Utilised during product loading and unloading, VisionRobot uses sensors to locate and recognize the products, and communicate the position of their center of gravity in x, y and θ for grabbing the object in motion in the robot's environment.
ScanFat & SliceCheck
It can check the conformity of the products such as their dimensions (height, length, width), appearance and arrangement (distribution, stacking) or the integrity of the pack (sealing, labelling, marking).
Christophe Venaille, business manager, Luceo, told FoodProductionDaily.com the machine is designed for simple (sliced cheese, tray, etc.) and complex (chicken fillet, flowpack bag, etc.) shaped products.
Depending on the product type, the images are acquired in two or three dimensions.
“Vision inspection is an essential complement to automation, Luceo is working to apply the benefits of this technology to the entire production line,” he said.
“Manufacturers already use ScanFat to measure the thickness of fat on their whole hams, or SliceCheck to check the appearance of their sliced products. This technology allows them to identify any product that falls short of their brand image criteria.”
According to Venaille, vision inspection will become widespread over the coming years, not only because this technology is an essential complement to production line automation, but because full inspection of packaging is both more reliable in terms of health security and economical as it can curb scrap.
“The media regularly report incidents occurring in the food and beverage supply chain. Consumers have become increasingly wary of processed products and keep a watchful eye on the quality of what they eat; they are looking for tasty products but will not compromise on health or safety,” he added.
“The pressure is passed onto the supply chain and the manufacturers in the food industry.”
Luceo will exhibit its fourth generation ThermoSecure L food packaging inspection machine that detects and rejects all packaging with poor quality sealing and with labeling or marking errors at Pack Expo in Chicago, next month.
The machine is installed either at the end of the line after the weighing and metal detection stations or in a white room with an IP66 sealing index when the final inspection must be as close as possible to the sealing.
"ThermoSecure machines control the packaging itself, its seal (presence of contaminants, bubbles, wrinkles) and compliance of the labelling on one or several faces (presence of the label, position, orientation, checking of legal wording),” said Venaille.
Sealing is critical
“They provide full contact-free control of food packaging at rates that can reach 300 units per minute.”
He said Luceo’s goal is to address all types of packages and be more efficient in the type of defects found.
“The point is to push further the limits of detection and to cover the whole supply chain: from the arrival of bulk raw materials at the processing plant to packaged finished products,” he added.
“Sealing is a critical control point in food security that is sometimes difficult to master, so full inspection via vision systems tends to be required on production lines.”
Luceo is part of the Tiama group company and is active in Europe and North America where packaging end-of-line automation is mature and where stringent quality standards are demanding.
Clients include; The Campofrio group, processed meat sector, Fratelli Tanzi, cured meat producer, which works with Marks & Spencer, and US company Hausbeck Pickle for detection of leaks on its pickle packaging lines.
The new generation of sensors will be presented on the Luceo booth # S4368, at Pack Expo.