New patented online technology instantly rejects compromised seals
A new online seal inspection technology promises to revolutionise quality assurance for many packagers especially food, beverage and healthcare producers that rely on seal integrity for product containment, quality and shelf life. Seal-Scope and Seal-Cam inspection systems integrate into most existing packaging machines without modification. Each generates a unique ‘seal fingerprint’ for every package which in a few milliseconds is compared to statistical data to determine pass or fail. Failed seals trigger a signal to an ejector unit. The technology which has been developed by a team of researchers at The University of Leuven, Belgium is based around a highly advanced statistical algorithm that not only determines pass/fail, it also monitors trends in seal process capability enabling early warnings when pre-set limits are reached.
The system is capable of detecting incomplete seals, wrinkles, folds, creases, holes and product or contaminates in the seal. The sensitivity can be set based on the application and the user’s quality requirements. Seal-Scope analyses the vibration burst signal from a sensor on the sealing bar and is therefore suited to most vertical and horizontal form fill seal machines.
Seal-Cam captures an infra-red image of the residual heat at the seal and is suited to almost any type of package including blisters and trays. The system is easily switched on/off without disrupting production and the initial statistical data for each product is generated in just 30 seals.
Since the technology does not use ultrasound or standard cameras it is unaffected by varying light conditions, the type of product being packaged is irrelevant while opaque packaging presents no issues.
At the first installations in Europe, SealScope and SealCam are proving highly reliable and creating benefits and return on investment that far exceeds the system cost.
RDM Test Equipment is offering a free demonstration at their Hertfordshire head office or via a monthly online webinar. On-site demonstrations and trials will be available early 2013.