R&D ACTIVITIES


DiViNe - Distributed Vision Network for Pharmaceutical Inspection

Introduction

The goal of this project was to apply advanced distributed automated visual inspection technology in industrial pharmaceutical packaging lines. The main objective was to demonstrate that it is possible to apply this advanced inspection technology on the industrial production line in a flexible, user friendly and cost-effective way.

To achieve this goal, the solution has been based on advanced high performance smart-camera technology, allowing to build a high performance network of distributed visual inspection stations. The following tasks, pertinent to pharmaceutical packaging inspection will be addressed by the inspection stations:

Market Situation and Technology State-of-the-Art

Pharmaceutical production facilities around the world are different in terms of degree of automation, internal organization etc. However, strict rules for Standard Operating Procedures are defined in each country in order to provide consistently the quality level necessary for pharmaceutical products. Recently defined, more severe quality assurance rules have created a trend towards the increased use of highly automated visual inspection in the pharmaceutical production facilities.

The current technology status of commercially available vision equipment is sufficient for solving most of the potential inspection tasks. The major industrial vision vendors however do not offer market ready specialized systems for the pharmaceutical industry. Current solutions have limitations that demonstrate the need for distributed automated inspection systems that have relatively low cost, can be networked to share resources and are modular so that they are easily integrated.

At the moment there is no commercial product available in the international market with the versatility, performance and cost characteristics of the system that is proposed within the context of this project. The emerging smart camera technology however, provides an opportunity to transfer image analysis technology already proven in practice to a new, high performance platform which will provide the building block for an advanced distributed inspection system at an affordable cost.

Objectives and Results

The objective of this project is to develop an automated visual inspection system that is:

Within the context of this project, the pilot DiViNe system has been designed, implemented, installed and validated at the production lines of the industrial partner FAMAR.

The Participants

The DiViNe project has been undertaken by three companies and one research institute. Two companies are in Greece (TESEIK and FAMAR), one in Switzerland (KUKAM). The research intstitute, Fraunhofer-Geselschaft - Institut Integrierte Schaltungen (FhG-IIS) is in Germany.

TESEIK is the technology provider, assisted by KUKAM and FhG-IIS, which acted as scientific and technological advisors and experts. FAMAR is the industrial user where the DiViNe system has deployed and validated.


TESEIK S.A. Irodotou 27 GR-10673 Athens Greece
Tel: +30 2107211306, Fax: +30 2107211307
For comments or queries, please mail to: info@teseik.gr
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