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Spectral homogenization techniques for the hyperspectral image projector



Joseph P. Rice, Logan E. Hillberry


In an effort to improve technology for performance testing and calibration of multispectral and hyperspectral imagers, the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) has been developing a Hyperspectral Image Projector (HIP) capable of projecting dynamic scenes than include distinct, programmable spectra in each of its 1024x768 spatial pixels. The HIP is comprised of a spectral engine, which is a light source capable generating the spectra in the scene, coupled to a spatial engine, capable of projecting the spectra into the correct locations of the scene. In the prototype HIP, the light exiting the Visible-Near-Infrared (VNIR) / Short-Wavelength Infrared (SWIR) spectral engine is spectrally dispersed and needs to be spectrally homogenized before it enters the spatial engine. In this paper we describe the results from a study of several different techniques for performing this spectral homogenization. These techniques include an integrating sphere, a liquid light guide, a randomized fiber bundle, and an engineered diffuser, in various combinations. The spectral uniformity of projected HIP scenes is measured and analyzed using the spectral angle mapper (SAM) algorithm over the VNIR spectral range. SAM provides a way to analyze the spectral uniformity independently from the radiometric uniformity. The goal of the homogenizer is a spectrally uniform and bright projected image. Using an integrating sphere (IS) provides the most spectrally uniform image, but at a great loss of light compared with the other methods. The randomized fiber bundle outperforms the liquid light guide. Using an engineered diffuser with the randomized fiber bundle increases the spectral uniformity by a factor of five, with a decrease in brightness by a factor of five, compared with the randomized fiber bundle alone. The combination of an engineered diffuser with a randomized fiber bundle provides comparable spectral uniformity to the IS while enabling 40 times greater brightness.
Proceedings Title
Proceedings of SPIE
Conference Dates
April 20-25, 2015
Conference Location
Baltimore, MD


imaging, hardware-in-the-loop, hyperspectral, scene projector, spectrometer, testing


Rice, J. and Hillberry, L. (2015), Spectral homogenization techniques for the hyperspectral image projector, Proceedings of SPIE, Baltimore, MD, [online], (Accessed May 24, 2024)


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Created May 15, 2015, Updated February 19, 2017