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9 Benefits and Applications of Machine Vision Systems

Sep 14, 2021

Machine vision systems have continued to grow in popularity: it is a deceptively simple technology that is actually quite complicated. At its most basic, a machine vision system is a computer that can perceive its environment using one or more video cameras and digital signal processing. The goal is to solve real-world problems, but a vision system can in fact do so much more. From helping your business scale to creating a safer work environment, you’ll find the benefits to be many.
Machine Vision Systems - SAAB RDS

9 Benefits and Applications of Machine Vision Systems

1. Eliminates Human Errors

The human eye is remarkable but not infallible. While vision is ideal for qualitative interpretation, machine vision can successfully measure product quantities thanks to its accuracy, repeatability, and speed. To illustrate, a vision system implemented on a production line can inspect hundreds or even thousands of parts with each minute.

When paired with high-resolution cameras, machine vision systems can also inspect object details too small for discernment by the human eye. Machine vision can additionally eliminate operator fatigue and variances between different operators. These qualities can greatly reduce, if not eliminate, the risk of disassembled products and/or subpar components.

2. Lowers Costs

A vision system can improve manufacturing speed and scale down the amount of labor necessary to operate the equipment. Equally important, it can reduce the scrap rate so fewer materials get wasted – and, in the process, reduce your overhead.

Regardless of how parts are manufactured, tolerances exist for all the dimensions. Machine vision can help fine-tune processes and improve results. High-priced components, in particular, need to be manufactured with precision; otherwise, failure can cost thousands of dollars. It is, therefore, crucial to implement the checks and balances offered by a vision system.

3. Reduces Downtime

By removing physical contact between a test system and manufactured parts, a vision system safeguards against part damage. It also reduces the time and fees required to fix mechanical components as wear and tear take their toll. Operation times increase accordingly as machines need less attention, meaning you can meet production deadlines with ease and consistency.


4. Increases Throughput

This point is a continuation of the previous in that reduced downtime inherently leads to increased throughput. But a vision system takes this concept a few steps further. It can deliver corrective commands roughly one second faster than even trained operators can. This reduces the need to manually correct a system and helps stabilize productivity levels.


5. Enhances Safety

Because machine vision reduces human involvement in the manufacturing process, it creates an overall safer work environment. Employees are less likely to suffer injuries when operating bulky, powerful machines. Likewise, workers are prevented from contaminating clean rooms while simultaneously reducing their exposure to hazardous parts and materials.

6. Identifies Print Defects

It can be difficult at best to identify printing anomalies, including incorrect color shades, blemished prints, or missing letters. But a vision system handles this task with ease. A master or golden image is first inputted into the system. That image is then used as a comparison for all manufactured components. Any deviation from the master is immediately flagged for correction.


7. Takes Accurate Measurements

This application involves accurately determining an object’s dimensions. A vision system can locate and measure certain points on an image, including diameter, radius, distance, and depth. For practical purposes, this application might be used to identify the inner diameter of an engine cylinder bore or measure a bottle’s liquid fill level. Such data can be obtained using either 2D or 3D cameras.


8. Detects Flaws

As you might have already guessed, machine vision can detect product abnormalities like surface dents and scratches. The key is to carefully apply detection boundaries to ensure “acceptable” flaws are distinguished from those that are “unacceptable.” But not to worry – machine vision is ideal for these tasks because the system operates on examples rather than stringent rules.


9. Locates Objects

A vision system is commonly used to locate objects in such applications as robotic guidance. To illustrate, the goal may be to locate the coordinates or position of a particular object. This information is then used to pick up the object or perform another process that is location-dependent.

Machine vision is multi-functional and can be applied in a number of ways to manufacturing processes. The key is in choosing the right technology for your sector. Fortunately, you don’t have to make this decision alone. We can help to not only simplify your needs but also make the transition to a vision system as seamless as possible. Learn more by contacting SAAB RDS today.