Machine Visions Systems

In today's age of high tech security and protection, machine vision systems perform a yeoman service by providing inspection and surveillance of the production floor in factories and assembly plants etc. These vision systems are normally equipped with: an integrated camera, image capture function, processing capabilities, storage function, image analysis system and a control system. Some common types of machine vision systems used in industrial applications are vision engines, modular based systems and turnkey projects. Machine vision systems involve various types of functions such as optics, mechanical engineering, computer science and industrial automation.

Machine vision systems basically use image processing software and digital cameras to do the same types of inspections that people do. They are quite effective and helpful for high-speed visual inspections, 24-hour operation facilities, repeatability of measurements and high magnification.

Machine vision systems depend on computer networks to control other types of manufacturing equipment such as robotic arms. Most types of machine vision systems are programmed to do repetitive, specific single tasks such as searching for surface defects, counting items on a conveyor belt and reading things such as serial numbers.

Most machine vision systems consists of items such as computer software, lighting, a network connection, an optical sensor, a camera or digital camera system and a frame grabber if you are using a conventional camera system. The computer software is used to processes the images and the lighting is designed to highlight the areas you are inspecting. A computer network connection is needed to process the inspection results.
The optical sensor is used to send signals to the camera to take photos of important items as they pass under the camera and lighting.

Some important specifications that need to be considered when searching for machine vision systems are inspection rate, product speed, number of cameras or rate of images processed, the processor speed and data storage capacity. With increased automation, machine vision systems employ a host of high tech gadgetry such as optical microscopes, thermal rays, and magnetic imaging, etc.

These machine vision systems are used extensively in pharmaceutical packaging, inspection of tools and dies, and baggage sorting at airports. They are also used extensively in barcode sorting and biomedical applications.

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