Hyperspectral inspection in NIR range

Hyperspectral inspection in the near-infrared range allows the quality of organic products to be analysed very quickly. The NIR system of Wageningen Food & Biobased Research detects defects that cannot be seen with the naked eye.

The naked eye is often incapable of identifying defects in a flow of organic products. Hyperspectral inspection in the NIR range allows a fast analysis of deviations that are undetectable by the naked eye. The technology of Wageningen Food & Biobased Research is also suitable to study which components or characteristics a product contains. This involves issues such as the percentage of dry matter, moisture, protein, starch or fat. Derived parameters, such as seed vitality, ripening of seeds on plants, early detection of rot development in fruits can also be measured using hyperspectral inspection in the NIR range. This makes it an ideal technology for companies to quantitatively and qualitatively analyse raw materials, semi-manufactured products and end products.

Quality analysis

Hyperspectral inspection in the NIR range is based on the principle that substances absorb light or thermal radiation at characteristic wavelengths. Wageningen Food & Biobased Research has a hyperspectral camera with a range between 940 and 1,790 nanometres and a wavelength interval of approximately 3.3 nanometres, or 256 pixels. The camera rapidly produces a flow of data regarding the inspected product. Using our in-house developed software data can be analysed and the quality of products evaluated.

Benefits of NIR

NIR technology offers companies in the agro-food sector many benefits. The technique is cost-efficient and extremely fast: products are analysed within a few milliseconds. Moreover, the product remains intact. By analysing the production process using NIR hyperspectral inspection manufacturers can deliver products with a constant quality.

Removing products from the production process

In the sorting process, the technology can be used to detect foreign materials, which are then mechanically removed from the process. Examples include capsicums infected with internal rot or potatoes with sugar ends. Other instances involve components in a bulk flow that cannot be identified by colour, but can be detected due to their chemical composition.