Sensors & Transducers

Intelligent sensing

September 2009 Sensors & Transducers

Banner’s new vision system needs no computer.

Machine vision systems do not necessarily need lots of extra computing power and complex software to carry out difficult inspection tasks. That is the guiding principle behind Banner Engineering’s new image sensing system, which is designed to be both simple and smart.

Called the iVu Series TG, this self-contained image sensing system features a 68 mm LCD touch screen for factory-floor programming, a 752 x 480 CMOS imager and pattern-recognition software running on a DSP platform. “No PC or any other external equipment is required to set up or operate the system,” says Dan Holste, Banner’s director of vision.

With three built-in sensing modes – match, area and area with motion – the iVu does not seem to suffer much from the lack of a computer.

“It can solve a full range of complex, high-speed vision problems. Among them are the inspection and verification of labels, packaging, product codes, part features and more. The system can also serve in a variety of part-presence and part-orientation applications. In the past, all of these types of applications required vision systems with extensive sensor configuration using software and a PC,” adds Holste.

As for speed, he puts the iVu’s average pattern recognition time at 50 milliseconds or so, depending on the specific application.

While iVu does not need a computer to run and is not network ready, it does have a USB 2.0 drive that allows it to share data with offline PCs. Using a thumb drive, users can download inspection data from the iVu or upload programs developed in a free software emulator.

“Users can program the system with either the touch screen or the software emulator,” Holste notes. “We believe there are many users who were forced into more of a vision system than they really needed whenever they could not solve their inspection problems with photo-electrics. This system addresses their needs and occupies the middle ground between photo-electric sensing and high-end vision systems.”

For more information contact Rodney Topham, RET Automation, +27 (0)11 453 2468,,


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