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THE APPEARANCE OF THE SURFACE OF AN OBJECT or material can be described by its color and gloss characteristics. Like color, gloss can be subdivided into several aspects depending on viewing conditions. In 1937, Hunter identified five aspects of gloss  and the functions of reflectance by which they could be evaluated. Later studies by Lex  expanded Hunter's gloss terms and divided them into two groups. One group is based on visual observation with the eye focused on the surface of the material (Fig. 1). For the other group, the eye is focused on the image of the object reflected by the material (Fig. 2). However, investigations have shown that no single objective measurement of gloss will provide perfect correlation with the integrated subjective appraisal of glossiness that the eye so quickly renders. For this reason, the gloss evaluation requirement of an object or material should first be examined and the most useful gloss measurement aspects then selected.
Marketing Manager, BYK-Gardner GmbH, Geretsried,
Hammond, Harry K.
Consulting scientist, BYK-Gardner USA, Columbia, MD