Paper was invented in China, where people began writing on sheets of cloth to keep records. From there, a Chinese court official created a pulp using natural materials and let it dry in a thin mat shape. Paper production has changed over the years to become what we know today. At HunterLab, we are dedicated to helping the paper industry meet color standards and best practices for paper production.
Meeting Color Standards for Paper
White paper may seem like a simple color standard to meet, but getting the right white shade can be challenging when we consider surface properties. While there may be a specific white that all paper manufacturers want to achieve, they must factor how light reflects on different surfaces, from low-gloss matte to high-gloss.
Colors have reflected light and absorbed light, and these measurements affect our perception of the color. Reflected light, however, is not an indicator of the actual color, while absorbed light is. For mid-gloss and high-gloss paper, their shiny surfaces offer a lot of reflected light, and it will skew our perception of the color.
To find the right color, paper manufacturers rely on instruments that offer a quantified measurement for color, rather than counting on the human eye. Machines like spectrophotometers can register the light a surface reflects and absorbs to provide a definitive color measurement. With this method, manufacturers can achieve a consistent white paper in all glosses.