Experts have been telling everyone for years that globalization and open economies will be the hallmark of the coming years in almost every line of business. From financial services to high-tech to manufacturing, the playing field for those competing in world markets will indeed be the entire world. Few can argue that these experts were not indeed correct. It has never been more vital that every country in the world, those with already well-developed markets and manufacturing bases, as well as those emerging nations now absorbing a considerable share of the global manufacturing load, be prepared and competitive in all aspects of the production process in order to maintain and grow their manufacturing sector.
And nowhere is the need to remain competitive more important than in ensuring the quality of the products being produced.
Given the pace of technology as well as that of the production line, more and more companies are turning to vision inspection equipment to perform this task.
This includes intelligent visual equipment used in inspecting the painting and coating of parts before they move along to the next stage of the production cycle.
Higher production speeds require higher inspection speeds, which can only be accomplished with replacing the human eye with vision inspection equipment that is able to detect even the smallest imperfections and defects on parts moving along the fastest assembly lines in the world. Visual inspection equipment used in the paint and coating industry, or simply during this aspect of the larger production process, can accurately pinpoint defects that the human eye will miss while tracking these parts as the move through an assembly line.
Problems such as craters, seeds, pops, sags, scratches, non-uniformities and foreign particle or contamination detection are just some of the many painting and coating issues that are best addressed with the use of intelligent machine vision systems.
Machine vision systems have been used in hundreds of applications worldwide for many years, especially in the area of visual inspection and quality control. They are reliable, versatile, can work at high speeds, are easily integrated into almost any production process and can deliver cost savings that easily outweigh any consideration and concern over the initial investment in these systems. It should be obvious that higher manufacturing speeds and increased demand globally for high quality products give automated machine vision inspection equipment the upper hand over almost any other manual inspection system used in the painting, coating and finishing of manufactured products.
While the need for vision inspection systems in manufacturing and production is unquestionable and the cost savings easily quantified, it is still important that manufacturers of these systems try to keep the overall cost of this equipment within reasonable parameters, which is not always an easy task with high-tech equipment. Generally, high-tech equipment only becomes more affordable as the technology and the market matures, with new producers entering the market while more established manufacturers of this equipment develop new and more innovative elements, all of which can tend to drive down prices over the medium to long term.
When it comes to competition between manufacturing centers around the world, cost considerations for vision inspection equipment becomes even more critical, despite the savings generated by this equipment. The most important application of intelligent vision inspection equipment and systems in the painting and coating industry are those that ensure quality control of finished products. The ability of the manufacturers of these systems to design lower cost equipment that accomplishes this task using high-tech software capable of overseeing the speed of the 21st century high speed production line helps to level the playing field for everyone in the industry as they compete for greater market share.
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