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机器视觉,春天来了

(2007-10-31 09:58:58)


机器视觉,春天来了

 

记者 路艳艳

    据有关统计数字显示,目前,中国的机器视觉市场容量已经达到了1亿~2亿美元。虽然在全球机器视觉60亿美元的市场份额中,这不过是一个小得几乎可以被忽略掉的数字,但无人可以忽视中国机器视觉市场巨大的增长潜力。有人做过这样一个计算,按我国GDP的增速为8%计算,其中工业增长的份额为20%~30%,那么即使保守估计,机器视觉的增长速度也不会低于10%~15%。中国正在成为全世界最有潜力的机器视觉市场。
    “中国的确正在成为世界机器视觉发展最活跃的地区之一,这与中国‘世界制造中心’的地位不无关系。”西安机器视觉研究发展中心主任雷文华在接受采访时对记者说。他告诉记者,众多世界先进水平的生产线被迁移到中国的同时,国际先进水平的机器视觉系统也随之来到中国。对这些机器视觉系统的维护和提升而产生的市场需求将国际机器视觉企业吸引而至,这为中国机器视觉产业的发展注入了催化剂。
    而今,活跃在国内机器视觉领域的已经不仅仅是“外来者”,机器视觉领域已经出现了众多的本土企业,包括设备制造商、代理商和系统集成商等。
    机器视觉最主要的用途是质量监控,即用机器代替人眼,来检测产品的外观、尺寸及其他质量参数,以达到提高生产效率和自动化程度的目的。雷文华介绍说,现代化工业生产中,有一些大批量生产且对外观质量要求非常高的场合,如汽车零配件尺寸检查和自动化装配的完整性检查、电子装配线的元件自动定位、饮料瓶盖的印刷质量检查以及产品包装上的条码和字符识别等。之前,这种带有高度重复性和智能性的工作只能靠人工检测来完成,在给工厂增加巨大的人工成本和管理成本的同时,仍然不能保证100%的合格率。有些微小尺寸的精确快速测量、形状匹配、颜色辨别等,用人眼根本无法连续稳定地进行,其他物理量传感器也难有用武之地,而使用机器视觉却可以解决这一难题。
    “由于机器视觉系统可以快速获取大量信息,而且易于自动处理,也易于同设计信息以及加工控制信息集成,因此在现代自动化控制过程中,人们将机器视觉系统广泛用于工况监测、成品检验和质量控制等领域。”雷文华介绍说。
    如今,国际化的竞争环境使得企业越来越注重产品质量,这无疑大大促进了机器视觉技术在各行各业的应用。
    最初,机器视觉多用于电子及半导体行业,也有“国外机器视觉的崛起很大程度上是得益于其半导体行业发展”的说法。因为,半导体行业中诸如锡膏印刷机、贴片机、AOI检测之类的设备必须使用高性能机器视觉组件。而今,机器视觉的应用领域却越来越广泛,在国内的汽车制造、食品饮料、制药、包装、印刷、烟草等行业,都已经有了成功的应用。
    如作为机器视觉和科学图像软硬件产品供应商的NI(美国国家仪器公司),除了持续关注半导体领域的目标市场外,依靠其机器视觉与自动化系统的集成优势在汽车制造和制药等有代表性的制造行业更是取得了丰富的成功经验。据NI的技术市场工程师俞涛介绍,在汽车火花塞生产线上,使用NI机器视觉产品建立自动测量系统代替传统的人工手动方式,可达到6Sigma标准所对应的精度、重复性及过程信息记录要求,最终实现产量和产品质量的提高。
    而另一家国际知名的机器视觉产品供应商——美国邦纳国际工程有限公司的视觉产品经理李根良在接受采访时,则为记者列举了邦纳机器视觉产品在汽车、电子、半导体及液体灌装等领域的几个典型应用。
    机器视觉在国内制造业的应用也呈现出非常明显的地域化特征,即集中在经济较发达的华东和华南地区。这些地区拥有许多外商独资、合资和港资企业,也有一些企业是专门为国外品牌做代工生产的。事实证明,这些企业仍然是国内机器视觉产品的主要“消费者”。
    “特别是一些港资企业,高层人士一般都具有海外的背景,他们对机器视觉并不陌生,比内地企业对机器视觉的了解要多一些。”从事机器视觉产品集成、提供行业解决方案的深圳视觉龙机器视觉技术有限公司的丁少华博士对记者说,他们的用户中,港资的电子和半导体企业占大多数。
    虽然机器视觉对于一些内地制造企业来说还不是“必需品”,有些企业还能够接受“标签贴歪”、“瓶子有瑕疵”等似乎看起来很“小”的质量问题。但被访者普遍预测,随着全球化竞争的加剧,必然会有越来越多的内地制造企业提高质量意识,加入到机器视觉产品的用户队伍当中。
    被访者均对机器视觉今后几年在中国的应用和发展表示了看好,但他们也预测,机器视觉领域的竞争也将日趋激烈。美国邦纳的李根良表示:“对于用户来说,机器视觉产品的价格当然是越便宜越好,所以价格竞争不可避免,但不能发展到损害品质的程度。所以,这就需要我们这些做机器视觉的企业联合起来,共同创造一个良性的竞争环境。”

 

Machine Vision, It is Showing Time!

    Statistics shows that the capacity of Chinese machine vision market has already amounted to 100~200 million US dollars. Though, compared with the 6 billion US dollars in the global machine vision market, this small numeral can be neglected, but nobody denies the Chinese machine vision market's huge potential. Some people have made this kind of computation, according to the GDP growth of our country, the share of industry is 20%~30%. As the conservative estimate, the rate rise of machine vision's application cannot be lower than 10%~15%. China is becoming the most potential market of machine vision in the world.
    "China is indeed becoming one of the most active places of machine vision market in the world. This has relations to Chinese status-world manufacturing center." Lei Wenhua (director of Xi'an machine vision research development center) said. He also said that the multitudinous world advanced production lines are migrated to China, the international advanced machine vision system also arrives in China. The market demand produced by these machine vision systems' maintenance and promoting attracts the international machine vision enterprise, this has poured into the catalyst for the development of Chinese machine vision industry.
At present, they are not merely "externals" who are enlivening in the domestic machine vision domain. The multitudinous native place enterprise appeared, including equipment manufacturer, business agent and system integration business and so on.
    The main use of machine vision is the quality monitoring, it replaces person eyes with the machines, and then can examine the outward appearance, the size and other quality parameters of products, so we could enhance production efficiency and the automat city. Lei Wenhua introduces that, in the modernization industrial production, there are some situations which have the extremely high quality requirement to mass productions and the outward appearance, such as automobile spare parts dimensional inspection, complete inspection of automated assembly, automatic positioning of electronic assembly line part, print quality inspection of drink bottle cap, barcode and character recognition and so on. This kind of work with highly duplicated and the intelligence just depended on artificially examines before. While increase the huge artificial cost and management cost, we still could not guarantee 100% qualified rate. We are unable to precise shape match, the color distinguished rapidly in small size with our eyes. Other physical quantity sensors are also difficult to solve this difficult problem except machine vision.
    "Because the machine vision system can gain the massive information fast, it is easy to process automatically and integrated with design information and processing control information, therefore in modern automation controlled process, the people will widely use machine vision in operating mode monitor, test of products, quality control etc." Lei Wenhua said.
    Nowadays, the internationalization competition environment makes the enterprise put more attention to the quality of products. It greatly promotes the application of machine vision technology in all the various fields.
    At first, machine vision most used in electron and semiconductor fields, it is said that the rising of machine vision is benefit from the semiconductor field. Because the semiconductor field such as the tin paste printer, pastes the piece machine, AOI examines has to use the high performance machine vision module. At the present, the application domain of machine vision is more and more broad. In domestic, it already had the successful application in automobile manufacture, food drink, drugs manufacture, packing, printing, tobacco.
    As the product supplier of machine vision, main supplier of software and hardware for scientific picture, NI (Nation Instrument) obtained rich success experience in automobile manufacture and the drugs manufacture profession which depended upon its machine vision and integrated superiority in automated system. According to the introduction of Yu Tao, a technical & maketing engineer of NI, on the automobile igniter plug production line, we use the NI machine vision products to establish automatic measurement system, then we may achieve the precision, duplicated and the process information recording request which corresponded with 6 sigma standard, then we can finally realize the enhancement of the product quality and production.
    But BANNER's , another international well-known machine vision supplier, visual product Manager Li Genliang give some model application of BANNER's products in the automobile,electron,semiconductor and liquid canned.
    The machine vision also presents the extremely obvious region characteristic in the domestic manufacturing industry. In East China and South China, these areas have many foreign sole ownership, the joint capital and the Hong Kong capital enterprise, also there are some enterprises which produce overseas brands. It is proved that, these enterprises still are the main consumers of domestic machine vision products.
    "Especially some Hong Kong capital enterprises, their senior officials generally all have the background of studying abroad, they are not strange to the machine vision, compared to the inland enterprises, these companies understand much more." Dr. Ding Shaohua who is engaged in the machine vision product proxy and system integration work for a long time said to reporter. In their users, the electron and the semiconductor enterprises of Hong Kong are majority.
    Although the machine vision is not the essential item to some inland manufacture enterprises, some enterprises also can accept the quality questions such as "the label pastes crookedly" , "the bottle has slight defects" . But along with globalization competition intensifying, there must be much more inland manufacture enterprises which would raise the quality consciousness, they will join to the troop of machine vision product users.
    These people above expressed their optimistic opinions about machine vision's application and the development next several years in China, but they also indicated, the competition of machine vision domain will be also intense day by day. Li Genliang said that: "Users hope the machine vision product cheaper and cheaper, so the price competition is inevitable. But it must not harm the quality degree. Therefore, enterprises must unite, create a benign competition environment."

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