ANN ARBOR, MI—Total machine vision sales in North America rose 3% compared to the second quarter of 2011, according to new statistics from AIA, the industry’s trade group.

According to AIA, total machine vision sales include sales of machine vision systems and components. Sales of machine vision systems, the largest category, rose 2% year-over-year while sales of machine vision components saw an increase of 10%.

The increase in sales of machine vision components resulted primarily from sales of cameras, the largest machine vision components market in North America, which rose by 13% compared to second quarter 2011. Sales of other machine vision components also rose on a year-over-year basis: software (24%); imaging boards (10%); optics (2%) and lighting (1%).

“We welcome a return to growth,” says AIA President Jeff Burnstein. “These encouraging results break the pattern of the previous three quarters, which recorded year-over-year declines.”

Paul Kellett, AIA’s director of market analysis, notes that while second quarter results are up from the first quarter of this year, industry experts do not expect an ongoing improvement. “Fifty-three percent of the experts surveyed expect flat sales, while 37% believe sales will decrease in the next two quarters,” Kellet says. “Only 10% expect an overall improvement in machine vision sales.”

AIA’s Quarterly Machine Vision Sales Tracking Report is available free of charge to all AIA members participating in AIA’s sales data program. In addition to its sales tracking report, AIA recently prepared a comprehensive Machine Vision Camera Market Study available at a discounted rate to AIA members. AIA also prepares studies on special topics, such as its soon-to-be-released study on Additive Manufacturing and Automation, which it makes available to all AIA members free of charge on its website, Vision Online.