Would you like to be able to differentiate between two apparently identical materials? Detect a stone before bagging your product? Hyperspectral cameras allow us to do this and much more!

What is Hyperspectral Technology?

The hyperspectral technology allow us to capture and process a large number of wavelengths, differentiating between different types of materials. It is also used in the military field, and in agriculture, for example, for environmental monitoring.

The hyperspectral image allow us to perform the mapping of minerals, to distinguish their composition and even to make a less invasive medical diagnosis. A hyperspectral image allow us to see beyond what our eyes see, they represent physical and chemical information of what we are seeing, in real time. Therefore, it allow us to carry out classification of a material, without having to go through the laboratory.

 

“Close range hyperspectral imaging of plants: A review. Biosystems Engineering. Puneet Mishra, Mohd Shahrimie, Ana Herrero et al”

Hyperspectral cameras allow us to “see” at the same time as if we were bees since they allow us to see in the ultraviolet range of 10 nm to 380 nm, like human because they allow us to see in the visible infrared, from 380 nm to 700 nm, and like goldfish because allow us to see in infrared from 700 nm to 1000 nm.

It is a measurement method:

– No contact: as it is a camera, the images are captured without material contact and in many cases, it can be done in real time, both capture and analysis. Therefore, it is a very effective characterization and measurement method.

– Non destructive: in the same way, it is a non-destructive measurement system since there is no physical interaction with the material, so we will obtain our results without damaging it.

Very important aspects to consider:

– The calibration of the equipment for our material and the element that we want to detect.

– Lighting selection: depending on the type of application we want to start, it will be necessary to study the appropriate lighting conditions, for example, add infrared lighting, maintain constant lighting, etc.

– Selection of the wavelengths that we want to observe: once the application has been defined, it will also be important to determine in which bands are the materials or characteristics to be analyzed, in order to select the equipment that best suits our needs.

Differences with other Vision Technologies

The differences with other types of Computer Vision are based on the number of wavelengths and data that the system is capable of capturing. So we can differentiate between these types of images:

– Binary images: they contain two types of state, zeros or ones. The information they provide us is very limited to be sufficient for some applications where we only need to know contours between objects with high contrast.

– Grayscale images: they can have 255 states (scale) in terms of gray tone. They provide us more information than the previous one. They may be enough in a large number of applications where we don’t need to know the color coordinates.

– Color images: in this case we move to another dimension since we have 3 channels: red, green and blue, so we have a cube of positions where we can have each color pixel.

– Multispectral imaging: again, we increase in another dimension since here we have the information of the colored cubes but in various wavelengths. Multispectral cameras normally receive information of about 2 to 10 wavelengths, not contiguous to each other. They serve to detect some differences in composition.

– Hyperspectral imaging: the difference with the previous ones is the number of wavelengths they represent. In this case, there is information on hundreds of contiguous bands, so the differences that can be detected and the composition range is much greater.

Benefits of Hyperspectral Technology

Hyperspectral images give us, among others, the following benefits:

– Quality and reliability: it gives us the ability to detect foreign bodies, which improves quality inspection, for example, in food sector.

– Fast, real-time inspection of 100% of production, no contact and no invasive with processes.

– Adaptable to existing processes, providing notable improvements and security in inspection and quality controls.

 

    Hyperspectral Technology Applications

    Here we explain some of the most interesting hyperspectral technology applications:

    Find inert foreign element in the products

    Find differences between organic elements in the products

    Inspection in seal containers

    Measure composition and nutritional elements in the food

    Control of process which has finished (baking)

    Moisture monitoring

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