SQU students develop New AI-based Date Sorting System

SQU students develops AI sorting system for Date

Muscat: A group of students from the College of Engineering at Sultan Qaboos University succeeded in making a technical innovation using computer vision, an artificial intelligence techniques, and integrating it with robotics systems, in order to identify the quality of dates automatically and introduce artificial intelligence technology in the food industries.

The project aims to increase food quality by using artificial intelligence to automate food inspection and sorting, increase factory production capacity, reduce the time required to inspect and sort dates, and contribute effectively to food security.

Asaad bin Saeed Al Hinai, a member of the student project team, said that the date industry is one of the important industries in the Sultanate of Oman, as it is one of the sources of income and trade. However, date producers face challenges in the sorting process, especially in identifying dates that are spoiled or unsuitable for human consumption, and artificial intelligence technology plays a role in the process of sorting them. An important role in improving the date sorting process in factories, as we carried out a date sorting project using computer vision algorithms and robotics.

He added that the system works to operate artificial intelligence in sorting dates automatically, as the system automates the process of sorting edible dates from spoiled ones, distinguishes the quality of dates automatically, identifies the condition of dates that pass through a production line using artificial intelligence, then transfers them to the appropriate path, and counts the number of dates. Which are sorted and the percentage of spoiled dates from good ones.

For his part, Ahmed bin Muhammad Al Habsi, a member of the student project team, explained that the process of introducing artificial intelligence is in food sorting, which is very important, as it begins with introducing the dates into the production line via the conveyor belt, after which the dates are photographed from the top of the production line using a high-resolution camera. During which good dates are identified from spoiled ones using computer vision, then the dates are sorted through special gates in a production line.

Saleh bin Yahya Al-Ghanami, a member of the student project team, pointed out that there are many challenges facing factories, such as manually sorting spoiled or unusable products. This method is economically expensive, and relying on the human factor may reduce the quality of dates. Al-Ghanami stated that the performance of the system is measured in terms of the speed of sorting (the amount of dates that are sorted within an hour), and the error rate of examination and sorting, stressing that the system increases the efficiency of the date sorting process compared to traditional methods.

It is worth noting that the artificial intelligence system can be introduced in other areas, represented in inspection and quality control operations in various factories that need a precise examination of the quality of products.

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