Maximum a posteriori estimates in inverse problems are often based on quadratic formulations, corresponding to a least-squares fitting of the data and to the use of the L2 norm on the regularization term. While the implementation of this estimation is straightforward and usually based on the Gauss-Newton method, resulting estimates are sensitive to outliers and result in spatial distributions of the estimates that are smooth. As an alternative, the use of the L1 norm on the data term renders the estimation robust to outliers, and the use of the L1 norm on the regularization term allows the reconstruction of sharp spatial profiles. The ability therefore to use the L1 norm either on the data term, on the regularization term, or on both is desirable, though the use of this norm results in non-smooth objective functions which require more sophisticated implementations compared to quadratic algorithms. Methods for L1-norm minimization have been studied in a number of contexts, including in the recently popular total variation regularization. Different approaches have been used and methods based on primal-dual interior-point methods (PD-IPMs) have been shown to be particularly efficient. In this paper we derive a PD-IPM framework for using the L1 norm indifferently on the two terms of an inverse problem. We use electrical impedance tomography as an example inverse problem to demonstrate the implementation of the algorithms we derive, and the effect of choosing the L2 or the L1 norm on the two terms of the inverse problem. Pseudo-codes for the algorithms and a public domain implementation are provided.

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Journal Inverse Problems
Borsic, A., & Adler, A. (2012). A primal-dual interior-point framework for using the L1 or L2 norm on the data and regularization terms of inverse problems. Inverse Problems, 28(9). doi:10.1088/0266-5611/28/9/095011