Print Research & Imaging Systems Modeling Laboratory (PRISM)


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Print Research & Imaging Systems Modeling Laboratory (PRISM)

1 June 2008
31 May 2009

Laboratory Director's Comments

Dr. Marcos Esterman


The PRISM Lab continues to focus on three key areas; Print Image Quality, Printing
Characterization and Development, and Sustainability in Printing. In
November of 2008, PRISM hosted its second research round
table which included
participation from Eastman Kodak, Hewlett
Packard, Ricoh and Xerox. The focus of the
meeting was to discuss

challenges of incorporating sustainability into business, and in
particular, technology decision
making. In recognition of the importance of sustainable
printing as its own research area, the Sustainable Print Systems Laboratory (SPSL) was
founded in 200
8 by Marcos Esterman and Sandra Rothenberg (from the Saunders College
of Business). The obvious close link with PRISM and the SPSL will remain. Additional,
infrastructure has been added to characterize and better understand Electrophotographic
process phy
sics through the generous donation of a linear test
bed by Eastman Kodak.
This test
bed has already been a vehicle for fostering industry collaboration between local
print manufacturers and will form the center
piece for further research of interest to th
industry as a whole. With this added infrastructure coupled with previously developed
infrastructure, PRISM is positioning itself to be a valuable resource for


empirical and analytical knowledge
and enabling more sustainable printing. PRI
continues to use sponsored research projects to support student projects. These have
included both individual thesis projects and multi
disciplinary team projects through the
Kate Gleason College of Engineering.

Faculty and staff:

Dr. Marcos Est
, Laboratory Director, CIS Graduate Program Faculty, and
Associate Prof, KGCOE
(Industrial & Systems Engineering)

Marcos' expertise is in the modeling of engineering systems, the development of robust
design methods, and in product and process development.

Dr. Jonathan Arney
, Professor, CIS,

Jon's expertis
e is in physical and optical measurements of materials and the mechanistic
analysis of printing processes.


Susan Farnand
, Staff Scientist

Susan's expertise is in human vision, ps
ychometrics, color science, and the application of
these sciences to product and process development.

Dr. Juan Cockburn
, Associate Professor, KGCOE (
Computer Eng.)

Juan's expertise is
in the modeling of control systems and the design of robust, nonlinear
control systems.

Franziska Frey,
Associate Professor
, McGhee P
ofessor, School of Print Media,


Franziska is a member of the

Center's Graduate Program Faculty. Her expertise is in the
digitization of cultural heritage materials, digital fine art printing, and digital asset

Sandra Rothenberg,
Associate Professor
Saunders College of Business

Sandra is an Associate Professor at Rochester Institute of Technology’s Philip E.
Saunders College of Business in the Department of Management.
er research primarily
focuses on corporate environmental
strategy and management, lean manufacturing and
environmental performance, government regulation and technical innovation,
international environmental management, worker participation, and environmental
activism within firms.

Summary of Current Research

Electrophotographic process physics

Enabling sustainable printing practices through the characterization and
development of the needed technologies

Mechanisms of fusing in dry toner electrophotography

Optical and physical interactions of tone
rs and inks with papers

Development of analytical protocols for assessment of print image quality

Application of uncertainty modeling and robust control theory
printing systems

Evaluating the image quality gap between digital printing and
printing technologies

Summary of

in Imaging and Printing:

Members of PRISM have served active roles in Imaging and Printing through service on
committees and support of professional conferences. In particular, Susan Farnand has
with the WG04 committee on Print Image Quality under the auspices of SC
28 Office Equipment committee of ISO, designing psychophysical test procedures to be
used in international experimentation leading to new and updated standards on image
quality assessm
. Susan also served as co
editor for a special issue of the Journal of
Electronic Imaging on image quality, as well as continuing to co
chair the Image Quality
Systems Performance conference at the Electronic Imaging Symposium in San Jose, CA
and chair
ing the Print and Image Quality session at the NIP25 conference on Digital
Printing Technologies. Marcos Esterman was the conference chair for the 2009 ASME
International Design Engineering and Technical Conferences Design for
Manufacturability and Life
ycle Conference (DFMLC) and will be the DFMLC
secretary for the 2009

2010 academic year.

Graduate Thesis Projects:

PRISM's contribution to academic degree programs has been focused on increasing
student opportunities in print imaging technology. Towar
d this end we have supported
thesis projects for several graduate students as described below.


Fermin Colon

Ph.D. Project Title "A model of electrophotographic
printing that is independent of the halftone algorithm". Mr. Colon
Lopez has be
en a part
time graduate student in CIS for many years, earned a MS in Imaging Science, and is
expected to complete his dissertation by the end of the current academic year.

r. Carl Smith

M.S. Project Title "The Analysis of Specular Reflections from
Printed Surfaces". Mr. Smith is a graduate student in CIS and is working with PRISM on
the development of instrumentation and analytical protocols for the optical
characterization of printed images.

r. Alvaro Rojas

M.S. Project Title "
A Selection F
ramework for Derivative
Product in Changing Platforms
". Mr. Rojas completed his MS Thesis in the Industrial
and Systems Engineering in the summer of 2008. While his thesis work is not directly
related to PRISM, Mr. Rojas had been the lead research assis
tant on development of the
fuser test
beds. He has taken the feasibility prototypes developed by the
Multidisciplinary Design program and made them working lab instruments.

r. Jared Russell

M.S. Project Title "
An Optimization A
pproach to
Controller Co

". Mr. Russell graduated with a dual degree BS/MS in Computer
Engineering in the summer of 2009. His work with PRISM developed the control systems
for both fuser
test beds, and was the basis of his thesis work.

Ms. Alicia Te
jada Abreu:

M.S. Project Title: “Explaining Print Media Paper
Consumption Patterns through a System Dynamics Approach”.
Ms. Tejada Abreu is a
first year PhD student in Golisano Institute for Sustainability and a researcher in the
PRIM lab. He long
term r
esearch focus is on the role that technology can play to enable
reduced media consumption in the print industry. Her MS thesis is expected to be
complete in the Fall 2009, where she is modeling historical media consumption patterns
so that we can understa
nd the relevant dynamics that have led to some counter
behavior (e.g. why is the paperless office an elusive goal).

Ms. Suparna Kishore Kalghatgi:

M.S. Project Title: TBD.
is a
second year graduate student in Industrial and Sy
stems Engineering and will be working
with PRISM to support the Sherwin/Williams project.
The goal of this project is to
provide Sherwin/Williams with quantitative information about the material parameters
that must be controlled to minimize the "touch

effect in painted surfaces, to provide
guidance on how to measure those parameters physically, and to use psychophysical
experimental techniques to generate models for predicting changes in appearance.

Ms. Angelica Li:

M.S. Project Title: Implementi
ng Sustainability in Commercial
Lithographic Printing Operations

A Workflows Approach to Identifying Sustainable
Ms. Li is a graduate student in School of Print Media. This work is supervised
by Franziska Frey and Marcos Esterman. This work wi
ll contribute better understanding
of the impact that workflow decisions have on the sustainability of printing.

Masters in Product Development:

Marcos Esterman is on the teaching faculty
of the Masters in Product Development Program
. One of his roles is to supervise the
capstone thesis of a project team of 2
3 students. In the past two years, the projects have
been focused on gaining increased understanding of the role that R&D plays in the
development of sustainable technologies.

In particular, the topics of these capstones
have been: “The Challenges in Incorporating Sustainability into
Product Development

and “
Enabling By
Product Exchanges through Product Development

Undergraduate Projects:

PRISM also has a commitment to pro
vide research opportunities to undergraduates at

Allan Liburd

Project Title: "Improvement of Java Code for the
microgoniophotometer". This work was performed as a summer project in 2009.
Previous work in PRISM has shown that a more thoro
ugh analysis of gloss can be
accomplished with little additio
nal effort using the RIT microg
oniophotometer as
compared to a traditional gloss

In order to improve the usability of this device, a
Java program was previously developed to control and a
nalyze the resulting images. The
focus of this project was to debug and improve the existing code.

Senior Undergraduate Engineering Design Projects:

A particularly successful way in which the PRISM lab has contributed to RIT academic
opportunity has been

through the sponsorship of projects in the RIT Multidisciplinary
Senior Design (MSD) Program. This is a program developed by the Kate Gleason
College of Engineering to offer multidisciplinary capstone projects. These projects
challenge engineering student
s from a variety of technical disciplines to work together as
a team to accomplish a complex, practical project. Professor Esterman is a member of the
KGCOE MSD teaching team and steering committee as well as an Extended Faculty
member in CIS and has devot
ed a significant amount of time to the development of this
unique educational opportunity. Over the past year, the PRISM lab sponsored one
project and was involved in advisory capacity on a second.

Project Title: "The Development of an

Development and
Transfer Station
”. This Senior Design project was sponsored by the PRISM lab
make an existing electrophotographic development and transfer station function
and to improve its usability.
The design team involved eight senior engineering
students in KGCOE including three from mechanical engineering, three from
electrical engineering, one from computer engineering and one from industrial
and systems engineering.

Project Title: “
Low Energy Printing (Xerox)
”. This project, sponsored and
naged by Xerox, challenged the
senior design
to re
consider the design of
an extremely low p
ower, non
thermal fusing system. PRISM personnel served an
advisory role. This project is leading to an active collaboration in low energy
printing. In the co
urse of this project, the team members were to

performance specifications and critical parameters for potential adaptation to a
y available monochrome printer
initiate a prototype for market

The team consisted of two
mechanical engineers, one electrical
engineer and one industrial and systems engineer.

Funded Research: (totaling $

(both monetary and equipment donations) over the past year has been primarily
from Hewlett
Packard, Xerox, Eastman
Kodak, Sherwin/Williams, and the Print Industry
Center. Specific projects are shown below

Evaluating the Value of Print on Screen versus on Paper Using Eye


Susan Farnand, PI. The objective of this print versus display project is to develop a

methodology for and to conduct initial experimentation examining the differences in the
efficacy of magazine advertising on screen relative to the printed page, with particular
attention to the advantages and disadvantages of print. Longer term, it is int
ended that the
experimental methodology will be used to explore possible differences in efficacy of
print on paper versus display and which characteristics of these media are particularly
relevant when comparing the consumption of information on paper vers
us on screen.
Development of this methodology will involve an assessment of evaluation criteria
including information retention, distribution of visual gaze as measured by eyetrackers,
time needed and eye movements that occur when detecting image differenc
es, and visual
comfort. The initial phase of the project will involve using eyetrackers to monitor eye
movements when looking at a photo booklet either on screen or in print. Areas of the
images fixated for each media will be recorded and compared. Inform
ation retention will
be assessed by having participants answer questions about the images that were viewed.
The time spent with each medium will also be recorded.

Measurement, Modeling and Perception of Painted Surfaces


Jim Ferwerda PI, Jon
PI, Susan Farnand, Co
PI. The project will apply RIT's unique capabilities in
(1) measurement of optical surface properties, (2) modeling and simulation of surface
appearance based on physical measurements (3) psychometric analysis and prediction of
pearance. Using samples provided by Sherwin
Williams, we will use our unique
microgoniophotometer to capture spatially resolved BRDF data inside, outside and at the
edges of the touch up region. These data will be represented as calibrated reflectance
ges taken under controlled lighting conditions. We will then analyze these images
using multiscale image processing methods to determine if and how the regions differ in
texture at different spatial frequencies. This analysis will give us the data we need
understand what particular surface properties are contributing to the measured (by the
glossmeter) and visual gloss differences. We anticipate that different formulations and
application methods will lead to significant differences in the spatial freque
ncy statistics
that may be important with respect to the measured and observed gloss differences.

Design and Initial Approach for a Print Energy Life
cycle Decision Tool

Esterman Co
PI, Sandra Rothenberg Co
PI, Scott Hawker, Co
echnology holds tremendous potential to help consumers and firms make more
sustainable choices by providing information at key decision points. As one example,
there are a number of software programs that help calculate and summarize
environmental metrics
for various products and processes. Surprisingly, while many
printers are moving into the IT arena, the technology has not been fully utilized. For the
most part, there is a lack of knowledge on the part of the consumer on the sustainability
impacts of the
ir communication decisions. Thus, this

outlines a

could be used to estimate

the energy consumption of printing a given
document, by analyzing the user’s requirements for the print job, the printer selected and
the corresp
onding life
cycle criteria for these elements.

A Survey into Sustainability Metrics and Methods


Marcos Esterman Co
PI, Sandra
Rothenberg, Co
The goal of this research it to perform a survey into metrics and
methods employed by the printing indus
try to measure, track and integrate sustainability
into their business practices. In addition, it is also recognized by the PI’s that a great deal
of work has been conducted in this area by the print industry, but that a proper inventory
of the current sta
te of the art is lacking. Therefore, the focus of this

is to define the
research roadmap that will be required to develop this inventory and execute the first
phase of that inventory. In addition to the inherent value of just the described service, t
work would serve as the foundation for the future development of a printing value chain
bed envisioned by the PI’s.

Implementation of an Electrophotographic Linear Test


Marcos Esterman Co
PI, Jonathan Arney Co
PI, Susan Farnand Co
e proposed project will leverage
resources from Eastman Kodak
and Xerox
to finish the development of an
electrophotographic linear test
bed. This test
bed will be the centerpiece

which to
perform informative experiments that will benefit a consortium

of EP
based printer
manufacturers, to develop education programs to train future electrophotographers, and to
develop ideas for novel applications of EP.

Benchmarking Art Image Interchange Cycles Image Quality Experimentation



Frey, PI and

Susan Farnand.
This project is being conducted to evaluate
current practices in fine art image reproduction, determine the image quality generally
achievable, and establish a suggested framework for art image interchange. Toward this
end, experimentatio
n is being conducted in which a set of objective targets and pieces of
artwork in various media are being imaged by participating museums. Print files and
guide prints will be delivered to the Rochester Institute of Technology where prints will
be made an
d used as stimuli in psychometric testing to generate scales of image quality.
The experimental results will be among the inputs used to construct a conceptual
framework of the various types of imaging taking place in cultural institutions at present.
sed on this framework, an image processing tool that incorporates appearance models
that are adequate for the various working environments in cultural heritage institutions
will be developed.

Journal Publications:

Briceño, C. M., Carrano, A. L., Thorn,

B. K., and Esterman, M.,

A Design Optimization
Framework To Estimate Environmental Impact Of Design Decisions In Consumer

, Journal of Green Building, Spring 2009, Volume 4, Number 2, College

Conference Proceedings

S. P. Farnand,

Minding the Gap: An Examination of the Image Quality Differences
Between Digital Print Technologies and Traditional Offset Lithography

(Focal)", IS&T NIP
24 Louisville, KY, 2009.

Athalye, S. A., S. K. Govindarajan, C. A. Lopez, Marcos Esterman, Jr.,
Rothenberg , “Challenges in Incorporating Sustainability into Product Development: An
Exploratory Study”, Proceedings of IDETC ‘09: ASME International Design Engineering
Technical Conferences and Computers and Information in Engineering Conferences,

August 31
September 3, 2009, San Diego, California, USA.

S. P. Farnand
, F. Frey, and E. Anderso
n, “
Benchmarking Art Image Interchange



Quality Experimentation
”, AIC 2009, Sydney, Australia, 2009.

C.G. Smith, J.S. Arney, S.P. Farnand, C.
MacDonald, and B. Stroka, “Analysis of
Specular Reflections from Printed Images and the Characterization of Gloss Bronzing”,
24 Pittsburgh, PA, 2008.

M. Esterman, S. Dargan, B. Thorn, and J. Arney, “Application of the Operating Window
Concept to
Improve Fuser Reliability: A Case Study on Failure Modes of Hot & Cold
Offset”, IS&T NIP
24 Pittsburgh, PA, 2008.

A. Rojas, M. Esterman, A Measure of Impact for Platform Changes, Proceedings of
IDETC ‘08: ASME International Design Engineering Technical Co
nferences and
Computers and Information in Engineering Conferences, August 3
6, 2008, New York,
New York, USA.

M. Esterman, Spano, J., Pereda, D., Zimmerman, R., “An Exploratory Study into Process
Failures During The Voice of Customer Process In Product D

, Proceedings
of IDETC ‘08: ASME International Design Engineering Technical Conferences and
Computers and Information in Engineering Conferences, August 3
6, 2008, New York,
New York, USA.

M. Esterman, J. Knapp, C. Saunders, M. Slot, “Environme
ntal and Reliability Challenges
for Electrophotographic and Ink Jet Printing, Panel Session”, IS&T NIP
24 Pittsburgh,
PA, 2008.

F. A. Colon
Lopez and J. S. Arney, “A Method for Classifying Halftone Patterns Based
on Pattern Morphology (Interactive)”, IS&T

24 Pittsburgh, PA, 2008.