Machine Vision Basics – Key Elements

By July 11, 2016May 2nd, 2024Image Acquisition

When designing a machine vision system, it’s important to know the key elements of any vision system. Below is an infographic that helps illustrate the elements.


  • An Image Acquisition System which consists of one or more cameras and associated optics.
  • Illumination which ensures consistency in brightness and contrast overpowering any ambient lighting which exists in the surrounding environment.
  • The Material Handling system which is used to present the part to be inspected to the image acquisition system.
  • The Image Processing System is the software which is used to analyze the images acquired to arrive at a Pass/Fail (or OK/NG) decision.

Additionally, most systems also have a User Interface (or HMI) which allows for operator configuration and for display of results in an operator-friendly manner.

Vision systems should also have a communication interface used for communicating results to complementary equipment for control or operator monitoring.

Each of these elements needs to be carefully selected and designed to ensure optimal operation preventing false negatives (incorrectly rejecting a good part) or the dangerous false positives (incorrectly accepting a defective part).

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