Code reading system eliminates label misprints at healthcare supplier

A leading healthcare product supplier has commissioned vision systems integrator Olmec-UK to develop and install turnkey code reading systems on three production lines.

The new code reading systems were introduced to improve efficiency in production by checking labels to eliminate those with partial print, missing print or smudged print before they are applied to the product. In order to accommodate the widely differing lot code demands and requirements worldwide together with numerous background label colours, Olmec developed a system based on an Omron SC2M 2 Megapixel colour camera connected to an Omron FZ-9 vision controller, which enables the use of multi-threading for high speed processing. The system quickly checks characters and label format by auto detecting the lot code location and then automatically sets itself up for the inspection.

The code reading systems offer fully validated character recognition, character verification and robust 2D data matrix handling and grading, and are capable of tasks ranging from simple verification through to GS1 and CIP13 conformance. The code to be read was illuminated using an on-axis light source. The code readers were housed in FDA-approved stainless steel and anodised aluminium enclosures with provision for simple camera position adjustment. A touch screen user interface allows fast and easy set-up of the system as well as access to an embedded user manual. Powerful facilities include image storage, statistical counting and batch reporting.

Olmec not only designed the code reader and user interface, but also worked in close collaboration with the coding and labelling systems supplier to ensure a seamless integration into the production line. On-line demonstrations were carried out as the project progressed to confirm that the performance of the system met the customer’s requirements.

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