Hyperspectral imaging of gel pen inks: an emerging tool in document analysis

Graham Reed, K. Savage, D. Edwards, Niamh Nic Daeid

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

55 Citations (Scopus)


Hyperspectral imaging (HSI) is a useful technique in the examination of writing inks, including gel pen inks, which combines digital imaging with % reflectance spectroscopy. This facilitates the detection of subtle differences between chemically similar inks. This study analysed a variety of blue, red and black gel inks on white office paper using HSI. The potential of the technique for ink discrimination compared to other analytical methods of examination is highlighted. Discriminating powers of 1.00, 0.90 and 0.40 were achieved using HSI for red, blue and black gel inks respectively. The overall discriminating power of 0.76 for the technique combined with its non-destructive nature and minimal sampling requirements demonstrates promise for this type of application.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)71 - 80
Number of pages10
JournalScience and Justice
Issue number1
Early online date10 Oct 2013
Publication statusPublished - 31 Jan 2014


  • gel pen ink
  • hyperspectral imaging
  • discrimination


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