Surface Quality Monitoring (SQM) is a powerful tool for automatically measuring the surface quality characteristics of any material. In every surface-forming or treatment operation, there are one or more surface properties that can vary from time to time. These processes can have many variables that affect the surface appearance in different ways. Each process variable ultimately affects what the cost of the end product is and how it is used. The SmartView SMQ package allows the operators to always know the overall surface quality in real time. It can even evaluate the post-processing properties of the product as it is being produced. SmartView SQM provides an accurate on-line evaluation of almost any surface property or process variable that affects the visual appearance of the product.
- Quality values or labels based on product-specific standards
- Accurate real-time surface quality measurement
- Easy system setup and training using visual tool set
- Easy data access through simple user interface, OPC or ODBC
Evaluate Almost Any Surface Property
SQM can evaluate almost any surface property using overall surface texture analysis. Surface texture itself, corduroy patterns, cloudiness, brightness, embossing, or even spangle uniformity are easily evaluated and reported in real time. This enables the operator to make process changes that impact quality before large amounts of off-spec material are made.
If you can see it, SmartView SQM can objectively evaluate it!
SmartView SQM Thinks Like You Do!
The system looks at the surface in much the same way humans do. It looks at an area of the surface and compares that area to what the surface is supposed to look like or what it has looked like in the past. The results are immediate and reported in terms that are currently used to describe the surface quality - terms everyone involved can easily understand.
For instance, if the material is characterized by the size and distribution of spangle patterns, and you label them Poor, Usable, Good, Better, and Best that is what SmartView SQM will report instantly as you are producing the material. Or if the same quality is measured by using a numerical scale from1 to 10, that’s the scale SmartView reports in real time.
Automated Image-Recognition Technology
Actually, even though the use of SmartView SQM looks, and really is, very simple, what is going on behind the scenes is far from simple. SmartView SQM automatically analyzes and groups the sample images of the material. It uses advanced image-processing technology to automatically sort images into groups where like images are in the same group and unlike images are separated into different groups. This way the system learns and memorizes what material of different quality looks like. These groups are then simply assigned labels or numeric values according to mill quality standards. This way the system learns what the user calls different quality levels. Through these two learning steps, the system knows what an image of Poor, Usable, Good, Better, and Best or quality 1 – 10 material looks like. All this knowledge is then stored into the real-time engine that analyzes the material on-line. The on-line system will then use the same advanced image-processing technology to recognize the images its sees. Thus it can automatically report Good (material) when it sees Good material or report quality value of 5 when it sees material having a quality value of 5.