WO2013178819A1 - A method and apparatus for protective clothing compliance - Google Patents

A method and apparatus for protective clothing compliance Download PDF

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Publication number
WO2013178819A1
WO2013178819A1 PCT/EP2013/061334 EP2013061334W WO2013178819A1 WO 2013178819 A1 WO2013178819 A1 WO 2013178819A1 EP 2013061334 W EP2013061334 W EP 2013061334W WO 2013178819 A1 WO2013178819 A1 WO 2013178819A1
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WO
WIPO (PCT)
Prior art keywords
colour
person
protective
detection apparatus
image
Prior art date
Application number
PCT/EP2013/061334
Other languages
French (fr)
Inventor
Conor Bennett
Stephen Tyrrell
Henry Daly
Darren Bratten
Original Assignee
Dublin Institute Of Technology
Priority date (The priority date is an assumption and is not a legal conclusion. Google has not performed a legal analysis and makes no representation as to the accuracy of the date listed.)
Filing date
Publication date
Priority to GB1209846.3 priority Critical
Priority to GBGB1209846.3A priority patent/GB201209846D0/en
Application filed by Dublin Institute Of Technology filed Critical Dublin Institute Of Technology
Publication of WO2013178819A1 publication Critical patent/WO2013178819A1/en

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Classifications

    • GPHYSICS
    • G06COMPUTING; CALCULATING; COUNTING
    • G06TIMAGE DATA PROCESSING OR GENERATION, IN GENERAL
    • G06T7/00Image analysis
    • G06T7/0002Inspection of images, e.g. flaw detection
    • GPHYSICS
    • G06COMPUTING; CALCULATING; COUNTING
    • G06KRECOGNITION OF DATA; PRESENTATION OF DATA; RECORD CARRIERS; HANDLING RECORD CARRIERS
    • G06K9/00Methods or arrangements for reading or recognising printed or written characters or for recognising patterns, e.g. fingerprints
    • G06K9/00362Recognising human body or animal bodies, e.g. vehicle occupant, pedestrian; Recognising body parts, e.g. hand
    • GPHYSICS
    • G06COMPUTING; CALCULATING; COUNTING
    • G06TIMAGE DATA PROCESSING OR GENERATION, IN GENERAL
    • G06T7/00Image analysis
    • G06T7/90Determination of colour characteristics
    • GPHYSICS
    • G06COMPUTING; CALCULATING; COUNTING
    • G06TIMAGE DATA PROCESSING OR GENERATION, IN GENERAL
    • G06T2207/00Indexing scheme for image analysis or image enhancement
    • G06T2207/10Image acquisition modality
    • G06T2207/10024Color image
    • GPHYSICS
    • G06COMPUTING; CALCULATING; COUNTING
    • G06TIMAGE DATA PROCESSING OR GENERATION, IN GENERAL
    • G06T2207/00Indexing scheme for image analysis or image enhancement
    • G06T2207/30Subject of image; Context of image processing
    • G06T2207/30196Human being; Person

Abstract

The present application relates to a method and apparatus for ensuring protective clothing compliance. The method acquires an image of a person attired in protective clothing and then eliminates certain colours before determining whether the person is correctly attired.

Description

A METHOD AND APPARATUS FOR PROTECTIVE CLOTHING COMPLIANCE

Background

Field of the Application

The present invention relates to a method and apparatus for ensuring protective clothing compliance. Description of Prior Art

Protective clothing is used extensively in certain industries and more particularly is used in so-called clean rooms where manufacturing operations are carried out in predetermined environments and under specific operating conditions. This is particularly the situation in the pharmaceutical, semi- conductor, medical device, and food industries. The correct wearing of the clothing used in such clean rooms is of vital and paramount importance for their efficient operation. Accordingly, correct gowning is of major concern in these industries. Even highly trained and regulated clean room area workers do sometimes neglect to wear the required clothing. Additionally, during use they often expose, for example, their skin inadvertently or indeed deliberately. What must be understood is that most workers will on average leave and reenter the clean room 3 times during a shift. Even the most conscientious workers are likely to fail to dress correctly at all times. The reasons can be laid down to simple human error. Companies often institute elaborate gowning procedures and indeed even insist on each worker be checked by a co-worker. Still problems arise if for no other reason than the "checking" worker does not spot some form of non-compliance.

It is appreciated that the technology in respect of image recognition has been developed exponentially over the last few years. For example US patent noted that this is actually a detection of skin tones.

Then US patent specification number US 5, 805, 718 (Sharp Kavuchiki Kaisha) describes a method of measuring in a non-contact manner a clothing amount of the human skin being in a state in which the human body is clothed this is done by means of temperature imaging technology.

Real-time clothing recognition has also been investigated and applied for realtime surveillance videos for customer profile analysis such as for fashion recommendations. Such a system is described in US patent application publication US 201 1/027 4314 (NEC laboratories America Inc), the entire contents of which are herein incorporated by reference. Accordingly there has been a considerable amount of work carried out in this area but surprisingly, nobody has considered applying such technology to clean room clothing compliance.

The present invention is directed towards providing an apparatus and method which will in some way assist in overcoming these problems. Summary

According to the invention there is provided a protective clothing compliance detection apparatus comprising:

an optical image receiving array, including body image detection means and colour pixel detection means and,

image processing means including means to eliminate acceptable colours detected.

In accordance with the invention there is also provided a method of protective clothing compliance comprising the steps of:

detecting the body image;

providing the image into predetermined anatomical sections; anatomical section; and,

accepting or rejecting on the basis of the quantum of other colour detected for each anatomical section. The advantage of eliminating specific colours for specific parts of the body to be detected, namely the anatomical sections, means that all that is detected are those colours that should not be there for that particular section. Thus, for example, if a major problem, as it usually is, is that of skin exposure, then if there is skin exposure, the only colours detected will be various shades of skin. Accordingly the problem of detecting various skin shades is totally eliminated.

The method according to the invention will in many instances be carried out for one prescribed pose by the worker. Essentially, all that is required is to provide a suitable scanning system, which is suitably a conventional digital camera providing an image of a worker. In this way, all of the parts of the body of the worker are examined.

Depending on the particular industry and PPE in use, multiple scanners and images from different angles may be used to check correct application of cleanroom clothing.

Additionally it is envisaged workers may be required to assume more than one pose.

One can envisage situations where for example a worker is required to carry out repetitive stretching operations which could cause disturbance of the gowns.

Accordingly in many instances it could be necessary to have such an operation repeated during scanning.

In another method in accordance with the invention the protective clothing is provided with detectable indicia whereby the correct orientation of a particular garment or portion of a garment on a workers body can be detected. This can were white this would be an easy colour to eliminate. If however, for example, the clothing was also to include a separate glove which needed to be drawn up the user's arm beyond their elbow joint, it might be difficult to detect. If then a distinctively coloured stripe were to be incorporated in the glove then incorrect wearing would be immediately determined.

Description of drawings The invention will be more clearly understood from the following description of some embodiments thereof, given by way of example only with reference to the accompanying drawings, in which:

Fig. 1 is a perspective view of a lobby of a clean room and associated checking and gowning rooms;

Fig. 2 is a view of an exemplary image of a person taken during the carrying out of the invention; Fig. 3 is an example of the type of imaging processing software modules which can be used in accordance with the invention;

Fig. 4 is a flow diagram of one method of carrying out the invention; and Fig. 5 is an exemplary embodiment of a protective garment according to an aspect of the present application.

Detailed Description

An advantage of the present application is that it may readily be installed into and employed into existing workplace environments such as for example clean room situations. is illustrated is a gowning room indicated generally by the reference numeral 2, a checking room indicated generally by the reference numeral 3, where the invention is carried out and a portion of a clean room, namely a lobby indicated generally by the reference numeral 4.

The gowning room 2 is a locker room where workers change in an out of their outdoor clothing into the gown required for working in the clean room. The gowning room 2 leads directly into the checking room 3 which as would generally be familiar to those skilled in the art houses a mirror (typically full length) 10 in which a worker can inspect themselves before proceeding into the clean room. In order to inspect themselves, it will be appreciated that the users must position themselves correctly with respect to the mirror in order that they can view themselves correctly. The present application takes advantage of this and mounts an optical image receiving array 1 1 , which may be a conventional digital camera. The optical image receiving array beside the mirror acquires an image of the worker as they stand in front of the mirror. As the worker is positioned to view themselves correctly, the camera also captures an appropriate image. The optical image receiving array may be triggered to acquire an image of the worker by a sensor, for example a PIR sensor covering the area in front of the mirror or a pressure sensor such as a pressure mat provided on the floor. In this embodiment there is illustrated 1 mirror 10 and one optical image receiving array 1 1 . The optical image receiving array is connected to various equipment, not shown but referred to generally as an image processor, which allows the processing of the image, as will be described in more detail below. From there the worker passes into the lobby 4 for the clean room itself which is not illustrated.

In use, the worker first enters the gowning room 2 where he or she sheds some of their outer garments and then dons the necessary protective clothing. When the gowning is finished, then the worker proceeds to the checking room optical image receiving array comprises a digital camera. The image is as illustrated in Fig 2. It will be appreciated that the image 50 in reality would be in colour but for the requirements of the patent application have been presented as a line drawing in which a person is shown in protective clothing 54 with an opening provided in the clothing for a part of their face 52, for example the region including their eyes and nose. In the exemplary image, it will be appreciated that the user is not wearing protective clothing on their hands 56a and 56b. When the image has been processed the worker is either passed or failed. Fig 3 illustrates some of the image processing modules used. In particular, a user interface 60 is shown in which an image of a worker, as shown in Figure 2, has been processed and is displayed in one section 61 of the interface. It will be appreciate that the acquired image is suitably of the whole user including their feet which have been omitted for ease of illustration from Figure 1 . The processed image 61 is one in which a number of colours have been removed as will be explained in greater detail below. As a result there are three areas remaining in which colour is presented 62a, 62b and 64 corresponding to regions of the face 64 and hands 62a, 62b. A second section of the interface provides a measurement for each of these areas, i.e. face 69, hands 67a, 67b where the measurement is a measurement of the amount of colour present in each area. A further area presents the results 68, 66a, 66b as pass/fail for each of the face and left and right hands. For example as the interface is showing the results for the person in figure 2, the face pass/fail indicator may be green indicating a pass, whereas the pass/fail indicators for the hands 66a, 66b may be red indicating a failure, i.e. because the user is not wearing gloves in figure 2. In practise, the user may simply be presented with a pass fail result and not with the additional material of the processed image 61 an calculation results 67a, 67b, 69. The worker then has to if failed, resolve the problem with the gowning and restart the tests. Finally, when the suitably dressed worker enters the clean room lobby 4, he or she carries out the further cleaning operations required prior to entering the clean room itself. worker in the checking room 3. The warning for the worker of failure in addition to a visual signal, for example features 66a, 66b, and 68 on the optical image receiving array 1 1 may also include audible or other warning signals. Referring now to Fig 4 there is illustrated one method of carrying out the invention in flow diagram form. In the gowning up step 20 the worker enters the locker room and dons the required protective clothing. The worker then enters the checking room in step 21 and in step 22 provides a visual examination of him or herself in a mirror taking up a first prescribed pose.

Then in step 23 of the optical image processing array 1 1 first detects the body image in the first pose required and then the processing equipment, not shown, divides the image into predetermined anatomical sections. As described previously, the optical image processing array may be triggered to capture a photograph of the worker, i.e. detect the body image by means of a suitable sensor, e.g. PIR sensor or pressure mat. Alternatively, the optical image processing array may be triggered by the user, e.g. by pressing a button or for example using voice recognition.

During an initial calibration stage carried out when installing the system, images of the background present will have been captured and the colours analysed to determine the background colours present, i.e. the colour of the wall or other features present behind a user. It will be appreciated that generally walls in such environments tend to be white or a neutral colour.

In use, the optical image processing equipment eliminates these predetermined and preset background colours for the image so as to account for background features or images.

The image processing equipment the suitably segments the image into different sections or regions. Thus in the exemplary image of Figure 2, three regions are illustrated 52, 56a, 56b corresponding to the head and hand regions of the person. It will be appreciated that these regions will generally be mirror.

Whilst, Figure 2 illustrates three regions, the image may be broken up into more. Thus for example there could be two additional regions for the feet and one or more regions for the torso.

In the case of the torso, the test would be not necessarily that the worker is wearing their clothing but that the zip is fully closed. In the context of the feet, it will be appreciated that foot covers may be a different colour to the rest of the suit as for example may the gloves.

Accordingly for each region, the method eliminates colours that it expects to be there. Thus in the case of an environment in which workers wear white protective clothing, the system may eliminate colour content that is white or a shade of white, for example as might be caused by shadows or wrinkles in the clothing. Whereas if the colour of the glovesVfoot covers is blue, the method would seek to eliminate blue and associated shades of blue from the hand\foot regions.

It will be appreciated that the ideal scenario is that all of the colours present are distinctive from flesh tones or hair colour and that this is generally the case. Then the processing equipment in step 26 generates a result which is the result of an acceptance or rejection on the basis of the quantum of colour remaining for that anatomical section. Different sections may have different thresholds for acceptance or rejection, i.e. different pass/fail thresholds. For example, the hands where no skin should be visible would have a low pass/fail threshold, whereas the face region where skin is expected to be visible would have a higher threshold.

In step 27 the result is communicated to the worker or staff member. If the worker receives a correct result he or she enters the cleanroom in step 28. If however the staff member receives an incorrect gowning message here, the she receives its favourable communication in step 27.

In addition, the system may be configured to prevent the user entering the cleanroom, for example by means of a magnetic lock or similar mechanism preventing the user opening the door until they have passed the inspection. If the worker has been accepted in step 23 the worker may enter the clean room lobby in step 24. It will be appreciated that for simplicity only 1 pose is required in this particular description of the method according to the invention but in fact a worker could be required to carry out much more inspections.

Essentially, the optical image processing software is relatively standard and well-known. For example, in manufacturing the prototype scanning equipment as sold under the trademark LABVIEW by National Instruments Corporation of Austin Texas USA were used with suitable and minor modifications. The major impact of this invention is in the manner in which the colours are eliminated in the image processing depending on the anatomical feature being scanned. Clearly different considerations will apply to a hand as against a face, which while both display essentially the same colour skin in one case, for example the former the detection of skin would immediately cause a rejection while with the latter a certain amount of skin showing may be acceptable. Clearly however on the face, a worker displaying a beard would be considered unacceptable.

It is also envisaged in accordance with the invention that specific indicia such as different coloured stripes may be incorporated in to the workers garments to facilitate identification of correct placement. Examples of this have already been discussed above. Thus, for example, as shown in Figure 5 a protective garment may be provided for use with the previously described detection apparatus where the garment is provided with an indicia detectable by the detection apparatus for ensuring the correct presence or orientation or both of a particular garment or portion of a garment on a person's body. The protective one colour, and thus for example may be green or blue.

Whilst the garment shown is a glove 100, it will be appreciated that it is not restricted to use just in a glove and may for example be shoe covers, hoods, masks or similar. In the exemplary garment, the detectable indicia comprises a distinctively coloured stripe 102 compared to the substantially one colour employed in the rest of the garment 100. The detectable indicia is suitably provided toward the open end of the glove, particularly where the glove is sized to be drawn up a person's arm beyond their elbow joint. To avoid confusion with a person's hand, the detectable indicia may be selected to be a colour that is distinctive from skin colours, for example a green or blue. A specific anatomical region could be defined for the elbow region and rather than a pass or fail for this region based on the presence of unwanted colours, it would be based on the actual presence of a desired colour, i.e. the pass is determined by exceeding a quantum threshold rather than being below a threshold.

The Application may be used with other systems and further enhancements may be made which will now be described generally.

In a first enhancement, the system may detect the identity of the user, e.g. by the user identifying themselves by swiping a badge, by facial recognition in the captured image or from their ID card which may have a suitable identifier, e.g. a barcode or RFID tag which may be read by an appropriate reader.

In such a situation, the results of inspections may be stored and associated with individual users along with for example times and dates. This information may then be mined to identify particular individuals who may require retraining to ensure compliance or to identify times or days where particular attention may be required, for example after a meal. It may also be used to demonstrate compliance with standards or regulatory requirements, for example FDA requirements.

The system may also be used, in addition to the identity sensing or separately, in conjunction with an infra red camera or detector to identify further problems where there might be a hole in a suit. Additionally, it may be used to take a measurement of the body temperature of the worker to prevent sick employees, e.g. those with an elevated temperature from entering the clean room. Whilst the present description has largely been described in the context of white garments, it will be appreciate d that the application is not so restricted and the main consideration is that the garments are distinctive from skin tones. In this specification terms comprise and include and any necessary grammatical variations thereof are to be considered interchangeable and to be awarded the widest possible interpretation.

Further, the scope of the invention is not limited to the embodiments described above which may be varied in both construction and detail. As an example, whilst the present application has been described with respect to clean room environments, it may be used in other similar situations, including for example food manufacturing, hospitals, bio hazard facilities, nuclear power plants.

Additionally, the method as described above may be employed to not just detect for colours that should not be present, for example skin tones, but also to detect for colours that should be present. For example, in a construction site a high viz vest, helmet and gloves might be considered mandatory and accordingly the head, torso and hand regions could be checked to confirm the presence of predetermined colours associated with each.

Claims

A protective clothing compliance detection apparatus comprising:
an optical image receiving array for acquiring an image of a person in protective clothing and,
an image processor configured to
a) segment the image into predetermined anatomical sections;
b) eliminate background colours from the acquired image;
c) eliminate certain predetermined colours from at least one anatomical section; and
e) perform a determination for compliance for at least one anatomical section comprising accepting or rejecting on the basis of the quantum of other colour detected for each anatomical section.
A protective clothing compliance detection apparatus according to claim 1 , wherein the quantum for at least one of the anatomical sections is compared with a threshold for that anatomical section to determine acceptance or rejection.
A protective clothing compliance detection apparatus according to claim 1 or claim 2, further comprising a sensor for detecting the presence of a person to trigger the acquiring an image of the person.
A protective clothing compliance detection apparatus according to any preceding claim, wherein different predetermined colours are eliminated for different anatomical section.
5. A protective clothing compliance detection apparatus according to any one of claims 1 to 4, wherein the elimination of background colours is performed by reference to previously saved background colours. 5, wherein the background colours are saved when installing the apparatus or in a subsequent calibration process.
A gowning room comprising the clothing compliance detection apparatus of any preceding claim, wherein the optical image receiving array is positioned with a mirror in which the person can view themselves.
A gowning room comprising the clothing compliance detection apparatus of any one of claims 1 -6, wherein the optical image receiving array is integrated with a mirror in which the person can view themselves.
A gowning room according to claim 7 or claim 8, wherein the mirror is provided on a first vertical surface and the person during detection is positioned between this first vertical surface and a second vertical surface and wherein the second vertical surface is a neutral colour selected to allow for the ready detection of the body shape and where the neutral colour is stored in the protective clothing compliance detection apparatus as a background colour.
10. A computer implemented method of ensuring protective clothing compliance by a person, the method comprising the steps of:
acquiring an image of the person;
providing the image into predetermined anatomical sections;
eliminating background colours;
eliminating certain predetermined background colours for each anatomical section; and,
accepting or rejecting on the basis of the quantum of other colour detected for each anatomical section. A protective garment for use with a detection apparatus for ensuring the the detection apparatus.
12. A protective garnnent according to claim 10, wherein the protective garment is substantially one colour.
13. A protective garment according to claim 1 1 , wherein the detectable indicia is a feature having a different colour to the substantially one colour.
14. A protective garment according to claim 1 1 or claim 12, wherein the substantially one colour is substantially white or off white.
15. A protective garment according to any one of claims 1 1 to 13, wherein the garment is a glove.
16. A protective garment according to claim 14, wherein the detectable indicia comprises a distinctively coloured stripe compared to the substantially one colour.
17. A protective garment according to claim 14 or 15, wherein the detectable indicia is provided toward the open end of the glove.
18. A protective garment according to any one of claims 10 to 16, wherein the glove is sized to be drawn up a person's arm beyond their elbow joint.
19. A protective garment according to any one of claims 10 to 18, wherein the detectable indicia is a colour that is distinctive from skin colours.
PCT/EP2013/061334 2012-06-01 2013-06-01 A method and apparatus for protective clothing compliance WO2013178819A1 (en)

Priority Applications (2)

Application Number Priority Date Filing Date Title
GB1209846.3 2012-06-01
GBGB1209846.3A GB201209846D0 (en) 2012-06-01 2012-06-01 A method and apparatus for protective clothing compliance

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WO2013178819A1 true WO2013178819A1 (en) 2013-12-05

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Cited By (3)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
CN106097312A (en) * 2016-06-01 2016-11-09 同济大学 A kind of glove based on machine vision tear and greasy dirt detection method
WO2018109048A1 (en) * 2016-12-16 2018-06-21 Glaxosmithkline Intellectual Property Development Limited A clothing compliance detection apparatus, and associated clothing standard enforcement apparatus
US10282668B2 (en) * 2017-03-09 2019-05-07 Thomas Danaher Harvey Devices and methods to detect compliance with regulations

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US5805718A (en) 1994-10-07 1998-09-08 Sharp Kabushiki Kaisha Clothing amount measuring apparatus and method using image processing
US6343141B1 (en) 1996-10-08 2002-01-29 Lucent Technologies Inc. Skin area detection for video image systems
EP1215618A2 (en) * 2000-12-14 2002-06-19 Eastman Kodak Company Image processing method for detecting human figures in a digital image
US20110007950A1 (en) * 2009-07-11 2011-01-13 Richard Deutsch System and method for monitoring protective garments
US20110273592A1 (en) * 2010-05-07 2011-11-10 Sony Corporation Image processing device, image processing method, and program
US20110274314A1 (en) 2010-05-05 2011-11-10 Nec Laboratories America, Inc. Real-time clothing recognition in surveillance videos
WO2011156474A2 (en) * 2010-06-10 2011-12-15 Brown University Parameterized model of 2d articulated human shape

Patent Citations (7)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US5805718A (en) 1994-10-07 1998-09-08 Sharp Kabushiki Kaisha Clothing amount measuring apparatus and method using image processing
US6343141B1 (en) 1996-10-08 2002-01-29 Lucent Technologies Inc. Skin area detection for video image systems
EP1215618A2 (en) * 2000-12-14 2002-06-19 Eastman Kodak Company Image processing method for detecting human figures in a digital image
US20110007950A1 (en) * 2009-07-11 2011-01-13 Richard Deutsch System and method for monitoring protective garments
US20110274314A1 (en) 2010-05-05 2011-11-10 Nec Laboratories America, Inc. Real-time clothing recognition in surveillance videos
US20110273592A1 (en) * 2010-05-07 2011-11-10 Sony Corporation Image processing device, image processing method, and program
WO2011156474A2 (en) * 2010-06-10 2011-12-15 Brown University Parameterized model of 2d articulated human shape

Cited By (3)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
CN106097312A (en) * 2016-06-01 2016-11-09 同济大学 A kind of glove based on machine vision tear and greasy dirt detection method
WO2018109048A1 (en) * 2016-12-16 2018-06-21 Glaxosmithkline Intellectual Property Development Limited A clothing compliance detection apparatus, and associated clothing standard enforcement apparatus
US10282668B2 (en) * 2017-03-09 2019-05-07 Thomas Danaher Harvey Devices and methods to detect compliance with regulations

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