Inspection systems play a crucial role in keeping consumers safe, as product contamination can cause harm and has the potential to result in high costs and damage to brands.
Product contamination can cause harm and has the potential to result in high costs and damage to brands. Elisabeth Skoda looks at recent developments and explores the role AI can play to make inspection systems more efficient.
A proactive approach
Different types of inspection systems, whether its vision inspection, metal detecting or X-ray systems, face a range of challenges and have to find a balance between precision and false rejects.
Smart technologies have increasingly been used in inspection technology not just to identify contaminants, but also to improve efficiency, compliance and profitability.
In the era of the Internet of Things (IoT), everything that can be connected will be connected, points out Phil Brown, Managing Director of Fortress Technology Europe and Sparc Systems. Knitting together the extraction of data and bridging the gap between machines and humans to help predict rather than react to all types of production scenarios. Advanced new systems with data collection and paperless test routines are becoming more prevalent.
Manufacturers might opt for a combination metal detector and checkweigher capable of pre-configuring every test by retailer code of practice and product being inspected. As demonstrated by the Raptor series recently launched by Fortress and Sparc, integrated sensors can confirm when a check has been conducted, generating a dated digital due diligence report that is signed by the operative on the screen for full transparency, Mr Brown adds.
In food inspection, the quantity of data tags is fairly small. Yet, this makes it easier to automate the identification of meaningful patterns. When time-series granular data is monitored side by side across a fleet of machines 24/7, it provides production managers with the level of production oversight previously unattainable.
Robust communication must be the starting point of any good digital transformation program. We recently launched a new suite of connectivity software. Comprising turnkey packages like Contact Reporter and Contact Manager, the Industry 4:0-ready package also gives factories a choice in networked data retrieval technologies including OPC/UA Adapter and Ethernet/IP Adapter to facilitate real-time end-to-end production visibility and enhanced Quality Assurance and due diligence, says Mr Brown.
A software-driven approach
This year, Fortress Technology Europe and Sparc Systems are set to launch a system that combines two technologies X-ray and metal detection to provide a more failsafe inspection solution in line with digital transformation.
Sparc engineers have conceived a software-driven solution for inspecting dual density products with an X-ray. The software uses two algorithms working side by side to inspect denser areas of a product, such as bread crust, and the less dense centre. This same technology is now being applied to a compact integrated metal detector-X-ray system. Operating side by side, two inspection heads are mounted on one conveyor and operated by a single touchscreen, sharing electronics, controls, and a reject mechanism.
Neil Sandhu, SICKs UK Product Manager for Imaging, Measurement and Ranging, has observed developments towards greater accessibility in inspection technology.
We have seen an explosion in ease of use that has hugely broadened the accessibility of machine vision systems to packaging operators, opening up so much more scope for them to automate quality inspection and process control tasks. Advancements in processing technology have enabled massive amounts of power to be packed into ever-more compact and affordable, programmable vision sensors. Only a few years ago, 3D was still feared as a black art only to be attempted by seasoned experts, while 2D systems still needed a lot of time and cost to configure and commission. Now many 2D solutions are plug and play and even creating something bespoke is straightforward using just a web-browser dashboard, and without the need for programming skills.
Machine vision hardware has become smaller, more powerful and more robust, but the real advances have come from the software, he adds.
Development platforms like SICKs AppSpace aimed at making it as quick and simple as possible to configure a machine vision solution no matter whether you are an experienced machine-builder or a novice end-user.
Using AI in pharmaceutical inspection
Syntegon recently installed the first fully validated visual inspection system utilizing Artificial Intelligence (AI) in an automated inspection machine in collaboration with biotechnology company Amgen. The AI utilizes deep learning algorithms which are capable of accurately identifying recurring patterns and deviations.
When we started development in 2017, AI was already used in many domains, so why not apply it to pharmaceutical inspection? One of the main challenges consisted of transferring this type of application to very complex pharmaceutical processes and developing suitable implementation and validation concepts for this strictly regulated industry. Together with Amgen, we were able to install the first fully validated visual inspection system utilizing AI in an automated inspection machine in 2020, says Dr Jos Zanardi, responsible for vision inspection development and applications at Syntegon.
The AI-based system resulted in both an increase of particle detection rates and a reduction in false detection rates, he explains.
Amgen uses the system to reliably distinguish pesky air bubbles at the syringes rubber stopper from foreign particles, where conventional vision technology may misidentify. Syntegons AI-based vision system was able to increase the particle detection rate by 70%, while reducing the false detection rate by 60% (average values in a particular inspection station).
Dr Zanardi points out that there are a few points to bear in mind when it comes to using AI within inspection systems.
A decisive factor is courage. The pharmaceutical industry is known for its conservative approach to innovation, due to the very strict regulatory guidelines for process validation overall a highly positive attribute since the manufactured products have a direct impact on the health and safety of patients. Inspection technology experts can easily perform the required upgrades for visual inspection usage. However, there is one crucial point that must be considered to enable validation: in contrast to many other industries, the neural network must be frozen for application in pharmaceutical use once its training phase is finalized. It must be fixed and internal parameters are no longer able to change to make it version-controlled for validation.
Deep learning in vision inspection
Mr Sandhu points out the potential of deep learning when it comes to new developments in inspection technology. The SICK Intelligent Inspection Deep Learning App runs on SICKsnewly launchedInspectorP6212Dprogrammable vision camera.By embedding the Intelligent Inspection App onto SICKs InspectorP621deep learning camera, SICKcan offer aready-madepackagethat uses artificial intelligenceto run complexvision inspections.
Whereit has previously been very challenging to achieveconsistently robust and repeatablequalityinspections,for example when packaging naturally-grown produce, theycan now be masteredwith high levels ofreliability and availability.Automation is thereforenowpractical and affordableforcompleximagingtaskssuch assorting fruit and vegetables or checking that flow wrapping is correctly sealed, he adds.
Theimage inference is carried out directly on the device, sothere is no need for an additional PC. As the system training is done in the Cloud, there is also no need for separate training hardware or software, saving on implementation time and cost.
The app is set to be expanded to anomaly, detection and segmentation functions.
This will enable a product with a complex shape to be identified in a scene, or to be picked out from a random selection on a conveyor, for example to pick apples randomly placed on a conveyor but leave the pears, says Mr Sandhu.
The future of AI
Dr Zanardi sees great potential for AI and deep learning in inspection technology, and foresees it will be used more and more in facilities globally, and different inspection processes.
AI is especially advantageous in Difficult to Inspect Products (DIP), i.e. products that pose a challenge to obtain satisfactory inspection results when inspected with traditional image processing techniques. Advantages include an increase in detection rates (i.e. defective products successfully assessed as defective) and a decrease in false reject rates (i.e. good products wrongfully assessed as defective). Achieving these two points simultaneously is a remarkable feature, which is made possible by utilizing AI. Syntegon are developing the AI solution further to implement it in other machine families in our portfolio in the near future. Fewer false rejects will make inspection more efficient. Hence, I am convinced that our project with Amgen is just the beginning of a very exciting journey, he concludes.
- The Best Social Media Reactions and Memes at the 2021 Met Gala - Yahoo Lifestyle - September 15th, 2021
- Researchers lay the groundwork for an AI hive mind - The Next Web - September 15th, 2021
- Infinite Memory Transformer: Attending to Arbitrarily Long Contexts Without Increasing Computation Burden - Synced - September 15th, 2021
- It takes a village: how Asics got a small town to lace up and raise money for Mind UK - The Drum - September 15th, 2021
- EY study deep dives into financial protection gap - Insurance Business - September 15th, 2021
- Peptone: Putting molecular physics at the heart of UK's next billion-pound pharma company - Yahoo Money - September 15th, 2021
- Vigil episode four recap Silva and the crew are in deep water - The Guardian - September 13th, 2021
- How to cultivate a 'big mind' to deal with everyday stresses | HeraldNet.com - The Daily Herald - September 13th, 2021
- THE BOOK NOOK: Deep behind the scenes of 9/11 - Niagara Gazette - September 13th, 2021
- How 7 years of dirt is deep cleaned from mattresses - Insider - September 13th, 2021
- A therapy called rhythm that creates impact on the body and the mind - Onmanorama - September 13th, 2021
- Bidens abortion clash with the Catholic Church - POLITICO - September 13th, 2021
- God's mysterious riches, wisdom, and knowledge - Leawood - Church of the Resurrection - September 13th, 2021
- Google pulls the plug on DeepMind-developed health app Streams - Business Insider - September 1st, 2021
- Where the mind is without fear - The Times of India Blog - September 1st, 2021
- Global Cognitive Computing in Retail Market, By Component, By Technology, By Deployment, By Application, By Region, Competition Forecast &... - September 1st, 2021
- U.S. households and small businesses have stockpiled a mind-blowing record cash pile of almost $17 trillion - MarketWatch - August 26th, 2021
- What would it be like to be a conscious AI? We might never know. - MIT Technology Review - August 26th, 2021
- Google Health Disbanded; Staff Sent To Other Divisions - Silicon UK - August 26th, 2021
- Zen and the art of fly-fishing in Sweden a photo essay - The Guardian - August 26th, 2021
- 7 Ways to Stop Racing Thoughts at Night and Get to Sleep - Livestrong - August 26th, 2021
- Possumhaw: Out of sight, out of mind - The Dispatch - The Commercial Dispatch - August 24th, 2021
- UK aims to boost solar by predicting cloud movements with A.I. - CNBC - August 24th, 2021
- This Special Nature Writing Ritual Will Connect You To Your Divine Feminine - mindbodygreen.com - August 24th, 2021
- Shipwrecked: A Shocking Tale of Love, Loss, and Survival in the Deep Blue Sea - Boston magazine - August 24th, 2021
- AllDay notes after deeper reading of the prospectus - Philstar.com - August 24th, 2021
- UCSD & Microsoft Improve Image Recognition With Extremely Low FLOPs - Synced - August 24th, 2021
- Are These the Hidden Deepfakes in the Anthony Bourdain Movie? - WIRED - August 24th, 2021
- Scientists report new findings on the role that fish play in balancing coral, algae on reefs - ASU Now - August 24th, 2021
- Accurate prediction of protein structures and interactions using a three-track neural network - Science Magazine - August 22nd, 2021
- The Wonders That Live at the Very Bottom of the Sea - The New York Times - August 22nd, 2021
- Tamo J is 'digging up deep-rooted issues' in therapy - Jamaica Gleaner - August 22nd, 2021
- How to use 'progressive muscle relaxation' to calms stress and ease anxiety - GLAMOUR UK - August 22nd, 2021
- Review: 'Sister Sorry' plunges deep into a shadowy abyss of the psyche. But are its characters worth caring about? - Berkshire Eagle - August 22nd, 2021
- Always on your mind - The New Indian Express - August 22nd, 2021
- This Former Pastor Is Changing Evangelicals' Minds on COVID Vaccines Mother Jones - Mother Jones - August 22nd, 2021
- How DeepMind's John Jumper unlocked the 3D secret to proteins - Fast Company - August 14th, 2021
- How to avoid falling asleep during meditation - The Indian Express - August 14th, 2021
- A New Review of Dozens of Studies Found These Are the 8 Most Effective Ways to Stop Worrying and Calm Your Mind - Inc. - August 14th, 2021
- Four Policies that Government Can Pursue to Advance Trustworthy AI - uschamber.com - August 14th, 2021
- England vs India 2nd Test, Day 3 as it happened: Roots marathon ton guides hosts to 27-run lead - Scroll.in - August 14th, 2021
- Deshbhakti Curriculum to be implemented in Delhi Govt schools. Here is what it will cover - Mint - August 14th, 2021
- Trouble at Google's DeepMind and tech workers not going back to the office - Business Insider - August 8th, 2021
- Embodied AI, superintelligence and the master algorithm - TechCrunch - August 8th, 2021
- Alserkal is serving up isolation tanks and other mind altering activities this month - Time Out Dubai - August 8th, 2021
- Tshola had a generous heart and mind - IOL - August 8th, 2021
- Keeping the faith: Remembering gratitude can help us extend love to others, transform world - The Columbus Dispatch - August 8th, 2021
- AI use cases are expanding and evolving in healthcare - Tech Wire Asia - August 1st, 2021
- DeepMind releases massive database of 3D protein structures - STAT - STAT - July 25th, 2021
- DeepMinds AI uncovers structure of 98.5 per cent of human proteins - News Nation USA - July 25th, 2021
- Good Morning, News: $600000 Settlement for 2017 PPB Killing, Deep Pockets Try Influencing MultCo DA, and Everything is GREAT at the Olympics! - The... - July 25th, 2021
- DeepMind open-sources AlphaFold 2 for protein structure predictions - VentureBeat - July 21st, 2021
- DeepMind's AlphaFold 2 reveal: Convolutions are out, attention is in - ZDNet - July 21st, 2021
- AI in Healthcare Market Growing Trade Among Emerging Economies Opening New Opportunities (2021-2031) | Nuance Communications, Inc., DeepMind... - July 21st, 2021
- Self-driving data centres: Managing the transition from human-to-AI workload management - IT Brief Australia - July 21st, 2021
- The scene is set | Royal St George's | The 149th Open - The Open - July 14th, 2021
- Tech Companies Leading the Cognitive Computing Race in 2021 - Analytics Insight - July 14th, 2021
- Science fiction: From hero's tales to deep thoughts - The Daily Advance - July 14th, 2021
- ADOT urges drivers to be prepared for monsoon weather dangers | Arizona Emergency information Network - az.gov - July 14th, 2021
- Taking the long view, taking control - Cape Cod Times - July 14th, 2021
- The ultimate reading list if you love to delve into the mind - Livemint - July 14th, 2021
- Midland Theatre executive director Anderson to retire Sept. 1 - The Newark Advocate - July 14th, 2021
- The Future of Deep Learning | - Analytics Insight - July 10th, 2021
- The movie you should watch this weekend: Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, the heart wants what it wants - The Indian Express - July 10th, 2021
- From the Extension: Keep health and safety in mind when firing up the grill - Daily Commercial - July 10th, 2021
- Follow your fever dreams with Nashville Hot Hot Dogs - The Takeout - July 10th, 2021
- Former Bureaucrats, Civil Society Express Deep Anguish On Violations and Breakdown of Governance in UP - The Citizen - July 10th, 2021
- The 36 questions that lead to love (but with your co-founder) - TechCrunch - July 10th, 2021
- Googles Supermodel: DeepMind Perceiver is a step on the road to an AI machine that could process anything... - ZDNet - July 8th, 2021
- At the ICA Watershed, artist Firelei Bez draws history from the deep - The Boston Globe - July 8th, 2021
- The Streaming Age Has Turned Poland Into a Deep-Pocketed Production Paradise - Hollywood Reporter - July 8th, 2021
- What Toxic Positivity Actually Is (& Why You Should Avoid It) - mindbodygreen.com - July 8th, 2021
- UCF Lake Nona Scientific Heart Is The First Sanatorium In Central Florida To Be offering Incisionless Mind Surgical treatment As An Complex Remedy For... - July 8th, 2021
- Young Cho's goals are even bigger than deep space; His team is working on astronaut nutrition that translates to earth - Westside Seattle - July 8th, 2021
- Two books to make you think differently about the ocean and the beach - Christian Science Monitor - July 8th, 2021
- Jimmy McGovern: Even the psychopaths are a deep, horrible part of me - Sydney Morning Herald - July 8th, 2021
- 'I took a deep breath and got on with it' - Jorginho on his ice-cold winning penalty and Italy's belief | Official Site | Chelsea Football Club -... - July 8th, 2021
- Tour de France: Geraint Thomas to ride on through pain with Olympics in mind - The Guardian - July 8th, 2021
- Poetry Amid Parkinsons - The Wall Street Journal - July 8th, 2021
- Quinlan-Hammond Hall of Honor Taking Shape on USM Campus - Southern Miss Now - July 8th, 2021