• New technology improves quality control in manufacturing by identifying inconsistencies and anomalies in vision inspection datasets.
  • Neurala Announces Strategic Partnership with IMA Group to Accelerate AI Technology
  • Collaboration will improve quality inspection with AI-powered data analysis for Industrial IoT

Vision AI software company Neurala has made some news recently. At the end of October, it announced a strategic partnership for AI-powered data analysis, and today it announced a new quality control AI technology.

Today, Neurala announced the launch of AI “explainability” technology, purpose-built for applications in industrial and manufacturing. The new feature helps manufacturers improve quality inspections by accurately identifying objects in an image that are causing a particular problem or present an anomaly. 

“Explainability is widely recognized as a key feature for AI systems, especially when it comes to identifying bias or ethical issues. But this capability has immense potential and value in industrial use cases as well, where manufacturers demand not only accurate AI, but also need to understand why a particular decision was made,” said Max Versace, CEO and co-founder of Neurala. “We’re excited to launch this new technology to empower manufacturers to do more with the massive amounts of data collected by IIoT systems, and act with the precision required to meet the demands of the Industry 4.0 era.” 

Neurala’s explainability technology was built to address the digitization challenges of Industry 4.0. Industrial IoT systems are constantly collecting massive amounts of anomaly data – in the form of images – that are used in the quality inspection process. With the introduction of Neurala’s explainability feature, manufacturers can derive more actionable insights from these datasets, identifying whether an image truly is anomalous, or if the error is a false-positive resulting from other conditions in the environment, such as lighting. This gives manufacturers a more precise understanding of what went wrong, and where, in the production process, and allows them to take proper action – whether to fix an issue in the production flow or improve image quality.

Manufacturers can utilize Neurala’s explainability feature with either Classification or Anomaly Recognition models. Explainability highlights the area of an image causing the vision AI model to make a specific decision about a defect. In the case of Classification, this includes making a specific class decision on how to categorize an object; or in the case of Anomaly Recognition, it reveals whether an object is normal or anomalous. Armed with this detailed understanding of the workings of the AI model and its decision-making, manufacturers will be able to build better performing models that continuously improve processes and efficiencies. 

Explainability is now available as part of Neurala’s cloud solution, Brain Builder, and will soon be available with Neurala’s on-premise software, VIA (Vision Inspection Automation). The technology is simple to implement, supporting Neurala’s mission to make AI accessible to all manufacturers, regardless of their level of expertise or familiarity with AI. With no custom code required, anyone can leverage explainability to gain a deeper understanding of image features that matter for vision AI applications. 

Strategic Partnership

Neurala announced a new strategic partnership with global manufacturing leader IMA Group. The partnership will deliver AI solutions for industrial machines, focused on field testing of AI that enables monitoring and provides actionable insights from data collected through industrial internet of things (IIoT) systems. 

IMA is a global leader in the design and manufacture of automation equipment for the processing and packaging of pharmaceuticals, cosmetics, food and beverages. The company’s partnership with Neurala is the latest in its efforts to help industrial organizations realize Industry 4.0 initiatives, with AI and automation playing a key role. 

“As the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) becomes commonplace – with dozens of sensors and cameras gathering product data, as well as basic diagnostics from industrial equipment – manufacturers critically need human-level AI that can extract actionable insights from that data at the compute edge,” said Max Versace, CEO and Co-Founder, Neurala. “Data without AI is not useful, and off-the-shelf cloud-based AI is not cut out for the manufacturing floor. Unlike traditional AI solutions, Neurala’s technology is trained at the edge, enabling it to continuously learn based on manufacturers’ data as it varies across specific machines and production runs. We are incredibly excited to bring this technology together with IMA’s industry-leading solutions and expertise. Our new partnership will demonstrate just how far edge AI can go in solving industrial monitoring challenges on a global scale.”    

Neurala will work with IMA to deliver its technology directly on industrial machines, at the compute edge, allowing operators to quickly and independently set up advanced AI systems without requiring specialized expertise. 

“Today, factory floors are more complex than ever, and manufacturers are challenged when it comes to managing the extremely high volume of data they’re amassing. To become even more competitive on the global stage, and to help manufacturers overcome this complexity, IMA must improve not only the quality of our products, but also, internal visibility on equipment health and productivity,” said Dario Rea, Director of Corporate Research & Innovation, IMA Group. “These competitive factors are even more acute in light of the global changes we have seen this year. Our commitment to building a company that is defined by innovation, technology and AI is greater than ever before, and our partnership with Neurala represents a key step in that commitment.”  

As part of the partnership, IMA has made a targeted investment in Neurala. 

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