Teat detection for an automated milking system
Hunt Duffy, Aidan (2006) Teat detection for an automated milking system. Master of Engineering thesis, Dublin City University.
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Application time when placing all four cups to the udder of a cow is the primary time constraint in high capacity group milking. A human labourer can manually apply four cups per animal as it passes on a rotary carousel in less than ten seconds. Existing automated milking machines typically have an average attachment time in excess of one minute. These systems apply the cups to each udder quadrant individually. To speed up the process it is proposed to attach all four cups simultaneously. To achieve this, the 3D position and orientation of each teat must be known in approximate real time. This thesis documents the analysis of a stereo-vision system for teat location and presents further developments of the system for detection of teat orientation. Test results demonstrate the suitability of stereovision for teat location but indicate that further refinement of the system is required to produce increased accuracy and precision. The additional functionality developed for the system to determine teat orientation has also been tested. Results show that while accurate determination of teat orientation is possible issues still exist with reliability and robustness.
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