Can I build a print inspection system?
The packaging industry continues to expand and automate. When one looks at the high cost of turnkey camera solutions from industry providers such as BST, AVT and others, and the reduction in cost of components, building your own system looks like an attractive opportunity. There is an opportunity for converters to lower CapEx costs and for other engineering companies enter a high margin vision niche.
Building a print inspection using off the shelf hardware is the way to go. There is no need to develop proprietary hardware. The improvements made in the past five years alone ave made it easier and reduced costs. However the barrier to entry is the software, as it can be complex to develop without years of experience. The temptation is to use off the shelf machine vision libraries and develop your own. Many have tried only to find 24 months later, it is harder than it looks. Standard machine vision offerings lack the complex requirements of such a high bandwidth application as 100% print inspection. Two 5K cameras in color running at full tilt is over 1 Gbytes per seconds. The Matrox, Cognex and Halcon libraries would fall over at such data rates. The other issue is the additional requirements of handling image stretch, multiple recipes and the host of other capabilities that an operator will require. This the value add that BST, AVT, Isravision and other's offer their clients and have build multi million dollar businesses providing.
Now that OneBoxVision has developed PackFlow, this barrier to entry has been removed. PackFlow is a complete software package enabling system engineers to build an inspection solution using out of the box solutions. We have designed a complete set of print inspection algorithms for defect detection, color monitoring with advanced display options for video.
OneBoxVision has packaged this with hardware from two industry leaders, Chromasens in Germany and BitFlow from the US , so that the integration can be supported using known configurations that have already been tested many times in manufacturing. The PackFlow kit includes an Axion 2XE frame grabber. This is a high performance image processor designed for applications such as print inspection.
Also included in the PackFlow kit are two Chromasens cameras. The base kit includes the 4K AllPixa Pro, but can be upgraded to the 5k, 6K and 7K sensors also. This is a true RGB line scan and is the same cameras used by key German printing OEMs. The benefits of this partnership is that a system integrator is now guaranteed integration support from all three parties. The kit can be extended to include PC's , encoders , LED lighting and all the parts required to build a turnkey solution.
This is a unique offering , and now any engineering department can build an advanced 100% print inspection solution to compete with the global players , generate strong gross margins and all without that large investment in R&D that can be such a high risk.