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Machine vision (MV) is an integrated mechanical-optical-electronic-software technology which makes use of optical instrumentation, digital video, electromagnetic sensing, mechanics and image processing technology. The technology's goal is optical and non-contact sensing to receive and analyze a real image in order to provide more information. Machine vision technology is widely used in monitoring and controlling a wide range of applications.
Machine vision makes use of advanced hardware and software to perform functions similar to the human eye, but with greater speed and higher precision. It can viewed as a combination of the human eye with artificial intelligence. Machine vision makes use of image processing techniques and then image analysis techniques. Machine vision systems are often integrated with other external systems. Machine vision is largely used in tasks such as sorting, measurement, counting, locating, decoding, observing and robot guidance.
There are many advantages in using machine vision technology. Compared to other observation and optical techniques, it provides a high level of repeatability and flexibility at a much lower cost. The accuracy involved is fairly high. One of the biggest benefits in using machine vision is that it is a powerful alternative to sampling, and machine vision systems can inspect each and every product produced. Unlike humans, systems deploying machine vision can work without any interruption and for a longer duration of time.
Systems making use of machine vision are largely deployed in in areas like automated manufacturing, medical diagnostics, remote sensing, agricultural/food industry and surveillance.