A new vision inspection system, designed to add a range of quality controls to tablet and capsule counting systems for the pharmaceutical industry, has been launched by Machine Vision Technology Ltd. Supplied both with original equipment or retrofitted to existing counting systems, this latest use of camera vision technology has been specially developed by Machine Vision Technology Ltd (MVT) for pharmaceutical applications. Tablet and capsule colour, shape and size can be inspected, defects can be detected and product mixing prevented.
Utilising megapixel colour cameras with an LCD monitor and custom lighting, each camera scans an area equivalent to six lanes or conveying channels on tablet counting machines. The camera will detect colour variation, texture, surface and coating defects, such as scratches, cracks and chips, and will monitor size by length, width and diameter.
Camera software allows for menu selection of up to 400 products as standard, although this is expandable. The menu also allows for recall of pre-saved product parameters and a live image display provides ongoing information during production. Product tracking and analysis throughout the field of view of each camera is continuous. An analysis can be made every 50 milliseconds. Integrated with the counter software, the camera software identifies defective products through a signal to the counter, indicating where the defect has been detected. One option would be for the counter to force the defective tablet into a known bottle for rejection on discharge from the counting machine.
Says Rick Marshall, Sales Manager, "MVT's system is particularly suited to high volume tablet counting machines. Adding our in line camera vision system enhances quality control by providing additional quality assurance, production repeatability and reliability." The new system can be retrofitted easily and is suitable for all leading tablet counting systems currently available.