Gloss is a visual perception and appearance of an object. The gloss perception is caused when the object is evaluated when light is reflected on its surface. The appearance may be matte, metallic, lustrous or shiny. The intensity of glossiness is based upon two main factors. The first being the surface quality of the object and the other one being the reflection of light on its surface. The glossiness of an object changes with the amount of light reflected such as the same object will look glossier when exposed to high powered light, semi-glossy in optimum lighting arrangement and less glossy in areas that are poorly lit.
Gloss meters are instruments that are used for quality control for products in the manufacturing process. It is used to measure specular reflection on the surface of an object. Depending upon the type of object surface to be measured, there are different geometries available for measuring the intensity of gloss.
The amount of glossiness is influenced by a number of factors like the amount and type of coating applied, smoothness achieved during polishing and the quality of the substrate. Manufacturing companies design their products in order to make it look more appealing in the eyes of their prospective customers. A satin black designer furniture item, glossy magazine covers or highly reflective car body panels are some of the examples. Over time, the gloss factor of the products start fading away making customers suspect about the quality of the product. Gloss meters are used to measure the consistency of gloss on every product that is being manufactured and ensure that the same products of other batches are indifferent. If the quality drops then it might be that there is lack of protection on the surface of the object or the adhesion is poor. Cars, pharmaceuticals, consumer electronics, furniture and food industries are some of the manufacturing industries that use gloss meters for quality control of its products.