Profile: Cognex Corp (CGNX.OQ)
14 Mar 2014
Cognex Corporation (Cognex), incorporated on January 7, 1981, is a provider of machine vision products that capture and analyze visual information in order to automate tasks, primarily in manufacturing processes, where vision is required. The Company has two operating divisions: the Modular Vision Systems Division (MVSD) and the Surface Inspection Systems Division (SISD). MVSD develops, manufactures, and markets modular vision systems and ID products that are used to automate the manufacture and tracking of discrete items, such as cellular phones, aspirin bottles, and automobile wheels, by locating, identifying, inspecting, and measuring them during the manufacturing or distribution process. SISD develops, manufactures, and markets surface inspection vision systems that are used to inspect the surfaces of materials processed in a continuous fashion, such as metal, paper, nonwoven, plastic, and glass, to ensure there are no flaws or defects on the surfaces.
Cognex serves three primary markets: factory automation, semiconductor and electronics capital equipment, and surface inspection. Factory automation customers, who are included in the Company’s MVSD segment, purchase Cognex vision products and incorporate them into their manufacturing processes. It includes a range of customers across a variety of industries, including automotive, consumer electronics, food and beverage, health and beauty, pharmaceutical, and medical devices. The factory automation market also includes customers who purchase Cognex vision products for use outside of the assembly process, such as using ID products in logistics automation for package sorting and distribution.
Semiconductor and electronics capital equipment manufacturers, who are included in the Company’s MVSD segment, purchase Cognex vision products and integrate them into the automation equipment that they manufacture and then sell to their customers to either make semiconductor chips or assemble printed circuit boards. Surface inspection customers, who consist of the Company’s SISD segment, are manufacturers of materials processed in a continuous fashion, such as metal, paper, nonwoven, plastic, and glass.
Vision software provides users the combination of a full general-purpose library of Cognex vision tools with the cameras, frame grabbers, and peripheral equipment of their choice. The vision software runs on the customer’s personal computer (PC), which enables integration with PC-based data and controls. Applications based upon Cognex vision software perform a range of vision tasks, including part location, identification, measurement, assembly verification, and robotic guidance. Cognex’s VisionPro software offers advanced programming with a graphical development environment.
Vision systems combine camera, processor, and vision software into a single, rugged package with a user interface for configuring applications. These general-purpose vision systems are designed to be programmed to perform a range of vision tasks, including part location, identification, measurement, assembly verification, and robotic guidance. Cognex offers the In-Sight product line of vision systems in a range of models.
Unlike general-purpose vision systems that can be programmed to perform a variety of vision tasks, vision sensors are designed to deliver solutions for a limited number of common vision applications, such as checking the presence and size of parts. Cognex offers the Checker product line of vision sensors that perform a variety of single-purpose vision tasks.
ID products read codes (e.g., one-dimensional barcodes or two-dimensional data matrix codes) that have been applied or directly marked on discrete items during the manufacturing process. Manufacturers of goods ranging from automotive parts, pharmaceutical items, aircraft components, and medical devices are using direct part mark (DPM) identification to ensure that the appropriate manufacturing processes are performed in the correct sequence and on the right parts. In addition, DPM is used to track parts from the beginning of their life to the end, and is also used in supply chain management and repair.
Cognex also offers applications in the automatic identification market outside of the manufacturing sector, such as using ID products in logistics automation for package sorting and distribution. Cognex offers the DataMan product line of ID readers that includes both hand-held and fixed-mount models.
Surface Inspection Systems
Surface inspection systems detect, identify, track, and report visual defects in any continuous material or process, such as metal, paper, nonwoven, plastic, and glass. The Smart View Web Inspection System is targeted at applications that require accurate surface defect detection and identification. The SmartAdvisor Web Monitoring System is a process monitoring system that is used to track defects to their source and determine the root cause. These systems can be delivered as standalone or integrated solutions.
ONE VISION DR
NATICK MA 01760