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Quasar: the intelligent optical sorter


The ever stringent quality standards in the seed industry are creating new technical challenges for big and small seed companies alike.

Helping seed businesses to increase seed quality has been the main drive behind the development of ASM’s sorting technology and, this year, lead to the creation of an entirely new optical sorting machine, designed specifically for the seed industry: the ASM Quasar.

ASM has developed a completely new “Optical Processor” called Logic, which is the heart of the new machine.

This is a combination of very powerful hardware and software algorithms, that closely mimic how humans understand visual information.

In order to determine what something looks like and what are the differences between two objects, the human brain combines colours, shapes, and textures. Optical sorters could only analyse this information separately, until now.

Just like our brain, the Quasar judges many different parameters at the same time, and can “understand” what its cameras are seeing. It automatically knows what is the real colour of a seed, independently of lights and shadows, and the exact shape and texture of every single seed, contaminant or particle. This makes it very accurate in deciding what to keep or reject, and incredibly easy to use, even compared to earlier ASM machines, which are well known for their user-friendliness.

The optical processor also changes how the user interacts with the sorter.

Thanks to the Intelligent Learning system, creating a program is as simple as taking a snapshot of a contaminated seed sample.

The Quasar automatically understands which are the good seeds and suggests what should be rejected. A simple confirmation on the screen and the program is created. Trial-and-error is a thing of the past.

In terms of raw performance, the Quasar is a power to be reckoned with. It builds on the high capacity of the ASM Vision series, maintaining the 360 mm chute (the widest on the market), but features the next generation of 4k full-colour cameras, with the highest optical resolution and the innovative “True-Color” technology to maintain colour definition on very small seeds. The processing speed is lightning fast, with a scan rate of up to 40 kHz and a new ejector algorithm, called Sniper, which drastically reduces product losses.


This is a truly impressive machine that is sure to open many new possibilities for reaching higher levels of purity and yield.