Image: The MicroHAWK platform for barcode reading and machine vision (Photo courtesy of Microscan Systems).
Microscan Systems, Inc. (Renton, WA, USA), a provider of embedded clinical barcode readers and machine vision solutions for life sciences, demonstrated advancements of its MicroHAWK platform for barcode reading and machine vision, LVS label verification, and print quality inspection systems at the 69th AACC Annual Scientific Meeting & Clinical Lab Expo, the world’s largest exposition for clinical laboratory products and services.
Microscan’s barcode reading, machine vision, and verification technology serves a wide range of automation and OEM applications and the company’s solutions range from barcode reading, tracking, and traceability to complex machine vision measurement, guidance, barcode verification, and print quality grading. The company was among over 750 exhibitors who displayed pioneering diagnostic technology, including the latest in mobile health, molecular diagnostics, mass spectrometry, point-of-care, and automation at the 2017 AACC Clinical Lab Expo held at the San Diego Convention Center from August 1-3.
Microscan’s MicroHAWK platform provides users a single hardware solution with options to meet any barcode decoding or inspection task, in any integration space, and with scalability to meet unique current and future requirements. The hardware has been designed with life science and OEM applications in mind, focused on specific feature customizations in enclosed devices that can be manufactured and supported by Microscan on a long-term basis to accommodate instrument lifecycles.
The company’s miniaturization technology allows medical device manufacturers, laboratories, and OEMs to use MicroHAWK devices in the most space-constrained installations. For instance, the extremely small size of MicroHAWK smart cameras enables them to be easily embedded for automating processes such as specimen and reagent identification, tracking labware presence and absence, cap type and color identification, dimensional measurements such as tube height and diameter, automated alignment and robotic guidance within turnkey medical devices and instruments.
MicroHAWK barcode readers, which were on display at the event, are equipped with Autofocus technology, enabling flexible positioning in medical equipment and other integration environments. MicroHAWK with Autofocus can read symbols at any distance, while fixed-focus models are factory-configured to decode at set focal distances. Autofocus models offer both an automatic autofocus for continuous symbol location and decoding, as well as software-programmable focus - which allows users the option to set fixed focal distances for Autofocus units from Microscan’s Weblink software user interface. Through direct integration of the Autofocus lens technology into MicroHAWK, Microscan eliminates additional cost to the user, minimizes device size, avoids integration complexity and removes the need for additional optical accessories.
Also on display was Microscan’s LVS-9580 Handheld Barcode Verifier - a high-performance handheld solution for off-line barcode verification to ISO/IEC and GS-1 standards. The LVS-9580 reads and analyzes multiple types of linear (1D) and two-dimensional (2D) barcodes up to 3.0 inches (76.19 mm) wide and up to 2.25 inches (57.15 mm) tall, located on a wide range of surfaces. It enables users to test newly designed labels for quality and compliance issues before printing.
Microscan also ran live demonstrations of its LVS-7510 Print Quality Inspection System, configurable into manufacturing lines and printers to check label accuracy on the fly during label printing. It is used for 100% label inspection including 1D/2D barcode verification, OCR, serialization and blemish detection in medical device manufacturing, packaging and other industries. The LVS-7510 identifies errors in code readability and compliance as codes are printed, allowing manufacturers to address printing or formatting issues before incurring fines and scrapped product down the supply chain. Both in-line and off-line verification solutions address the growing need for compliance to the FDA’s Unique Device Identification (UDI) initiative, GS1 and HIBCC data structure, as well as other regulated barcoding and product serialization standards.