Alpha channel

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An Alpha channel is an additional image channel just like the red, green or blue channel, too. It can contain any information in form of a grayscale image but commenly it is used to store a selection or a mask.

  • Black alpha channel pixels usually stand for masked, invisible or unselected pixels in the main image.
  • White alpha channel pixels stand for unmasked, visible or selected pixels.
  • Gray alpha channel pixels stand for more or less translucent pixels according to the brightness of gray.

More information on Wikipedia: [1]