ANN ARBOR, MI Total sales of machine vision components and systems increased 12 percent to $1.65 billion in the first nine months of 2014, according to statistics issued by AIA, the industry’s trade group. That was the best nine-month start by the North American machine vision market since AIA began tracking quarterly statistics in 2009.

Total machine vision sales include sales of machine vision components and systems. Total machine vision components were up 18 percent to $230 million through October, while total machine vision systems were up 12 percent to $1.42 billion.

The third quarter of 2014 was especially strong for machine vision systems, which posted growth of 19 percent. Machine vision components also increased in the third quarter by two percent over last year. Every component and system category increased in the third quarter of 2014 except for lighting and imaging boards. Smart cameras (44 percent), optics (16 percent), software (14 percent), and ASMV systems (14 percent) were the standout individual categories in terms of year over year growth for the third quarter of 2014.

“The sustained growth of the machine vision market in North America this year is very promising,” said AIA President Jeff Burnstein. “We continue to see interest for machine vision products growing outside the factory in industries like life sciences and security, which is great for the long term health of this market.”

“Despite the tempered expectations of AIA membership after the strong first half of the year, the market continued to grow in the third quarter,” added Alex Shikany, AIA’s Director of Market Analysis. “Our most recent survey shows that AIA members expect machine vision components to increase and systems to remain flat in the next six months.”

In addition to its quarterly sales tracking report, AIA offers its Global Machine Vision Camera Market Study, which is available at a discounted rate to AIA members. AIA also prepares studies on special topics and industries, which it makes available to all AIA members free of charge on its website,