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Fig. 2. This filter is designed to find large flaws.


automatic or assisted evaluations (i.e. therefore reduces part cost). Tis also helps address the scarcity of inspectors by reducing workload. Metalcasting facilities can imple- ment these automation and software tools in simple to complex systems with lots of varia- tion in between. Typically, the transition to using digital imaging and software tools starts with man- ual inspection. In this mode, the system stops at every position and the opera- tor evaluates the image and makes a decision. In some cases, the images are automatically acquired and stored for future evaluation.


Once the digital imaging and


automation has been accepted at the plant and everyone is comfortable with the results, a common next step is to use some kind of semi-automatic or assisted inspection. In this mode, the system stops at every position, the software marks anomalies based on parameter settings for each view, and an operator makes a decision using this additional information. During this stage, the organization typically uses the data to begin correlating results with the manual inspection mode in order to gain confidence that the software tools are successful in helping the operator make better and faster decisions.


58 | MODERN CASTING May 2016


Once the software tools have


proven to be effective (to whatever level of confidence is required), the next step is to start operating in a supervised automatic inspection mode. In this mode, the system typically


Te detectable flaw size depends on the focal spot size, detector resolution and magnification–not the software.


involves the human inspector only if the casting has perceived defects. When the software detects something suspicious, the areas are marked and the operator reviews images and either


confirms the software decision or reclassifies and overrides it. Tis step is critical to proving if the application is suitable for fully automatic defect recognition operation. In many cases by this stage of implementation, the automated inspection system has met the goals of more reliable evaluations, reduced inspection times and reduced work- load for the inspectors. At this point it becomes evident whether the appli- cation is suitable for fully automatic ADR, where the system is making both accept and reject decisions automatically without any operator intervention. Tis mode of operation balances the risk of the system missing an indication and the cost incurred by falsely rejected castings. To address this balance, some users use a remotely sta- tioned operator who eliminates any false rejects by reviewing all suspect images at a networked computer. Tis is especially effec- tive if the opera- tion is running several systems


simultaneously. Tis transition can be tough, but


the return on investment is normally worth it. Organizations that identify a champion who manages and teaches


Fig. 3. Shown is an example of filtering and intelligent binariation.


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