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Stone Detection using X Ray Inspection

In a lot of applications, you have naturally occurring stones that get into your product. For example, if your product is beans: stones could mix in from the soil. Or stones are caught on clothing and fall into the product batch. Or they could be intermixed at any point in the production line.


Obviously, you want to remove the stones.

What makes stone removal tricky is shape and density varies wildly, from pebbles to rocks, porous to solid. The denser the stone, the easier it is to detect. It’s the smaller, thinner stones that are more likely to slide through your production line.

The ability of your X-ray system to find these will depend on the density and profile of the stone. Some stones are as thin as shards of glass; some are round and full. The X-ray system must be able to detect all types of densities and sizes.

An applicable X-ray system will need certain characteristics:

  • A high-contrast detection system
    • This is essential to make stone-finding as easy as possible
  • A high-resolution system
    • Able to produce contrasted images with the depth that can show the density profile of the stone
  • A multiple-beam system
    • Gives multiple angles of the product to make it easier to find the stones


Peco InspX can say with pride that our systems can find any stone of meaningful size in your product. By “meaningful size”, we mean around 2 mm in diameter. Older technology will find it harder to find something that small.

We’re often asked if our systems can find “mud balls”. A mud ball is what it sounds like: a ball of mud that holds small splinters of stones. Those stones are quite visible and findable with our X-ray machines.

Once you’ve found your stones, you want to make sure you get your product out of the line. A pouch product may be easy to eject. But with a bulk product, you want a sophisticated air blast or gate system that ensures those things get out of the feed stream with the least amount of loss possible.

We would be delighted to work with you on your stone detection project. And we know you’ll see a big difference.

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