Fingerprint Pattern Classification

The classification of fingerprints into distinct groups based on general similarities allows the fingerprint examiner to search for an unidentified fingerprint within a specific section of the fingerprint file rather than having to search the whole file.
There are numerous fingerprint classification systems in use throughout the world today. These systems are all based on three fundamental ridge formations described by Purkinje, Galton, Vucetich and Henry. They are the arch, the loop – radial and ulnar, and the whorl.

CLASSIFICATION PATTERNS

ARCH

LOOP

WHORL

IDENTIFICATION CHARACTERISTICS

RIDGE ENDING

BIFURCATION

DOT (or ISLAND)

Individuals generally have a mixture of pattern types on their fingertips, with some correlation between the left and right hands. There is also evidence that the general fingerprint pattern may be genetically determined. While the loop pattern is the most common pattern, classification of individuals by assigning a pattern type to each of the ten fingers in an ordered fashion, serves as a first line of differentiation, however, no such classification is likely to be unique.

TYPES OF FINGERPRINT PATTERNS

PLAIN ARCH

TENTED ARCH

PLAIN LOOP

PLAIN LOOP

WHORL

CENTRAL POCKET LOOP

LATERAL POCKET LOOP

TWINNED LOOP

ACCIDENTAL

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