Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Why use a vision system when a sensor will do?

I’m not here to sell you machine vision; I just want to see the technology used appropriately and well. So part of my mission is to discourage the use of vision when a cheaper sensor will do the job.

That’s a theme picked up in “Consider UV Inspection,” an article published on the Quality Magazine website, November 2nd, 2012. Now, full disclosure and all that, the article was written by Bill Letterle who works for EMX, and EMX, “is one of the world's leading innovators of specialty sensors in the factory and process automation markets.” But that doesn’t mean he’s wrong.

In fact there are a lot of really good hints and tips in the article, like how to check for the presence of clear wrapping materials. Yes, you could figure out a way to do it with a smart camera, but why would you when there’s a sensor readymade for the job?

As an engineer, your job is to solve the problem and move on. A sensor might be just the tool you need to do that.

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