Engineers at R&D Vision have developed a machine vision system called the SpeedView system, which is used to inspect Heineken beer bottles as they pass through a bottling machine at a facility in Marseille, France.
Green Heineken beer bottles pass through the machine at a rate of 22 bottles/sec (80,000 bottles/hr.). Problems that may arise during this process are not visible to the human eye unless the machine is stopped, which costs both money and time. R&D Vision, a French test and measurement company specializing in integrated imaging, developed the SpeedView mobile analysis system in order to automate the inspection of the bottles.
The system is based on a Mako G-030 camera from Allied Vision, which features an ams Sensor Belgium (CMOSIS) CMV300 CMOS image sensor. This sensor is a 0.3 MPixel global shutter sensor with a 7.4 µm pixel size and Power over Ethernet operation. At full resolution of 644 x 484, the GigE camera captures images at a rate of 309 fps, and even higher if a narrower region of interest is used.
For the inspection process, the image detail was reduced to 300 x 200, enabling the camera to operate at a speed of 1000 fps. At this speed, the SpeedView system records images for up to an hour, according to Allied Vision. Individual recordings can be triggered either manually or by a programmable logic controller (PLC) signal in the camera. Using these recordings, the maintenance team can identify and remedy the cause of failure without unnecessarily interrupting the production process or incurring downtime costs in the thousands of Euros per minute range.
SpeedView fits into a transport case and can reportedly be set up within a few minutes. In addition to the Allied Vision camera, the system features a set with three different lenses, high-intensity illumination, and a mounting bracket. For recording, playback, frame-by-frame analysis, and trigger programming, HIRIS software is used. HIRIS is a modular image acquisition solution developed by R&D Vision. Additionally, the system features an integrated monitor and a control panel.
"By uncovering problems before they affect the final product, users like Heineken can increase the quality level of their production and practically achieve a 0% failure rate," confirmed Francois-Dimitri Mennesson, Export Manager at R&D Vision in France.