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Proceedings Paper

Automating the estimation of coating thickness measurements in the ball crater technique
Author(s): J. G. Huang; Panos Liatsis; Kevin Cooke; Dennis Teer
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Paper Abstract

Being a low cost method, the ball crater method is being widely used in both the laboratory and industry for thickness measurements of coatings. A crucial step of this technique is the determination of the radii of the crater circles from a microscope image. The accuracy of the thickness value is mostly defined by the accuracy of radius measurements. Traditional methods of measuring the radii involve human operators, who inevitably introduce measurement uncertainty. In this work, we propose an automated method of estimating the crater radii with the aid of image processing. It measures the radius by fitting a circle to all edge points of the crater circle, which is extracted from the microscope image of the crater by using image processing techniques. It enables automating the process of determining the coating thickness from the image of a ball crater on a coating. Furthermore, because it utilizes all edge points to estimate the radius value, it increases robustness and measurement accuracy. Experimental results confirm the feasibility of our method and its potential in reducing measurement uncertainty and increasing measurement accuracy of the ball crater method.

Paper Details

Date Published: 7 February 2011
PDF: 7 pages
Proc. SPIE 7877, Image Processing: Machine Vision Applications IV, 78770X (7 February 2011); doi: 10.1117/12.882204
Show Author Affiliations
J. G. Huang, City Univ. London (United Kingdom)
Teer Coatings Ltd. (United Kingdom)
Panos Liatsis, City Univ. London (United Kingdom)
Kevin Cooke, Teer Coatings Ltd. (United Kingdom)
Dennis Teer, Teer Coatings Ltd. (United Kingdom)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 7877:
Image Processing: Machine Vision Applications IV
David Fofi; Philip R. Bingham, Editor(s)

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