Detection of objects in images in an automated fashion is necessary for many applications, including automated target recognition. In this paper, we present results of an automated boundary detection procedure using a new subclass of Markov random fields (MRFs), called partially ordered Markov models (POMMs). POMMs offer computational advantages over general MRFs. We show how a POMM can model the boundaries in an image. Our algorithm for boundary detection uses a Bayesian approach to build a posterior boundary model that locates edges of objects having a closed loop boundary. We apply our method to images of mines with very good results. 2004 Copyright SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering.