GlaxoSmithKline Banks on the Flexibility of KEYENCE’s Vision Systems

Every minute, 15,000 patients around the world take a dose of medication produced at GSK Evreux. This high production volume entails a highly complex traceability system. One of the inhaled forms produced by GSK is the Diskus, a multidose powder inhaler that delivers a metered dose of medication. The marking of each Diskus is checked using a three-camera XG Vision System from KEYENCE. The first camera uses OCR to check an in-house code that is engraved. The second checks the placement and diameter of the label; this inspects it for tears and makes sure that the legal notices printed on it are legible. 

“We were looking for a vision system that did not require any direct operator intervention and thus would eliminate the risk of incorrect adjustments,” explains Christophe Fourcin of GlaxoSmithKline. “Operators simply enter the code of the product to be inspected into the PLC controlling the vision system. That way they don’t have to deal with the complex matter of programming the thirty or so sizes used.” 


“The very nature of the detection performed means that we have to routinely make changes to the vision system. That’s one of the reasons why we chose KEYENCE’s XG Vision System. We wanted to have a tool that was ours and that we could modify as needed. With competing brands, reprogramming takes time and money. We have to wait for the estimate and then wait again for the new programming to be done. It makes us feel somewhat hog-tied. With the XG, we’re in control and can even contact KEYENCE for assistance,” says Mr Fourcin. 

“It was easy to set up. KEYENCE’s engineer provided us with the programming template so that we could go on from there. I make the necessary changes myself, which I learnt how to do during a one-day training session provided by KEYENCE. The language is intuitive and the programming tools aren’t that complicated. As a result, we were self-sufficient in no time. We also noticed that detection is stable over time and does not cause any false rejects. Determining the right inspection settings is very easy with the XG Series,” says Mr Fourcin. 

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Keyence are exhibiting at The Advanced Materials Show on stand 1222.