Date of Award
This project consists of working on Hope Globals manufacturing line in their Cumberland, RI facility. The goal is to solve the issue of the missing ink mark on their beaded profile extrusion line. The application of this product is for Tesla, which requires a custom modification of the original part -- the alignment marks need to be in a different location due to fitment issues. Hope Global decided to use an inkjet printer, the Domino Amjet AX350i, to fulfill this necessity. A problem arose with the printing quality on the part in such that the ink mark is not present at random intervals on the product. In order to fix this problem, a vision system was designed along with a pneumatic rejection valve. The purpose of this design is to use an inline sensor to detect a leading edge of each part, which sends a signal to a vision camera that takes a picture of the part as it passes. This image is then run through custom software which counts the ink marks present on the part. If the number of ink marks is non-conforming to the number specified by the program, a 24v I/O rejection signal is sent to a relay which then blips power to a pneumatic valve that rejects the non-conforming part. This design was the end result of the need for 100% accuracy in this design, as well as long term reliability and minimal footprint on the assembly line.
During the fall semester, the design that was chosen was tested and proven to be a viable choice, however some minor adjustments are still needed in order for the design to meet the engineering design specifications. In order to test this design, Gibson Engineering came to the Hope Global facility and installed a rough demo on their production line. This vendor was chosen because they had a product identical to the design that was conceptualized by the Rejection Hotline. In addition to this, Gibson Engineering provides all of the software and programming for the vision system, which, since the design specifications require 100% accuracy, was deemed to be the best choice.
Over the course of the next semester, the Rejection Hotline will go over the additional adjustments that need to be made to the system in order to fulfill the design specifications, as well as continue to design the rejection bin that will direct the rejected parts safely away from workers. The major goal points of next semester are ensuring that rejection system can be installed seamlessly into the production line, and fine tuning the general assembly to ensure that the 100% accuracy goal can be reached.
Berganza, Amilcar; Canavan, Killian; Dickie, Alex; and Pierce, Trevor, "Hope Global -- Design for an Ink Mark Vision Rejection System" (2019). Mechanical Engineering Capstone Design Projects. Paper 63.