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SWIR imaging technology extends machine vision applications

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SWIR imaging technology extends machine vision applicationsStemmer Imaging’s Short Wave Infrared (SWIR) imaging technology is helping manufacturers to perform advanced inspection, non-destructive testing or sorting tasks. Allied Vision’s Goldeye and Xenics’ Bobcat 640 and Lynx SWIR cameras and a new range of high-resolution lenses from Computar extend machine vision capabilities beyond the visible spectrum.

Imaging in the SWIR (900–1700nm) region of the spectrum allows the possibility of ‘seeing’ subsurface information that is not possible with light in the visible region. Applications range from identifying water accumulation inside fruit to imaging defects within silicon products or identifying different plastic materials in the recycling industry. A choice of industrial SWIR cameras with InGaAs sensors and high-resolution lenses optimised for SWIR wavelengths allow the most suitable combination to be chosen for the particular application.

SWIR imaging is often used for photoluminescence inspection applications in the solar cell industry because the silicon-based material appears transparent at wave lengths above 1350nm. This leads to an easy detection of material defects such as inclusions or fractures so that this contact-free, non-destructive inspection method allows defect parts to be eliminated at an early stage of the production process. Solar cell producers therefore benefit from lower production cost and improved product quality.

The G-008 is a new member of Allied Vision’s Goldeye camera family. This high-speed SWIR camera operates at frame rates up to 346fps at 320 × 256 pixel resolution and features a GigE vision interface. This is suited to industrial applications where higher resolution is not important. Integrated thermo-electric sensor cooling and on-board image correction features contribute to the Goldeye’s outstanding image quality.

Xenics’ Bobcat-640 SWIR camera is available in both GigE Vision and CameraLink versions with full VGA 640 × 512 pixel resolution. It offers frame rates up to 100fps. An optional wavelength enhanced InGaAs sensor (400–1700nm) extends operation into the visible region of the spectrum. On-board image processing capabilities include non-uniformity correction for a wide range of integration times, auto-exposure and contrast enhancement.

The Xenics Lynx range of high sensitivity uncooled InGaAs line scan cameras utilise Xenics’ technology to offer high-performance SWIR imaging in a highly compact package. The products are suitable for a wide range of quality assurance applications where high resolution is required. The Xenics Lynx cameras are well suited to high-speed scanning with line rates up to 40kHz and resolution up to 2048 pixels. The small form factor and sensor size allow high-precision imaging and optimisation of compact systems.

The CBC Group has introduced four new Computar high-resolution lenses specifically designed for applications in the NIR and SWIR. Available with a choice of focal lengths (16mm, 25mm, 35mm, 50mm) these new lenses benefit from a special coating technology that delivers a high transmission from 800–1700nm.

To learn more about Short Wave Infrared (SWIR) imaging products available from Stemmer, please visit www.stemmer-imaging.co.uk.

 
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