Machine vision is the ideal tool for robot guidance, allowing visual inspection of the robot working area as well as guidance based on the detected position of a product or component. Vision systems can be used to identify the product in pick and place operations, for example using OCR, barcode reading or other visual cues.
As end-of-line packing is increasingly automated, many factories have discovered that end-of-line packers often provided a final quality inspection of which managers were not aware. Vision systems can carry out this function in addition to robot guidance. In addition, vision systems never tire, never slow down and are consistent between shifts.
MVT is working with a logistics company to provide robot guidance for a supermarket distribution centre. The requirements include identifying the type of crate, the number of crates in the stack and position of the top crate
A further requirement is to read barcodes on the crates to identify the contents. One of the advantages of modern vision systems is that their large number of tools allows ‘multi-tasking’: the ability to carry out several tasks rather than just one. Increasing processor speeds mean that this can be carried out within the cycle time of the rest of the line.