for automatic sanitaryware sorting

SACMI has recently developed the new D3 Qualitrack system, an innovative and reliable solution for the automatic inspection of fired pieces with the use of vision systems designed for piece quality control.
The use of vision systems and Software specially designed to check the main measurements and identify the presence of any surface defects and deformations means that it is possible to determine automatically whether a piece is good, whether it needs to be re-touched or rejected.
Compared to inspection carried out by the human eye, once the required sorting criteria has been set, the vision system detects any product defects with accuracy, repeatability and objectivity eliminating the risk of partiality and error that can occur when inspecting sanitaryware in the traditional way with the human eye.

The prototyped system of the vision systems with relative control software, together with the use of an anthropomorphic robot, make it possible for sanitaryware pieces to be inspected automatically.
The aim of the QualiTrack system is to inspect a product on the basis of a set of instructions, also known as “recipes”, prepared off-line and dedicated to the individual products to be inspected.

The QualiTrack cell process consists of the following main operations:

  • Data acquisition from 2D images to check for surface defects and from 3D scans to check for deformations in order to select the product associated with the relevant sorting recipe.
  • Inspection using software for analysis, data processing and output of the inspection results
  • Compilation and display of sorting data reports

Thanks to a robot, sophisticated vision systems and dedicated software for data acquisition and processing, the D3 Qualitrack system can check both piece dimensions as well as any deformations and surface defects in real time, identifying any deviation from the pre-set quality parameters.
The main advantage of this solution is therefore the possibility to obtain and record objective reports. The results of the automatic sorting, stored in association with the product bar code, can easily be consulted on a PC or tablet. The system basically enables the user to have the digital identity of the piece ready-to-hand at any time, as it is memorized on the bar code, meaning the product is sorted in an objective manner and it is also possible to go back and adjust the production process according to results. 

A further benefit is that the system can be set up according to the level of automation required, allowing control of piece handling before and after the automatic sorting line to be more or less automated as necessary.
Future developments of the system will consist of the implementation of further automatic controls such as checks for cooling cracks and vacuum tests as well as the possible extension of the vision control system to the production phases further up the line such as casting and finishing. 

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