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In this paper, we propose an edge-based junction detector. In addition to detecting the locations of junctions, this operator specifies their orientations as well. In this respect, a junction is defined as a meeting point of two or more ridges in the gradient domain into which an image can be transformed through Gaussian derivative filters. To accelerate the detection process, two binary edge maps are produced; a thick-edge map is obtained by imposing a threshold on the gradient magnitude image, and another thin-edge map is obtained by calculating the local maxima. Circular masks are centered at putative junctions in the thick-edge map, and the so-called circumferential anchors or CA points are detected in the thin map. Radial lines are scanned to determine the presence of junctions. Comparisons are made with other well-known detectors. This paper proposes a new formula for measuring the detection accuracy. In addition, the so-called junction coordinate systems are introduced. Our operator has been successfully used to solve many problems such as wide-baseline matching, 3-D reconstruction, camera parameter enhancing, and indoor and obstacle localization.