“With human inspectors, it is natural that product samples, especially those close to the limit between good and bad, will be assessed differently by different operators. The likelihood of these differences increases after humans have worked a few hours and are tired,” notes Pistilli, “but with a vision system, in addition to the enhanced quality control, the inspections are repeatable 24 hours a day and the machines perform faster than any operator could.”
Perfection under pressure
From start to finish, the production process for brake disks encompasses the sand-casting phase, sand removal and disk separation, cleaning/blasting, machine-vision quality inspection, and finally, the disk machining phase.
Three people from MOSAIC participated in developing the machine vision project: Luciano Cecchi, a senior expert engineer responsible for the machine design and optical calculation; Pistilli, who oversaw hardware selection/setup and software development; and Alessandro Viola, a programmable logic controller (PLC) expert programmer for the PLC hardware selection and software logic development. “We had great support from Luca Gallo, our contact at Matrox Imaging,” Pistilli confirms. “I also had the chance to learn new skills by following Matrox Vision Academy training, which has proven of tremendous benefit.”