DataMan ID reader used on cheese products

Unrivaled 2D code readability through a tough processing environment

A customer success story from Cognex

Het Kaasmerk b.v in the Netherlands is using a DataMan® ID reader to read the codes marked on individual blocks of cheese. The cheese mark with the 2D code is applied to the cheese at as early a stage of the production process as possible.The code is made from casein (a protein particular to cheese) and is therefore edible. This 2D code is not however immune to damage, as it undergoes the same treatment as the cheese itself during the production process. Pickling (salt bath) and coating (application of a paraffin or plastic layer) can cause significant damage. The mark can often become distorted as a result of the puffing up of the cheese.

The applied code functions as a veritable passport. In the past, these codes consisted of regular text which had many disadvantages. Isotron Systems and Het Kaasmerk B.V. therefore sat down together and jointly introduced the 2D dot matrix codes to cheese producers. They improved the contrast and cell size of the 2D code on the cheese marks.

Jeroen van der Meulen adds, “We opted for the Cognex In-Sight® ID reader in a waterproof casing. The implementation of the patented IDMax® algorithm also enables unclear, damaged and distorted codes to be read without difficulty. The codes must remain legible during the distribution and sales phases. To this end we provide portable readers: the DataMan 7500 series with its unique lighting source and IDMax with which highly irregular codes can be read. This provides a solution for new, young, and old cheeses. This solution offers 100 percent certainty. It is after all in-acceptable for a code to be misread or that a reader indicates a different code than what is written on the cheese mark. This solution is 100 percent waterproof and counterfeit proof,” he concludes.

Recommended Product: Cognex DataMan 8600

Tri-Phase Automation is a Cognex distributor in Wisconsin. We offer machine vision evaluations and technical support to help our customers solve their applications.

DataMan high read rates ensure weight and measures compliance

Successful weight measurements of Beer Kegs

A application success story from Cognex.

The process of kegging brings significant challenges and recording weight information. Barcodes are used in the weighting process and the barcode can become significantly damaged while being transported and when in use in the pub cellar.   Previously, a laser scanner was used to read the barcodes. However, due to the amount of damage the scanner was only achieving a 60 – 65 percent success rate of barcodes being read correctly.

Without making a change to the labeling process, the DataMan industrial id reader was able to achieve 63 percent increase in read rates. A key advantage is it has no moving parts which means less chance of downtime due to mechanical faults. Plus, the DataMan is easy to use and set up which means operators can adjust or alter the system themselves without the need for technical assistance.

Recommended Product: Cognex DataMan 360

Tri-Phase Automation is a Cognex distributor in Wisconsin. We offer machine vision evaluations and technical support to help our customers solve their applications.

Cognex readers power LABELYS solution for comprehensive cheese production management and traceability

A comprehensive identification and traceability solution featuring  Cognexcognex-labelys-cheese

LABELYS, founded in 2004 and based in eastern France, specializes in producing labels made of casein (a milk protein biocompatiable with cheese) This method cannot be removed nor falsified. It becomes the cheese’s passport.  providing reliable identification that allows producers to protect their wares and their brand, defending against imitations and guarantee flawless traceability. Since cheese evolves as it matures reading the label can become a challenging task.

Application Solution:
Growth in the use of Data Matrix codes, with higher data capacity and density, encouraged LABELYS to add to its range of code reading systems suitable for this type of marking. After testing multiple competitors, the company selected Cognex DataMan readers.

Cognex readers provide uniform results despite the variations in label quality, fully rebuilding coded from available data to ensure 100 percent identification.

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Cognex readers power LABELYS solution for comprehensive cheese production management and traceability

ID Readers Enable Part Traceability of Direct Part Mark Products

cognex-id-reader-enables-part-tracebility-of-direct-part-mark-productWhen Canadian energy services company Packers Plus needed to read challenging dot peened codes on a variety of parts, they specified Cognex® DataMan® handheld ID readers. The company’s StackFRAC® system consists of many parts, each marked with a unique 2D Data Matrix code that enables traceability throughout its useful life.

Traceability delivers two important benefits for Packers Plus. First, it reduces rework costs by providing better manufacturing process control and ensuring that the right parts are used at every stage of production. Second, it enables Packers Plus to quickly retrieve information on 100% of the parts in every system that has been shipped out their door, including production history and quality control information.

In the past, Packers Plus manually recorded information such as lot numbers, heat numbers, quality control measurements and other information in a spreadsheet. “This was a very time-consuming manual process that took approximately four hours for each product, so we only did it when necessary,” said Marlon Leggott, Director of Manufacturing for Packers Plus. “Another problem with the manual process is that it is susceptible to mistakes, such as data entry errors.”

Selecting marking and reading tools

Packers Plus considered a number of different options for improving traceability when it installed its new ERP system. Kurtis Weber of iTech Tool Technology helped Packers Plus design the traceability solution. “We looked at labels with standard line bar codes but determined they would have to come off during assembly, which would negate many of the advantages of serialization,” Weber said. “RFID tags don’t work well with various metal parts because of interference with reading and writing the tags. Laser marking overcomes all of these problems but laser marking machines begin at $50,000 and have to be enclosed — which causes problems when used to mark large pieces — and cannot easily be moved from place to place. We recommended a dot peen marking system because it is permanent, does not rely on fragile RF transmissions, costs only about $10,000 per machine, and is available in fixed or mobile models. The mobility allows us to easily move around the plant and successfully mark any size part in a variety of orientations.” With dot peen marking, a carbide or diamond-tipped stylus pneumatically or electromechanically strikes the material surface.

Packers Plus then faced the difficult challenge of reading the marked parts. The challenge arises from the fact that Packers Plus makes parts with curved surfaces and many different materials and coating combinations. Nearly any reader can be adjusted to provide perfect accuracy on a particular combination but Packers Plus wanted a reader that could deliver high levels of accuracy on any part. “We recommended Cognex DataMan handheld readers because they adjust the lighting to match the part and use the industry’s most  advanced algorithm  for picking out the 2D Data Matrix code from the background,” Weber said. “This is the only product I have seen that is capable of accurately reading the wide range of parts used by Packers Plus.” 

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ID Readers Enable Part Traceability for Direct Part Marked Products