Application of area-scan sensors in sensor-based sorting
In the field of machine vision, sensor-based sorting is an important real-time application that enables the separation of a material feed into different classes. While state-of-the-art systems utilize scanning sensors such as line-scan cameras, advances in sensor technology have made application of area scanning sensors feasible. Provided a sufficiently high frame rate, objects can be observed at multiple points in time. By applying multiobject tracking, information about the objects contained in the material stream can be fused over time. Based on this information, our approach further allows predicting the position of each object for future points in time. While conventional systems typically apply a global, rather simple motion model, our approach includes an individual motion model for each object, which in turn allows estimating the point in time as well as the position when reaching the separation stage. In this contribution, we present results from our collaborative research project and summarize the present advances by discussing the potential of the application of area-scan sensors for sensor-based sorting. Among others, we introduce our simulation-driven approach and present results for physical separation efficiency for simulation-generated data, demonstrate the potential of using motion-based features for material classification and discuss real-time related challenges.