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Feature-checker `opens up new inspection market`

01 March, 2005

Feature-checker `opens up new inspection market`

Cognex believes that it has opened up a new industrial inspection market with a low-cost, easy-to-use device which checks whether features are present on items as they pass along production lines. The company predicts that its mobile-phone-sized Checker 101 will solve many manufacturing problems - such as checking for the presence of bottle caps and labels - that have been difficult or impossible to solve using photo-sensors and other devices.

Using a patent-pending technology, the Checker can detect automatically when a product is ready to be inspected. It does not require an external trigger, even for products moving continuously at high speed. Cognex says that the device can analyse more than 400 images per second, allowing it to keep up with the fastest manufacturing processes and allowing 100% inspection of several product features at each stage of production.

The IP67-rated package incorporates a sensor, optics, illumination, processor, memory and I/O. Cognex claims that even first-time users will have it running in a few minutes.

The global market for presence-sensing devices is already worth more than $1bn a year. "Because Checker 101 has a significant price/performance advantage over other means of presence sensing in complex applications, we expect it to address a significant percentage of that market," predicts Cognex`s chief executive, Dr Robert Shillman.

The Checker 101 is the first member in a new family of dedicated smart sensors. "Each model in the Checker family will do only one thing, but it will do it extraordinarily fast and well," Shillman says.

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