Chris Dainty's astronomical imaging group at Imperial College (a great chap). After four and a bit years at Imperial, I started a lectureship at Kent in 1994. I was promoted to Senior Lecturer in 2002 and to Reader in 2005. I also direct VisionMetric Ltd, a spin-out company which is the UK's leading developer and supplier of facial composite software to the police. My main research activities focus on image processing and evolutionary methods with particular interest in the human face.

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Research interests

  • Image Processing and Reconstruction
  • Facial encoding
  • Facial synthesis
  • Forensic Image Analysis
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Also view these in the Kent Academic Repository

    Thorniley, S.C.R. and Davis, Josh P. and Gibson, Stuart J. et al. (2014) The influence of creating a holistic facial composite on children’s and adult’s video lineup identifications. Applied Cognitive Psychology. ISSN 0888-4080. (in press)

    Davis, Josh P. and Gibson, Stuart J. and Solomon, Christopher J. (2014) The positive influence of creating a holistic facial composite on video lineup identification. Applied Cognitive Psychology. ISSN 0888-4080.

    Solomon, Christopher J. and Gibson, Stuart J. and Mist, Joseph J. (2013) Interactive evolutionary generation of facial composites for locating suspects in criminal investigations. Applied Soft Computing, 13 (7). pp. 3298-3306. ISSN 1568-4946.


    Statistical appearance models have previously been used for computer face recognition applications in which an image patch is synthesized and morphed to match a target face image using an automated iterative fitting algorithm. Here we describe an alternative use for appearance models, namely for producing facial composite images (sometimes referred to as E-FIT or PhotoFIT images). This application poses an interesting real- world optimization problem because the target face exists in the mind of the witness and not in a tangible form such as a digital image. To solve this problem we employ an interactive evolutionary algorithm that allows the witness to evolve a likeness to the target face. A system based on our approach, called EFIT-V, is used frequently by three quarters of UK police constabularies.

    Valentine, Tim and Davis, Josh P. and Thorner, Kate et al. (2010) Evolving and combining facial composites: Between-witness and within-witness morphs compared. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Applied, 16 (1). pp. 72-86. ISSN 1076-898X.

    Gibson, Stuart J. and Scandrett, C.M. and Solomon, Christopher J. et al. (2009) Computer Assisted Age Progression. Journal of Forensic Science, Medicine and Pathology, 5 (3). pp. 174-181. ISSN 1547-769X(print)1556-2891(online).


    A computer assisted method for altering the perceived age of a human face is presented. Our technique is based on calculating a trajectory or axis within a multidimensional space that captures the changes in large scale facial structure, shading and complexion associated with aging. Fine facial details associated with increasing age, such as wrinkles, are added to the aged face using a variation on a standard image processing technique called high boost filtering. The method is successfully applied to two-dimensional photographic images exhibiting uncontrolled variations in pose and illumination. Unlike our previous work on automated age progression, here the objective is to allow a certain degree of manual control over the process by the adjustment of three key progression-control-parameters. In the future this work may form the basis for a software tool to be used by forensic artists

Total publications in KAR: 39 [See all in KAR]
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  • Maxwell's equations and Fourier Optics
  • Image Processing
  • Medical Physics
  • Forensic physical methods
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School of Physical Sciences, Ingram Building, University of Kent, Canterbury, Kent, CT2 7NH

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Last Updated: 03/03/2015