Foreign object inspection seminar was convincing with real, practical examples

Practical experience is an important part of the seminars of the HEUFT TeKnowledge series. This quickly became clear to the participants of the event on the subject of foreign object inspection in food at the beginning of February. The convincing HEUFT technologies for improving food safety were demonstrated impressively with a live demonstration of the HEUFT eXaminer XA full container inspection and the presentation of a real example of use at Zentis.

The HEUFT technologies for the inspection of foreign objects are not only first class for the drinks industry.  They also achieve top results when checking the quality of non-transparent food such as dairy products, baby food and jams.  This applies in particular to the HEUFT eXaminer XA full container inspection.  The just under thirty participants of the "I spy with my little eye something which you cannot see -  food safety by means of foreign object detection" seminar could see this for themselves recently.  Because the practical demonstration of the X-ray device was on the agenda in addition to profound talks which provided a wealth of background knowledge.


An all-around inspection of the complete container


The device provides a patented detection which covers 100 per cent of the base area of the container in addition to the sidewall inspection which is particularly good at identifying foreign objects in paste-like products.  The result:  a complete inspection of the complete container volume.  Whether a jar of jam, a can of mushrooms or baby food:  the HEUFT eXaminer XA identified even the smallest foreign objects made of glass and metal in the most varied test containers during the live demonstration. The fact that its image processing and filter functions which point the way ahead can even differentiate product inhomogeneities such as glass facets, alignment marks and other desired glass structures from contamination visibly impressed the participants.




Perfect foreign object detection in facetted jars


This is also one of the main reasons why Zentis GmbH & Co. KG uses the full container inspection explained Beate Höppner, the company´s Production Management Assistant for jams and sweet creams, during her talk.  Because a particularly difficult example is part of the Aachen jam producer´s range:  a facetted jar with alignment marks.  Ms Höppner was finally convinced by the full container inspection because the HEUFT eXaminer XA "always detected" spherical pieces of metal between 1 and 3 mm "perfectly" in the test containers of this type which had been supplied.  She knows:  "Because there is always a risk involved with glass and metal objects".  A used X-ray inspector from an Italian manufacturer was tested first of all in order to minimise this.  However this had several weak points:  neither a complete base detection nor the inspection of facetted jars which is so important to Zentis was possible with this.


The HEUFT eXaminer XA full container inspection beats competitors´ models


An alternative had to be found.  Five systems were on the short list.  Only two competitor´s models and the HEUFT eXaminer XA remained because the other two did not offer a glass in glass detection.  Ms Höppner explained:  "We decided on HEUFT because a number of important aspects were fulfilled".  This includes among other things the complete base detection, the integrated rejector and compressed air monitoring system, the test bottle logs and the HEUFT CleanDesign.  Furthermore the logbook entries in the message stack which guarantee 100 percent traceability, the serial fault stops which avoid broken glass in the rejection area and the software-controlled calibration of the device which prevents costly production stops were very important for Zentis.


Minimum radiation values


In addition the full container inspection was convincing due to its particularly careful, pulsed radiometric measurement.  It provides maximum detection accuracy with minimum radiation exposure.  This is approximately one hundred times greater in the case of the comparable systems of competitors.  While a radiation intensity of 10,000 Gy is considered to be completely harmless when inspecting food this amounts to just 0.000015 Gy in the case of the HEUFT eXaminer XA.


Foreign object inspection also identifies glass faults


According to Ms Höppner there are now three HEUFT eXaminer XA devices with base and sidewall detection in use along three Zentis jar filling lines which have been calibrated for seventeen different jar sizes.  They ensure that products contaminated with glass splinters, stones and foreign objects relating to the fruit itself do not reach the consumer.  In addition they detect glass faults such as cracks, chips, bull´s eyes, bubbles as well as metal and ceramic inclusions the size of a pinhead which can result in the glass breaking.  "We are pleased that these are now being detected" she explained to the interested seminar participants.  "This contributes to further improving the quality of our products at a high level".