Imaging Colour Measurement System (ICM) based on multi-spectral technique I

Colour measurement and colour quality control are very important to the textile and garment industry. We propose to develop an imaging colour measurement (ICM) system for colour related quality control in the industry. Compared with current available techniques, the proposed system is able to measure the accurate spectral colour of the samples with single- and multi-colour patterns, accessories, printings, yarn dyed fabric and any other coloured objects. The measured spectral colour at each of million of pixels and texture structural information in the multispectral images can be simultaneously used for colour assessment based on the human colour vision system. Therefore, the system can overcome the shortcomings of conventional digital imaging system and spectrophotometer system. With the ability of image colour difference evaluation module based on the multispectral imaging analysis, the ICM system can provide more accuracy of colour assessment than currently objective assessment methods.

The ICM system is mainly used for color measurement and quality control of multi-colored and irregular fabric products in the textile and apparel industry. However, with improvement and upgrading of the existing system, its usage of colour quality control can also be extended to industries of plastic, home textile, food, cosmetics and electronic products.

Industry Benefit

• Non-contact colour measurement--- Use multispectral imaging technique to capture high spatial and spectral resolution images;
• Unique features --- Enable colour measurements of multi-coloured fabrics and samples of accessories in different sizes and irregular shapes;
• High definition accuracy --- Calibration performed with standards traceable to the U.S. National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) which provides a reliable and consistent spectral reflectance measurement;
• High fidelity visualisation --- able to solve the problem of metamerism under different illuminant conditions;
• Intelligence --- Extract the dominant colors from the measured fabric samples automatically to conduct colour formulation;
• Shortened product development cycle --- speed up the development of new fabric and different color products by measuring and changing colours on the calibrated display terminals, and speed up the development of new fabric and different color products;
• Less time and cost spent on color communication --- Transmit multispectral images via internet or intranet to eliminate deliveries of physical samples.

Technological Breakthrough

By means of the special optic design, the visible spectrum of the ICM system can be split into more than three narrow bands and a fabric sample captured by a set of monochrome images under a controlled and uniform illumination system. Compared with the conventional trichromatic imaging technology, this system can output a series of high definition image data and give a better performance. The ICM system effectively overcomes the problem of the metamerism and offers a more rigorous and accurate colour measurement and quality control.

Project Name (ITF)
Imaging Colour Measurement (ICM) System for Textile and Garment Industry
Project Number (ITF)