Smart cameras check particle board

Engineers at Siam Riso Wood Products have developed an automated vision system that monitors the quality of particle board using smart cameras supplied by National Instruments Thailand.

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Engineers at Siam Riso Wood Products have developed an automated vision system that monitors the quality of particle board using smart cameras supplied by National Instruments Thailand (http://thailand.ni.com/).

The company manufactures 10,000 particle boards per day, and until the deployment of the NI-based vision system, the boards were inspected manually.

With support from engineers at NI Thailand, a team led by Sarapong Kaney at Siam Riso modified existing particle-board manufacturing equipment from Kvaerner Panel Systems that was not equipped with machine-vision technology.

They retrofitted the machine with three NI 1762 smart cameras, each of which captures three separate areas of the particle board after the surfaces have been polished.

The three cameras -- which perform defect detection in parallel -- are interfaced to an S7 PLC from Siemens (www.automation.siemens.com). If the cameras detect a defect on a board, the PLC is instructed to actuate a sorting mechanism to separate it from the good products.

The inspection system is also able to display the lot number and percentage yield of good and rejected products to an operator through a human-machine interface (HMI). Developed in three months, the system is running 24 hours a day, seven days a week at Siam Riso.

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