Machine Vision Technology
31. maj 2011 Machine Vision Technology SSI SCHAEFER offers expertise in key IT technology
SSI Schaefer extends in-house IT system expertise to include machine vision technology. Customers stand to gain from the technological benefits of industrial image processing in automation, quality checks through innovative product developments and use of fewer interfaces.
SSI Schaefer is continuing to build on its IT development integration expertise in industrial image processing. Its overall objective is to identify and tap into new logistical uses for what is known as machine vision technology. “We have been working with machine vision technology for more than four years now and have already developed numerous innovations for automated order picking, sequencing and quality assurance by combining our expertise in this mechanical vision, machine control and logistical applications for our customers,” explains Dr. Max Winkler, head of development at SSI Schaefer. “We now boast extensive in-house know-how in all three fields which is unique in the sector. As a technology leader in intralogistics, we will use this to generate new system functionalities with new developments and produce additional added-value for our customers.”
Industrial image processing is now one of the key technologies in automation. Its use in the pharmaceutical and automotive industry has become standard practice when checking components critical to safety. Machine vision technology can be used for tasks such as intelligently controlling machines, automating processes and verifying and checking components and items. Corresponding systems also check quality criteria and provide valuable data for process optimisation. The technology can therefore potentially be used in industrial production and intralogistics for tasks ranging from fully automatic palleting and depalleting, through sequence, position and orientation checks to quality assurance including complete documentation and traceability.
Using machine vision technology, SSI Schaefer has now implemented system concepts such as Schaefer Case Picking (SCP), the Order Verifier and the Schaefer Robo-Pick (SRP). Integrated image processing makes e.g. the Robo-Pick and SSI Order Verifier the fastest fully automatic order-picking systems in their market sectors. The various image processing systems in the Schaefer Case Picking concept make distribution centres possible which deliver a customised mix of products fully automatically. Machine vision allows robots to fully exploit their goods distribution performance, thereby relieving staff of the arduous task of pallet order picking. For the user, this translates into efficiently automated and monitored production processes. Quality assurance and order picking become an integrated process, resulting in minimised error rates and greatly reduced staffing, energy and freight costs. The potential savings ensure a rapid return on investment (ROI).
Another benefit of SSI Schaefer image processing technologies is that they are designed as independent subsystems with a flexible interface architecture, allowing them to be integrated in the intralogistics systems supplied by SSI Schaefer in many different ways. Not only can the systems be smoothly integrated into existing structures, they can also be quickly and conveniently adapted to modified production processes and model changes.
The intelligent teach-in feature of machine vision technology from SSI Schaefer eliminates any lengthy teaching phase for the products to be handled. A larger range of products can thereby be flexibly detected. And the technology is perfectly aligned to the requirements of production logistics and intralogistics. Appropriately equipped systems are, for example, perfectly suited to rapid, complex automation and test tasks, ensuring less downtime, better process stability and great efficiency in the use of resources.
By further extending its development and integration expertise in machine vision technology, the SSI Schaefer Group is now able to offer customers the linkage they need between software, intralogistics hardware and industrial image processing from one source. “SSI Schaefer has added an important future-focused technology to its range of products and services,” sums up Dr. Winkler. “By individually tailoring the technology to customer specific applications, we can produce numerous options for intelligently automated processes, improved quality, greater reliability and improved process reliability and economic viability.”