Industrial Engineering

A Fly in the Pudding

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Unidentifiable object on foods can be a big issue for customer who ordered the foods. A new ultrasonic technology could tell if foreign objects have fallen into the products, before they leave the facility. Researchers at the Department of Energy’s Pacific Northwest National Laboratory developed a patented inspection method. Sound waves are used to detect foreign objects in processing streams. Beforehand, it is originally developed to look for bone fragments and foreign materials in chicken, but cartilage, metal and plastic can also detected by the system. The PNNL combined both ultrasonic and optical capabilities. It is safer and more effective than inspecting the stream manually because it can be automated. PNNL is currently seeking companies to license this new technology.