Prevention has become just as important as production in today's manufacturing world. As wonderful as it is to see dollars streaming in as a result of products going out the door, profits can easily be affected if quality or compliance issues arise after products have made their way to the customer. More and more, the costs associated with producing less-than-optimal-quality products - from customer fines and industry fees to product recalls - are compelling businesses to invest in systematic preventative measures to ensure that they continue to see healthy returns for their production efforts.
Machine vision inspection plays a major role in ensuring production quality. Using automated tools such as cameras and software to read barcodes, check labels, and inspect products for defects, vision systems provide the equivalent of having several sets of eyes constantly monitoring your operations, making decisions about which products are up to par and which should be rejected. Many businesses rely on machine vision to automate quality control on their production lines with real success, but as good as a vision system may be, it is only one tool in helping companies maintain accountability for their products and activities in production.
So, what's missing? In a recent webinar (Vision Wrangler: Visualize Production Data across Your Entire Facility) presented by Microscan partner Artemis Vision, engineer and presenter Tom Brennan explains that the ability to make use of the data acquired by machine vision tools is a critical component to establishing an air-tight failure prevention and preparedness plan. " The problem with [vision] systems is that, in most cases, the camera throws out the data," Tom states. " So, you have no way to go back and figure out what was really going on." However, if data is sent to a central system and logged - data either from a barcode that was decoded on a package or from images of products on a line captured by a machine vision camera - you can see how production is progressing in real time and also review historical production events in case issues need to be investigated after a product has left the facility.
Artemis Vision's new turnkey traceability system, Vision Wrangler, makes the centralization and accessibility of production data exceptionally easy by networking machine vision cameras across the entire facility to consolidate data from every corner of production. In addition to using machine vision for quality inspection of each product, Vision Wrangler archives the vision camera's input (information and images) about products, creating a verifiable visual trail of each item throughout the manufacturing process. This step provides key information for track and trace compliance, quality assurance, and process transparency, which prevents unforeseen issues (and unanticipated costs) and provides your team with the peace of mind that comes from a comprehensive vision inspection and process monitoring solution.
|Vision Wrangler not only offers a window to visualize all production data acquired by cameras across the factory floor, but, " because all of the vision systems are networked back to a central server," Tom explains, " it can send out email alerts and text alerts to various parties letting them know what's going on. It can let a maintenance guy know if a critical event happens. So, if a machine goes down, that guy can have a text on his cell phone in seconds, allowing him to more quickly address the problem and help eliminate downtime."|
These days, it's not enough just to press the "go" button on a production line and expect not to be held accountable for what comes out the other side. Production lines can't be allowed to run blind - to maintain cost-effectiveness, it's critical to keep an eye on every item being produced, where it's been, and where it's going. Full visibility of all points in the production process allows companies to get out in front of quality issues and to prevent potentially costly errors from making it out the door.
Is real-time production data obscured from your view? Vision Wrangler offers a better vantage point to data across the entire facility using machine vision systems by Microscan. To learn more about Vision Wrangler by Artemis Vision, check out the webinar Vision Wrangler: Visualize Production Data across Your Entire Facility, now available on demand. Artemis Vision also introduces you to the Vision Wrangler system in this informative video: http://vimeo.com/80955855
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