MoldWatcher™ with NightHawk™ 2 is an automated vision system for Injection Molding machines that features a camera with electronically controlled zoom, focus, and aperture.
Our harsh environment NightHawk II cameras include sealed, forced air cooled cameras that allow the MoldWatcher system to be used in high temperature applications like die- casting.
When to Use NightHawk:
MoldWatcher typically is used to detect two images per cycle for both presence and absence of the part on the moving surface of the mold. This is done using non-contact machine vision technology so that prevention occurs prior to mold closing. The NightHawk Harsh Environment camera is used to withstand temperatures, mold release, and other hazards common to the process.
NightHawk cameras are compact and rugged for injection molding applications. On larger presses one person can adjust image focus, aperture, gain, and iris without having to reach over to the camera. It is all software controlled within our MoldWatcher software. The 12x motorized zoom with an integrated lens does all the work so you do not have to worry about specifying the correct lens because it is inside the camera body.
Cable length can become an issue on larger presses due to the previous 5-meter restriction on USB based cameras. This model eliminates this restriction because it is POE (Power Over Ethernet) and cameras and be placed any distance away from the vision controller with longer Ethernet Cables. The compact design allows for easy placement of the camera on the mold, robot base, or platen area of the press.
Avalon’s optional ProcessRx™ for MoldWatcher is an important addition to the powerful inspection system. The process documentation module with image database, event logging and statistical reports is the most advanced and easy to use process documentation system available. The Internet Explorer web browser permits remote access using the LAN, however most problems are exposed when the user can see an actual image of the inspection. ProcessRx™ can be configured to save all the Failed images, all of the Passed images, or both.
This powerful configuration technique allows the user to define exactly what data they need to capture. Data is stored in an SQL database and can be easily exported to other file types and databases, including other process monitoring applications.
A medium sized Tier I supplier to the one of the big three US automotive companies was able to stop Charge Backs and Corrective Action Requests by implementing ProcessRX™ into their Quality Station inspection stations performing Sequencing. Inspection stations with ProcessRX™ kept track of each final assembly by serial number and were able to print PDF reports showing the product had left their plant fully assembled with no further damage. The actual PDF image reports of the final product were reviewed by the customer and all disputes were immediately settled. This was an incredible cost savings.
Injection Molders use Image Event data to determine exactly which cavity has problems with parts or slides sticking in the mold half or with non-filled material. When the mold comes out for repair they know exactly where the problem occurs and can repair the proper area of the mold. Engineers of molding companies know exactly when the MoldWatcher system is being used and under what conditions. This is a time saving feature to determine root causes of problems.