In this blog we are going to explain different applications of computer vision in different industrial sectors. This technology has many possibilities in the industry, so we are going to tell you what are the types, applications and benefits that computer vision can provide in the industry.
What is computer vision?
As we have already explained in other posts, computer vision systems acquire information from the environment in the form of images, which can be of many types, process it and analyze it. To understand it, you can think about how we understand our environment thanks to our senses. In this case, the eyes help us to obtain information from the world around us, and vision systems perform the same task to digitize that information so that it can be processed by a machine.
To obtain these images, sensors are placed, which can be of different types: 2D cameras, hyperspectral cameras, 3D cameras, etc. All of them provide us with environmental data that are subsequently processed to obtain the information we need.
Computer Vision systems are not conceived as an isolated system that is not related to the rest of the elements of a factory, but rather, they are integrated with the rest of the processes receiving and sending information.
Types of computer vision for each sector
Each sector presents, in general, different cases and needs, therefore, we are going to tell you, what are the possibilities that vision systems have in some industrial sectors. Computer vision is already present in many of them and solves problems of quality, metrology, identification, etc.
In this sector, computer vision is used as a tool for quality control of products. Hyperspectral vision, for example, allows elements to be classified by their chemical composition, which is really interesting when it comes to detecting intruders, in the food packaging phases. On the other hand, it can also be used to know the quality of the fruits, ripening, diseases, among many other things. In addition to hyperspectral vision, traditional RGB vision systems can be applied in more common applications, code reading etc.
In the automotive industry, computer vision is used mainly for inspections and quality control in manufacturing, assembly, etc. operations. Flaw detection applications are also interesting, both in paint and in presses, as they allow the detection of visual defects in the early stages of production. These applications are usually based on artificial intelligence algorithms that allow the classification of images with and without defects.
In this sector, computer vision is used to inspect the presence or absence of markers. Such as, for example, labels, printing of lot numbers or expiration dates, correct placement of caps or control of the liquid level of the product.
In the electronics sector, computer vision is used mainly to inspect assemblies and the welding of components. In addition, it streamlines the repair and production processes of defective components. Lastly, computer vision allows the handling and identification of components quickly and reliably.
These are just some of the sectors in which computer vision can be applied. As you can see, the applications can be extended to many other sectors that can also benefit from the advantages of a vision system.
What are the advantages of computer vision systems in the industry?
Vision systems allow inspection and quality control tasks to be carried out that provide improvements to production processes. They allow, detect errors, carry out a much more exhaustive control, increase productivity and inspect 100% of the production among many other things.
Next, we tell you some of the advantages of applying computer vision systems in production lines.
- Increase in productivity: Applying vision systems to control production means an increase in the quality of the final product. By detecting defective elements, they can be eliminated from the production process in early stages. In many cases, this early detection also reduces costs since the defective product is detected before its value increases.
- Decrease in the loss of materials: If we detect defective elements in the early stages, we prevent them from continuing in the production chain, increasing their value and using materials that would later have to be discarded.
- Cost reduction: By increasing productivity and reducing the loss of materials we obtain a better use of available resources. This leads to a significant reduction in production costs that will be reflected in a reduction in total production costs.
- Better quality of the final product: Lastly and most importantly, the final product will be of higher quality since inspection and controls will avoid failures and possible errors in production.
Some applications of computer vision in the industry
- Computer vision for the detection of defects and quality control: As we have already told you throughout the post, computer vision systems based on artificial intelligence are capable, once they have been trained, of detecting defects. Defects can range from metal cracks, paint defects, burrs, incorrect prints, and many other options. The defects that they are able to detect can go down to less than 0.05 mm. Training is carried out by feeding the system images with the defect and without the defect.
- Metrology: With computer vision, measurements of up to microns of precision can be made. These applications are performed in both 2D and 3D using cameras and lasers. The advances that are made in the equipment and sensors of computer vision allow obtaining images with more quality each time. For this reason, these types of systems are used for high precision metrology. With a vision system, down to microns can be measured to detect defects and positioning in a specific part.
- Intrusion detection: Intrusion detection is used mainly in the food sector, for example, in a dried fruit packaging line, we can detect if there are foreign elements such as stones, ceramics, glass and extract them from it. that will bring quality to the product.
- Code reading: The reading of codes and labels, QR, bar codes, batch numbers, allow to identify products and allow product traceability throughout the entire production line.
- Verification of assemblies: Every day more and more complex assemblies are carried out, with more parts or connections. Computer Vision allows us to check, step by step, that each piece is in its place, or at the end of the process, that the final assembly is correct. This application is very useful for the assembly of machinery, equipment, electronic boards or pre-assemblies with great complexity. These systems considerably reduce cycle times for very complex operations and reoperation times.