AMPOULE CONTROL IN THE PHARMACEUTICAL INDUSTRY

Task setting:

Non-contact testing and measuring is unavoidable in many areas, but is often not possible for humans. Therefore, a camera system should replace the human error source and work continuously at constant quality.

Realization:

The image processing system described here measures ampoule strips, checks the contents and the processing of the product. By automating this testing process, it is possible to ensure quality and minimize follow-up costs due to manufacturing defects.
Transparent 5’er ampoule strips are produced in blow, fill and seal processes. The task of image processing is to determine the dimensions of the ampoule strips, to check the level of the saline solution contained and to check the shape of the ampoule neck and opening. The system is controlled via an intuitive user interface. This can be adapted or redesigned according to customer requirements. The image processing software enables a multitude of applicable inspections. The powerful IPC enables fast data processing so that products can be inspected by two 5-megapixel cameras even at higher production speeds. It is possible to create several test programs which can be controlled by the user or a PLC. Several product variants can also be tested. The missing parts detected by the system are automatically ejected from the conveyor belt. If a missing part should nevertheless remain on the conveyor belt, this is detected by an ejection countercheck, so that it is impossible for a missing part to be brought to further refinement. A congestion detection in the system prevents the backwater in connected systems. The camera system can also be retrofitted into a production line; the layout of the product handling system does not have to be changed. In addition, all interventions are recorded in a log file so that it can be traced at a later point in time what has been changed.
Customer benefits:

The various BV tests ensure the user a consistent quality of the ampoules when they leave the factory for the customer. During further processing there are considerably fewer disturbances, as damaged ampoule strips are discharged directly after the BV station by a compressed air system.

Quality data on product testing can be stored for each batch and reset to zero. A constant tracking of the production quality is thus possible.