Machine Vision

A brilliant restart

Review Vision 2021

20.10.2021 - For the first time in three years, the machine vision industry made its pilgrimage back to Stuttgart for Vision. It all took place on a smaller scale - fewer exhibitors and visitors than in 2018 - but the joy in view of the reunion outshone everything.

For the new start after two years without Vision, a good 5,400 trade visitors came, about half as many as in 2018. Proportionally more represented were the exhibitors, of whom around 300 came instead of 470 before, almost two-thirds. And logically, the visitors came mainly from Europe: the top 10 nations of origin, apart from Germany, are Italy, Switzerland, France, Austria, the Netherlands, Belgium, Spain, Poland, the UK and Sweden. Contrary to expectations, visitors also came from the USA, Korea, Japan and Taiwan, despite travel restrictions and quarantine regulations.

Visitor quality very high throughout

In Stuttgart, they met representatives of the exhibiting companies who were in excellent spirits. Even on the last set-up day before the start of the trade show, there was a cheerful euphoria that lasted for the entire duration of the trade show. Also fed by the high meeting quality, as the enterprises stressed throughout: ?Yes, there are noticeably fewer visitors there, but for it almost without exception potential customers and customers speak to us because of concrete projects ?, was a formulation, which one heard in many variants from nearly all companies.

This fits in with the results of a flash survey conducted by the European Machine Vision Association EMVA in the run-up to the trade show. This confirmed the importance of trade fairs for the companies, because 60 percent of the participants stated that they had only been able to reach new customers to a limited extent in the last twelve months without personal meetings. These use the trade fair precisely for this purpose.

Incidentally, according to a survey conducted by Messe Stuttgart among visitors, 95 percent confirmed that they always felt safe with the corona measures in place - 3G plus distance and hand disinfection. The fact that the trade fair was now divided between the two halls 8 and 10 instead of the one large hall 1 certainly also played a significant role here. This (in combination with the smaller number of exhibitors) allowed for significantly wider aisles and a relatively airy stand construction overall. For their part, the high ceilings and daylight helped to convey a sense of openness and airiness to attendees.

VDMA forecasts strong industry growth

This positive mood was also matched by the hard facts provided by the VDMA Machine Vision, the conceptual supporter of Vision: at the opening of the trade fair, it confirmed that the order books of the machine vision industry were full to bursting and that demand for components and systems was constantly high. Looking back at 2020, sales in the European machine vision industry did fall by four percent compared to 2019, but the VDMA expects sales in the European machine vision industry to grow by seven percent again in the current year 2021.

Only the persistent chip shortage worldwide is causing worry lines among those responsible: "Camera manufacturers and system integrators alike - there is virtually no company that does not suffer from the chip shortage. While this is not causing a market decline, it is dampening growth prospects," says Mark Williamson, chairman of the VDMA Machine Vision department and managing director of Stemmer Imaging Ltd.

Highlight: the Industrial Vision Days

In addition to the trade show itself, the Industrial Vision Days, organized by VDMA Machine Vision, once again took place. On all three days of the show, the forum offered numerous presentations as well as two panel discussions that complemented the input from exhibitors.

Of particular note was the panel discussion on "Deep Learning: Much ado about nothing, again?", which featured five distinguished experts: Dr. Dietmar Ley (Basler), Jens Hülsmann (Isra Vision), Dr. Olaf Munkelt (MVTec Software), Mark Williamson (Stemmer Imaging) and Donato Montanari (Zebra Technologies). If you missed the panel discussion or would like to watch one of the exciting presentations afterwards, you can still do so. Because the entire Industrial Vision Days were recorded and are available on demand.

The inspect award 2022: finally at Vision again

The inspect award 2022 was again presented at the Vision trade fair - on a smaller scale than usual, but still with overwhelming glamour compared to the Lockdown 2020. Awards were given for the best innovations in industrial machine vision and optical metrology. Thus, the journey to Stuttgart was worthwhile for the attendees not only because of the vision.

The winners of the inspect award 2022 in the Vision category are:

  • 1st place: CBC (Europe) with the ViSWIR lens series of the Hyper-APO series
  • 2nd place: Imago Technologies: Industrial Dashcam
  • 3rd place: Edmund Optics: Techspec CW lens series

The winners of the Automation & Control category:

  • 1st place Göpel Electronic: AOI module for assembly processes with KI MultieyeS plus
  • 2nd place: Visiconsult X-ray Systems & Solutions: Inline X-ray inspection system X H.130 Inline
  • 3rd place: Cretec Cybernetics: Inspection system QBIC Robotic Vision Control

More details on the winning products can be found at Interviews with each of the winning companies will appear in the upcoming issue 6 of inspect.

The next Vision will take place from October 4 to 6, 2022 - again in parallel with the Motek trade fair. From then on, the machine vision trade show is again scheduled to take place every two years.

David Löh, Editor in Chief of inspect


Wiley-VCH GmbH

Boschstraße 12
69469 Weinheim

Landesmesse Stuttgart GmbH

Messepiazza 1
70629 Stuttgart


VDMA Verband Deutscher Maschinen- und Anlagenbauer e.V.

Lyoner Str. 18
60528 Frankfurt

+49 69 6603 0
+49 69 6603 1511

EMVA European Machine Vision Association

Gran Via de Carles III, 84 (3rd floor)
08028 Barcelona

+34 931 80 70 60
+34 931 80 70 60


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