Vision 2005 highlights products, applications

Vision components, systems, and integrators were on display in unprecedented numbers at Vision 2005, which was held over three unusually mild November days in Stuttgart, Germany.

Dec 1st, 2005
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Vision components, systems, and integrators were on display in unprecedented numbers at Vision 2005, which was held over three unusually mild November days in Stuttgart, Germany. A record 196 companies and organizations exhibited, up from 182 last year, and attendance was up 10% to 5140. Impressively, the number of visitors coming from outside Germany rose to 33% of the total compared to 25% last year.

“We had more customers on our stand, far more inquiries, and higher expertise than last year,” said Dietmar Ley, chairman of Basler and of the Machine Vision Group of the German Engineering Federation (VDMA), who succinctly summed up what many participants were saying after the show. In answer to a survey, the visitors at the show said they had come to look at all sorts of vision components, and at systems for measurement, quality control, surface inspection, identification of codes and characters, and robot guidance.

Indeed, exhibitors who focused their displays on components did well, but a few exhibitors took a more creative approach by inviting system integrators to set up working models of their systems. Vision Components, for example, had integrators at the front of its booth showing systems inspecting automobile gas filters, cutting salmon filets, and imaging a high-speed web. The integrators could explain their system design and their services, and perhaps generate some business from themselves and Vision Components.

DELIVERING WHAT’S NEXT

In the coming issues of Vision Systems Design you will find articles highlighting many of the most interesting products and applications at Vision 2005. This issue, for example, includes a Product Focus article on one of the most evident developments at the show-the rise of increasingly smart cameras with Gigabit Ethernet interfaces-and features cameras introduced at the show from manufacturers such as Basler, Dalsa, JAI Pulnix, Matrix Vision, Matrox Imaging, Sony Electronics, and Tattile.

Our cover story this month is on a pharmaceutical inspection system that will have a significant impact on drug manufacturing by automating the process of checking drug vials for foreign particles. The ParticleScope System developed by Phoenix Imaging is now under evaluation at several pharmaceutical-equipment builders. The system was unveiled to the pharmaceutical industry at the recent PDA Visual Inspection Forum and is currently being reviewed by several pharmaceutical-equipment builders to implement it in high-speed (150-300 vials/min) inspection systems.

Machine-vision-based systems are not only inspecting pharmaceutical products. They are also at work ensuring the quality of automotive parts. “Our intent [in using vision] is not so much to overcome problems as to prevent them,” says Nigel Holmes at Federal-Mogul, a major supplier of automotive components and systems. Holmes is the subject of this month’s Business Views interview and, as an end-user, his machine-vision needs are precisely those that vision OEMs and system integrators should understand, and those that shows such Vision 2005 already address.

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W. Conard Holton
Editor in Chief
cholton@pennwell.com

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