It is likely that the first image that comes to many people’s minds when they hear “Artificial Vision ” is that of an intelligent robot. It is also easily associated with industries that are closer to the general public, such as the automotive industry. Automatic cars, for instance, use this technology to make the driverless vehicle “see” and interpret objects on the road to accelerate, turn or stop immediately.
The reality is that, although still perceived as a concept of the future, the Vision is already implemented in many industries and waste management and recycling is one of them.
What does this technology really involve? How is it being finished and applied today?
The result of Artificial Intelligence
Artificial Vision (computer vision) is a subfield of Artificial Intelligence (AI). Its aim is to enable a machine to understand and interpret a scene or identify an object and classify them. Through the analysis and understanding of the subject, numerical or symbolic information is obtained. This information is processed by a computer and allows the machine to act correctly and efficiently in a specific situation or process.
In recent years, there have been significant developments in AI that have led to solving complex visual tasks in a whole new way. This has been through Deep Learning, a subfield of Machine Learning. Both concepts are from the same extended family of Artificial Intelligence, but it is through Deep Learning that a much more humane character is achieved.
As we have already mentioned in this blog, Deep Learning is based on the use of models called “neural networks”, which are composed of many layers of processing and can be equipped to learn how to make intelligent decisions from well-known examples. A technique that mimics the neural connection of our brains and eventually allows the analysis, automatic extraction and understanding of meaningful data from a single image to a sequence of images.
Eventually, machines are given the “sense of vision” and that is why we use the term Artificial Vision.
Artificial Vision in Waste Management and Recycling
Applied to waste management, Artificial Vision is used to help machines sorting waste. The evolution of technology allows them to do so in an increasingly humanized and even better way.
Taking into account that developed countries are increasingly pressured to produce high quality and purity waste for recycling, many companies in the industry do not hesitate to apply this technology to obtain the benefits of a more automated and efficient system. In fact, it seems increasingly clear that the industry has no other choice but this one.
Today, AI, and Artificial Vision in particular, continues to evolve and enable new ways to audit, recover and sort waste, with solutions ranging from intelligent containers to automation in recycling plants.
Artificial Intelligence and Artificial Vision, combined with pneumatic separation techniques and robotics, make PICVISA a key partner in the automation process characteristic of the Industry 4.0. With a catalogue of robotic systems, they can make automated and intelligent decisions to classify waste – following the parameters with which the system has been programmed -, the company is a leader in the application of Artificial Vision solutions for the waste recycling industry.