From collaborative robots on the factory floor to critical operational robots in the medical field, robotic technology continues to transform workplaces across many sectors and industries. In 2019, unparalleled levels of developments have also occurred in machine vision, automated inspection, artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning -– none more so than on the factory floor.
Industrial Vision Systems Ltd (IVS), a supplier of vision inspection solutions to industry and provides vision systems for quality control, and robotic vision believes the following technology trends will be prevalent throughout 2020.
Modern Graphical User Interfaces
Users of vision systems on factory floors now demand flexible and contemporary graphical user interfaces. We see the on-going development of yield and process data display, coupled with enhanced statistical process control and multi-language support, as a critical development over the coming year. The ability of a vision system to provide multi-language support offers visualisation of process information displayed in real-time between supported languages. This benefits worldwide customers as well as those manufacturers employing a diverse ethnic workforce, such as this case in the food & drink, printing and packaging industries. Conformance to the Machinery Directive of the European Union requires vision inspection systems to have the ability to switch languages during the automatic operation.
Higher Resolution Cameras and Optics
Coupled with the increased processing power of cloud computing and the remote processing of machine vision algorithms, higher resolution cameras allow more precise inspection of an object; this will become the norm over the coming year. 20-megapixel industrial cameras are now available at reasonable pixel size. This increased accuracy, combined with higher precision optics, allow machine vision systems to exploit the additional resolution provided by such cameras. For customers requiring micron levels measurement and detection, the latest camera developments provide benefits in this area.
Tunable LED Lighting
Lighting is critical to a machine vision system. Development in lighting technology is now embracing the ability to tune the LED level to a continuous spectrum from 400nm, up to 900nm. With spatial and spectral uniformity, the lighting is adjusted according to the application requirement of spectral response expected from the object. For manufacturers setting up factories to Industry 4.0 flexible standards, this ability adds another level of flexibility to the machine vision installation for future products or variants which could run on the production line.
Earl Yardley, Industrial Vision Systems Director, comments: “The development of graphical user interfaces combined with quick access to data and images are driving much of the changes that are currently taking place in vision systems relating to manufacturing. This applies in all sectors, but it is particularly important in high-specification, and highly regulated industries like pharmaceutical and medical device manufacturing where data archiving, traceability and warranty protection are key. I fully expect to see growing demand in this area across many sectors in 2020.”
Launched in 2000, IVS vision systems are used all over the world in automated production processes for inspection, guidance, identification, measurement, tracking and counting. Its systems are reputed to be some of the most innovative and advanced machine vision solutions on the market today, successfully deployed in thousands of systems around the world.