Ranking of fibre-reinforced composite plate surface finish quality by wavelet texture analysis
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In the automotive and other industries, the visual appearance of external surfaces is a key factor in perceived product quality. Traditionally, the quality of automotive surface finish has been judged by expert human auditors. A set of 17 fibre-reinforced composite plates was previously manufactured to have a range of surface finish quality, and these plates were previously ranked by three expert observers and also optically digitally imaged. Following validation of the previous rankings, we applied the wavelet texture analysis (WTA) technique to the digital photographs to derive an instrumental measure of surface finish quality based on the panel images. The rank correlation between the human expert surface finish quality ratings and those from the WTA image analysis process was found to be positive, large and statistically significant. This finding indicates that WTA could form the basis of an inexpensive practical instrumental method for the ranking of fibre-reinforced composite surface finish quality.
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