Standard Active Last Updated: May 07, 2018 Track Document
ASTM D523-14(2018)

Standard Test Method for Specular Gloss

Standard Test Method for Specular Gloss D0523-14R18 ASTM|D0523-14R18|en-US Standard Test Method for Specular Gloss Standard new BOS Vol. 06.01 Committee E12
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Significance and Use

5.1 Gloss is associated with the capacity of a surface to reflect more light in directions close to the specular than in others. Measurements by this test method correlate with visual observations of surface shininess made at roughly the corresponding angles.

5.1.1 Measured gloss ratings by this test method are obtained by comparing the specular reflectance from the specimen to that from a black glass standard. Since specular reflectance depends also on the surface refractive index of the specimen, the measured gloss ratings change as the surface refractive index changes. In obtaining the visual gloss ratings, however, it is customary to compare the specular reflectances of two specimens having similar surface refractive indices.

5.2 Other visual aspects of surface appearance, such as distinctness of reflected images, reflection haze, and texture, are frequently involved in the assessment of gloss (1), (6), (7). Test Method E430 includes techniques for the measurement of both distinctness-of-image gloss and reflection haze. Test Method D4039 provides an alternative procedure for measuring reflection haze.

5.3 Little information about the relation of numerical-to-perceptual intervals of specular gloss has been published. However, in many applications the gloss scales of this test method have provided instrumental scaling of coated specimens that have agreed well with visual scaling (10).

5.4 When specimens differing widely in perceived gloss or color, or both, are compared, nonlinearity may be encountered in the relationship between visual gloss difference ratings and instrumental gloss reading differences.


1.1 This test method covers the measurement of the specular gloss of nonmetallic specimens for glossmeter geometries of 60, 20, and 85° (1-7).2

1.2 The values stated in inch-pound units are to be regarded as standard. The values given in parentheses are mathematical conversions to SI units that are provided for information only and are not considered standard.

1.3 This standard does not purport to address all of the safety concerns, if any, associated with its use. It is the responsibility of the user of this standard to establish appropriate safety, health, and environmental practices and determine the applicability of regulatory limitations prior to use.

1.4 This international standard was developed in accordance with internationally recognized principles on standardization established in the Decision on Principles for the Development of International Standards, Guides and Recommendations issued by the World Trade Organization Technical Barriers to Trade (TBT) Committee.

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Book of Standards Volume: 06.01
Developed by Subcommittee: E12.03
Pages: 5
DOI: 10.1520/D0523-14R18
ICS Code: 83.140.01