A method for localizing and isolating an errant process includes the steps of retrieving from a defect image database a selection of images each image having image content similar to image content extracted from a query image depicting a defect, each image in the selection having corresponding defect characterization data. A conditional probability distribution of the defect having occurred in a particular process step is derived from the defect characterization data. A process step as a highest probable source of the defect according to the derived conditional probability distribution is then identified. A method for process step defect identification includes the steps of characterizing anomalies in a product, the anomalies detected by an imaging system. A query image of a product defect is then acquired. A particular characterized anomaly is then correlated with the query image. An errant process step is then associated with the correlated image.
STATEMENT REGARDING FEDERALLY SPONSORED RESEARCH OR DEVELOPMENT
This invention was made with government support under contract DE-AC05-96OR22464, awarded by the United States Department of Energy to Lockheed Martin Energy Research Corporation. The United States government has certain rights in this invention.