Key Technology, Inc.

Jan. 11, 2005
New modular electro-optical foundation for optical sorting systems
Key Technology is introducing its new G6 modular electro-optical foundation for optical sorting systems at Interpack Hall 4 / Stand D46. The G6 features an advanced, modular vision engine and an array of new, high-performance monochromatic, color, and VIS/IR cameras. Its high-performance connectivity standards -- such as Camera Link, FireWire and Ethernet -- maximize the underlying technology’s flexibility. Its open-source Linux operating system offers inherent security and ensures long-term development and support.The modular design of the G6 platform allows customers using both current and legacy sorting systems to take advantage of technological advancements by upgrading the applicable module rather than forcing a redesign or replacement of the entire sorter. With Camera Link-compliance, G6 users can select from Key’s existing array of high-performance color, IR, (infrared) and monochromatic G6 linear cameras today and consider future camera and sensor technologies as they become available.The G6 Image Processing Module features Key’s proprietary FPGA (field-programmable gate arrays) chipset technology, which puts the power of an entire electronic rack in a single chip.  With twice the number of filter stages, G6 enables more subtle feature identification and more robust detection of defects. This programmable technology allows for simple future upgrades without module replacement.Unlike traditional sorters that use dedicated signal processing chips, Key’s G6 platform uses a Digital Signal Processing CPU. Customers will gain flexibility in algorithmic implementation to correctly classify defects and benefit from future enhancements to sorting performance and application scope. This powerful Pentium-based CPU promises scalable performance gains for years and the Linux operating system reduces reliance on fickle commercial operating systems.G6 features a programmable Ejector Controller Module that makes the adoption of new ejector operating characteristics or adding upgrades simple. Added power in the EC Module supports more complex ejection operations to generate more effective removal of defective product from the product stream.The G6 platform includes several features that improve reliability and reduce mean time to repair (MTTR). The intuitive graphical user interface (GUI) reduces operator training requirements, simplifies optimum operation of the sorter and provides a window into the “self-aware G6” architecture, ensuring rapid problem identification and resolution. The GUI can reside locally on the sorter and can be accessed remotely via network or Internet, enhancing the flexibility in the operating environment and easing access for remote factory troubleshooting and application assistance. The modular design of the G6 platform allows rapid module swapping and problem isolation. Simplified wiring eases maintenance and troubleshooting. Sophisticated real-time and on-demand diagnostics help avoid costly downtime and detect conditions that could compromise inspection.The G6 platform suits a variety of food applications including fresh and processed fruits and vegetables, nuts, snacks, candies, potato strips and coffee.