The Challenge

  • To create an automated inspection operation for a medical device manufacturer to replace a 100% manual inspection process carried out by 2 operators each shift.
  • There were 4 different variations of the product, so an automation solution must be capable of adjusting to suit different production schedules.
  • Expandability was also needed to be considered for future versions.
  • The system would require the capability of scanning the parts for visual rejects on top and bottom surfaces. Once the parts are scanned the machine must distinguish which part is good and which one is a reject and deal with them accordingly.

Our Solution

  • After the initial acceptance of our proposed layout and operation, the customer was presented with a detailed project plan in the form of a Gantt chart.
  • Timely design reviews, with milestone processes showing each stage of the project right through to the installation and site acceptance testing.
  • The final outcome was a fully automated module taking the components from a special purpose hopper into a vibrator bowl to transfer and orientate the parts consecutively.
  • Parts were then conveyed into the test cell where 2 components were placed into machined nests located on an indexing table.
  • As the parts travelled through the machine, various stations performed inspections utilizing Cognex vision inspection cameras.
  • From the test results, parts were then placed into good and reject bins.
  • The outcome was a combined effort that allowed our client to have an improved ownership and understanding of the final solution.

Benefits to the Customer

  • Better QA/QC (Quality Assurance/Quality Control)
  • Productivity Increase – required 38ppm ‘machine capable of 70ppm’
  • 20-30% cost saving
  • The Utilization of qualified operators in other areas
  • Possible 24/7/365 production