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Proceedings Paper

Automated tag reading system for material tracking
Author(s): Larry E. Banta; Kimberly A. Rosenberry-Friend; Franz A. Pertl
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Paper Abstract

An automated product tag reading system based on CCD cameras and computer image processing has been developed by West Virginia University, and demonstrated at the Weirton Steel Corporation. The system was developed to read painted steel identification tags which are fastened to the ends of steel slabs. The prototype was mounted on a slab hauler and tested in a steel mill environment. It demonstrated the ability to survey a wide-angle image of a scene, locate the target tags in the image, pan and zoom on each one in turn, and read the contents of the tag -- both bar code and alphanumeric code. The system could communicate via radio modem to a stationary computer which could be interfaced to the plant's inventory management database. We are aware of no other system which can both point and read a bar code scanner. The pointing function is important, in that it allows operation in bright sunlight or at long distances: two conditions where humans encounter difficulties in aiming. Our system can read 50-mil bar codes at distances of 30 feet without the use of retro reflective targets. This paper provides an overview of the technical approach used, and the results of stem testing.

Paper Details

Date Published: 26 September 1997
PDF: 8 pages
Proc. SPIE 3208, Intelligent Robots and Computer Vision XVI: Algorithms, Techniques, Active Vision, and Materials Handling, (26 September 1997); doi: 10.1117/12.290298
Show Author Affiliations
Larry E. Banta, West Virginia Univ. (United States)
Kimberly A. Rosenberry-Friend, West Virginia Univ. (United States)
Franz A. Pertl, West Virginia Univ. (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 3208:
Intelligent Robots and Computer Vision XVI: Algorithms, Techniques, Active Vision, and Materials Handling
David P. Casasent, Editor(s)

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