Joan is an Arrayjet Development Manager and in-house inventor.
Joan joined Arrayjet in 2015 as software engineer and now manages the Development team, creating new features and products for our printers as well as improving existing ones.
One of the most challenging and enjoyable projects he’s been a part of was the development of Arrayjet’s Optical QC system, Iris™.
So, Joan. What is the Iris™ system?
Put very simply: twin cameras that sit either side of the print head and interact with our intuitive software.
The cameras move with the print head – very quickly – and capture images of the arrays as they are printed. The results are analysed in real-time, and a quality report is automatically generated for the user.
What did you have to do to make the Iris™ recognise printed slides?
I was part of a great team who captured the requirements of the project, and who did the design and hardware work.
As software engineer at the time, I developed a software system that captured and analysed the images of the printed arrays and compiled a quality report for each substrate printed. We all made those requirements a reality!
Then we undertook a lot of testing and studied how the software analysed thousands of spots!
What was the biggest challenge you overcame?
The first challenge was to make the software understand the images captured; it had to find and recognise the printed spots.
Initially, the Iris was not compatible with nitrocellulose slides as the software could not understand spots printed on nitrocellulose surfaces. We invented a system that made image recognition possible. This invention has a patent which has already been granted in a few countries!
Why did Arrayjet decide to develop Iris™ in the first place?
So that we could manufacture microarray printers with a real-time quality control system.
It gives confidence to customers. They immediately know the quality of their arrays. Customers also save a lot of time – the Iris™ system is dramatically faster than scanning every slide in a batch!
We’re always looking for new innovative ways to expand and optimise our platform.
To learn more about our automated Quality Control system and to discuss your ideas, please drop us a line!