OCR for Reading and Scanning Embossed Characters on Cast & Machined Parts

The majority of today’s manufactured products and components have 2D or 3D barcodes, labels, or alphanumeric characters stamped or embossed on their surface, allowing them to be traced back to their manufacturer.

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In production, direct part marking (DPM) is used as an anti-counterfeit technology, and many consider it as a necessary solution in their quest to maintain product quality, track components, and reduce costs.

One major challenge is identifying these part marks or the manufacturer that produced them at the point of service, and even during run-time situations. Rapid identification of a product’s component codes, origin, and destination is now possible with optical character recognition for embossed parts from OCR Solutions.

This software is used to convert and rapidly scan 2D barcodes and 3d embossed characters into human readable text, which can be stored in a database or analyzed as required. By reading this text with speed and accuracy for both flat and embossed characters, components can be tracked through multiple manufacturing value streams in plants, across supply chains, and even through service networks. With the ability to scan embossed codes and process thousands of lot numbers with a high degree of accuracy, OCR Solutions provides component-traceability along the entire production lifecycle.

Using OCR technology, we can capture this data while also providing a full-text transcript in seconds. The solution is able to accurately scan and transcribe text regardless of the size, font or quality of the original image.

With the combination of OCR software and modern video technology, enterprises are able to capture information from parts as they move on a conveyor belt in order to make sure that nothing is lost and parts are labeled correctly. By reading barcodes and serial numbers on components as they are moving down the assembly line, an organization is able to immediately identify if one of its products are faulty or incorrectly labeled, which should result in satisfied customers and reduced strain on quality control operators.

Furthermore, OCR is especially useful for companies with many small packages on their assembly lines. These packages are often difficult to scan manually and can cause problems on automated assembly lines. OCR eliminates the need for line workers to manually enter the data that is encoded on the product’s packaging.

The basics of Optical Character Recognition (OCR) are not that complex. It is a technology that “sees” images and extracts their textual content to convert them into digital text.

Of course, there are various other processes as well that can be used for converting non-textual data into a digital form, such as automatic speech recognition (ASR), but we will stick to OCR for now.

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