Hyperspectral remote sensing is known to suffer from wavelength bands blocked by atmospheric gases. Short-wave infrared hyperspectral imaging at in situ installations is shown to be affected by water vapour even if the pathlength of light through air is only hundreds of centimetres. This impact is especially noticeable with large variations of relative humidity, the coefficient of variation reaching 5 % in our test case. Using repeated calibrations of imaging system at the same relative humidity as in the measurement, we were able to reduce the coefficient of variation to 1 %. The measurement variations are also shown to induce significant error in material classification. Polymer type identification was selected as the test case for material classification. The measurement variations due to the change in relative humidity are shown to result in 20 % classification error at its minimum. With repeated calibrations or by eliminating the most affected wavelength bands from measurements, we were able to reduce the classification error to less than 1 %. Such improvement of measurement and classification precision may be important for industrial applications such as waste sorting, polymer classification etc.
Keywords: hyperspectral imaging, humidity, infrared, calibration, InGaAs, waste sorting, plastic detection, material classification