Patent Number: 6,294,747

Title: Inspection machine for surface mount passive component

Abstract: This invention is a visual inspection machine for a surface mount passive component (chip) made up of a rotating circular loader wheel inclined to the horizontal and including an upper exposed wheel surface against which an inventory of chips is placed for loading and a rim in which a plurality of cavities, of a size and shape to accept a single chip therein in an upright position, are formed, each cavity defined by a pair of spaced-apart cavity side walls, a rear cavity wall, and having a corner chamfer leading down thereinto from the wheel surface located on the side wail of the cavity in the direction of rotation of the loader wheel, a first vacuum station connected to the loader wheel for providing vacuum power in each cavity for retaining each chip in a cavity for a first inspection, a first inspection station, external the loader wheel, for viewing a first side surface of the chip during its location in the cavity on the loader wheel, a transfer wheel defined by an outer marginal edge, the wheel arranged planar to the loader wheel and in coordinated juxtaposed movement therewith for receiving the chips from the cavities in the loader wheel to the outer marginal edge of the transfer wheel for subsequent movement therewith, a second inspection station, external the transfer wheel, for viewing other external surfaces of the chips during their movement on the transfer wheel, computer/processor for tracking the positions of the chips that have passed and failed inspection by the first and the second inspection station, first removal means for ejecting chips that have failed inspection from the outer marginal edge of the transfer wheel for capture at a location, and a second removal station for removing chips that have passed inspection from the outer marginal edge of the transfer wheel for capture at another location.

Inventors: Liu; Donald (San Diego, CA), Braden; Denver (San Marcos, CA), de Vera; Romulo V. (San Diego, CA), Hawkes; Malcolm Vincent (Escondido, CA)

Assignee: Electro Scientific Industries, Inc.

International Classification: B07C 5/34 (20060101); B07C 5/344 (20060101); B07C 005/344 ()

Expiration Date: 09/25/2018