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Combining robots and machine vision

03 June 2019

IVS have combined artificially intelligent machine vision with cutting-edge robot automation to provide a flexible automated vision inspection cell.

High definition camera technology combined with LED lighting and laser projectors allow large products to be inspected at speed with high precision, reducing the need for inspection operators in automated production lines. Such solutions are critical to drive UK productivity within manufacturing and for the drive towards fully flexible manufacturing & Industry 4.0 production control.

Kawasaki Precision Machinery (KPM) approached IVS about developing a fully automated vision inspection system for multiple parts on their dual pump assembly line. In total, six different parts with a total of 63 variants require precision inspection. Historically a human operator would be used for the inspection of such parts, but even utilising 200 percent manual inspection quality cannot be assured. The parts include stoppers, needle bearings, valve plates, and three different shafts. The inspection criteria include measuring parts for tolerance checks, verification of the correct types and presence verification of critical build components.

The large number of parts and variants presents a common problem in the world of automated vision inspection as most systems are designed to inspect only a single part with minimal variants. Creating flexibility in system capability generally requires adding equipment and complexity to the system in the form of supplementary sensors, actuators, controllers, and tooling – not to mention the additional programming and system training. All these further complexities add exponential costs to projects, often making the single “all inclusive” solution more expensive than several “individual part” solutions.

Read the full article in the June issue of DPA

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