Microscan Introduces the World’s Smallest Platform for Barcode Reading to Advanced Machine Vision

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MicroHAWK cameras redefine industrial imaging as the basis for all automated tasks based on visual data from captured images, from barcode reading to inspection to guidance.

MicroHAWK provides the world's smallest industrial imaging platform to enable the range of 2D imaging and inspection tasks.

Microscan, a global manufacturer and pioneer of miniature barcode imagers and machine vision smart cameras for industrial automation, redefines imaging technology as a single, omni-capable platform for any automation task. With the scalability to accomplish basic to high-performance auto ID as well as simple to advanced machine vision in one, MicroHAWK® offers the breadth of Microscan software and hardware options on the smallest smart camera suite ever developed. The MicroHAWK family includes a fully-integrated imaging engine and three industrial-rated miniature imagers with unrivaled flexibility, ease of use, and universal application potential.

A leader in the miniaturization of industrial data acquisition technologies, Microscan founded its company and namesake with the invention of the world’s smallest and fastest laser barcode scanner in 1982 (the MS-1000). With the ability to accomplish high-performance barcode reading in the most space-restricted instruments, Microscan quickly became the leading brand of embedded barcode readers for clinical applications and has remained committed to space-efficiency in the design of its products. When the company acquired Siemens’ Machine Vision business in 2008, Microscan combined the compact form factor of its products with new and vast machine vision inspection capabilities. Microscan released the world’s smallest smart camera (Vision MINI®) on the award-winning AutoVISION® Machine Vision platform and coined the term “Auto ID+” – the first technology to go beyond barcode reading to add basic inspection tasks such as counting, measurement, OCR, and more within a single, fully-integrated device.

With the release of the MicroHAWK platform in 2015, Microscan re-engineered the form factor of its barcode reader line from the ground up to offer the industry’s most capable and intuitive barcode imagers at an incredibly small scale. These micro-sized devices offer a fully-configurable framework, allowing users to choose decoding capability, decode speed, lighting, camera lens, and sensor, and to package them into the MicroHAWK reader with the ideal dimensions, industrial rating, and connectivity required by the application. This revolutionary flexibility has laid the groundwork for even more feature combinations for MicroHAWK imagers.

Today, Microscan announces that it has now added its full range of machine vision tools to the ultra-compact MicroHAWK platform, releasing the world’s smallest fully-integrated machine vision systems. Paired with Microscan’s browser-based WebLink UI, simplified AutoVISION Machine Vision Software, or the advanced Visionscape® Machine Vision Software, MicroHAWK Smart Cameras (MV-20, MV-30, and MV-40) expand the concept of industrial imaging from barcode imaging alone to the universal imaging of any code, text, or part feature to accomplish any automation task based on visible data. MicroHAWK now provides users a single hardware solution with options to meet any decoding or inspection task, in any integration space, and at any experience level.

With the addition of machine vision, the MicroHAWK platform gains scalability beyond its selectable hardware configurations. Now users can also choose their device’s software capability to accomplish barcode reading, machine vision, or a combination of the two on a single, adaptable platform. The browser-based WebLink interface provides MicroHAWK cameras with industry-leading X-Mode decoding technology for reading any code, from high-contrast 1D to the most challenging direct part marks (DPM). This interface offers intuitive controls and does not require software installation, enabling users to integrate MicroHAWK into any system with ease. Alternately, AutoVISION software provides MicroHAWK with Auto ID+ capability for the barcode reading performance of WebLink plus a range of inspection tools offered through Microscan’s machine vision library, scalable to Visionscape for complex inspection.

The launch of MicroHAWK machine vision also ushers in the latest revision of Microscan’s AutoVISION 4.0 software, featuring an expanded toolset in a simplified interface for basic to mid-range machine vision applications. AutoVISION 4.0 adds a Circle Measure Tool for measuring features like drill holes; color tools for detecting and matching colored objects like test tube caps; support for autofocus in the MicroHAWK MV-30, MV-40, and Vision HAWK® smart cameras; and support for Microscan’s PC-based GigE (gigabit Ethernet) machine vision cameras. AutoVISION continues to be fully scalable to Microscan’s comprehensive machine vision software, Visionscape, for the most advanced inspection tasks and custom machine vision programming. With unrestricted software capability now available for MicroHAWK, users are able to address the breadth of applications image-based ID, measurement, gauging, defect-detection, and guidance from the smallest devices available.

Learn more about the MicroHAWK platform or request a demo at http://www.microscan.com/microhawk.

About Microscan
Microscan is a global technology leader in precision data acquisition and control solutions serving a wide range of automation and OEM applications. Founded in 1982, Microscan has a strong history of innovation that includes the invention of the first laser diode barcode scanner and the Data Matrix symbology. Today, Microscan remains a technology leader in automatic identification and machine vision with extensive solutions for ID tracking, traceability, and inspection, ranging from basic barcode reading to complex machine vision inspection, identification, and measurement.

As an ISO 9001:2008-certified company recognized for quality leadership in the U.S., Microscan is known and trusted by customers worldwide as a provider of quality, high-precision products. Microscan is a subsidiary of Spectris plc, a leading supplier of productivity-enhancing instrumentation and controls.

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Shaina Warner
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