skip to Main Content
Addressing CMM Challenges With Automated Quality Control

Addressing CMM Challenges With Automated Quality Control

Creaform introduces a different approach to quality control—automated 3D scanning solutions, which eliminates the limitations of traditional CMM. 

In today’s hypercompetitive market, manufacturing companies face a multitude of challenges on their production lines. Many of those are connected to the quality control process, which aims to ensure the quality of the products being manufactured and sent out to the clients. 

A solution often brought forward to tackle this task is the use of a coordinate measurement machine (CMM). However, traditional CMMs come with their own set of issues such as delays in productivity, difficulties in recruitment and challenges in measuring complex parts, to name a few. And in such a high-speed environment, the smallest productivity slowdowns, added expenses or simple mistakes can take its financial toll on a business, and can translate into loss of contracts and customers’ trust. 

How to Detect Assembly Problems Earlier, Reduce Scrap and Down Time

While traditional CMM can be very precise, its complexity of use and limited speed can delay important information-based decisions. As only a few experts and professionals can execute these tasks and the measurements are taken outside the production line, it can create significant delays in applying corrective measures, which can generate scraps and down time. 

A different approach to quality control aims at addressing these specific challenges—automated 3D scanning solutions. 

Is Automation an Option to Increase Productivity?

Over the past few years, global manufacturing industries have come up with increasingly complex parts and assembly designs to address hypercompetitive markets. However, the diversity of such intricate components requires more advanced quality control processes.

What causes bottlenecks?

Too often, quality control inspections are performed in a room isolated from the production floor where temperature and humidity variations and vibrations are limited. Quality control experts must take samples from the production floor to the quality control lab to perform dimensional inspection with a traditional CMM. These part movements have several major negative impacts. For one, it requires a considerable amount of time and effort to move the parts back and forth from the production line to the lab, often creating unmanageable bottlenecks at the various measurement stations and extended delays in decision-making.

Inspection on the production line

To mitigate these issues and along with the increasing implementation of Industry 4.0, manufacturers are requiring that quality control inspections be conducted right on, or very near the production line to maximise efficiency and streamline communication throughout their entire manufacturing processes. 

As a result, there has never been a greater need to perform dimensional inspections within the production cycle using automated near-line or in-line metrology solutions. 

However, if inspections are carried out on production lines, the inspection pace must follow the production pace to avoid affecting productivity. A stop of production due to inspection bottlenecks cost a lot of money. Therefore, the return on investment of an automated quality control solution is very high.

Solution: Automated 3D scanning

Thanks to new technology and advances in science, manufacturers are using next-generation 3D scanning solutions with unprecedented data acquisition speeds of up to 1.5M measurements/second and faster mesh generations. A mix of high-performance cameras and computer components helps to increase data acquisition and processing speeds. In other words, 3D scanning measuring machines provide a solution that can scan parts continuously, faster than ever. Scanners can even adjust their settings during the scan process to optimise surface acquisition according to different textures and colors. This is a major enhancement since we can scan shiny black and matte white surfaces on the same part.

Increasing Automated Inspection Productivity

By using automated 3D scanners, quality control teams can perform more inspections per hour. Problems, defects, and irregularities can be detected earlier for immediate or future actions. In addition, equipment maintenance and corrective measures in the manufacturing process can be identified and planned ahead. With the possibility to be connected directly with production databases, the information can be automatically synchronised to save even more time.

To continue reading this article, head on over to our Ebook!

 

Check these articles out:

The Fully Automated Production Line

Precision For Guaranteed Stability Using 3D Scanners

Siemens Launches Advance Manufacturing Competence Center in Singapore

Creaform Launches 3D Scanning Solution Suite for the Aerospace Industry

Global 3D Scanning Market Outlook

BMW And Ford Lead $130 million Investment In Start-Up For Solid-State Batteries

 

For other exclusive articles, visit www.equipment-news.com.

WANT MORE INSIDER NEWS? SUBSCRIBE TO OUR DIGITAL MAGAZINE NOW!

FOLLOW US ON: LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter

 

 

Creaform Releases The SILVER Series HandySCAN 3D

Creaform Releases the SILVER series HandySCAN 3D

Creaform has announced the latest addition to its HandySCAN 3D line-up offer, the SILVER series.

Developed and manufactured in North America, the SILVER Series captures highly accurate and repeatable 3D measurements of any complex surface in any location. It represents the best value for money on the market and is supported by a global team of engineers and technicians.

The SILVER series offers a versatile professional 3D scanner, with all the features that made the HandySCAN 3D scanners the reference in the industry:

  • Quality optics: Provides reliable and maximised scan quality with an accuracy of up to 0.030 mm (0.0015 in).
  • 7 lasers crosses: Can quickly capture the surfaces in the entire field of view with a scan area of 275 x 250 mm (10.8 x 9.8 in).
  • Versatility: One device for all shapes and sizes, it masters various objects regardless of the part size, complexity, material, or color.
  • Plug and play: A simple user interface and real-time visualisation offers an ease of use and a short learning curve, regardless of the user’s experience or expertise level.
  • On the go scanning: Portable, lightweight and quick to set up, it can be up and running in less than 2 minutes, either in-house or on site.
  • Available in 2 models: Customers can choose from two models based on their business needs -HandySCAN 307 at US $19,990 or the HandySCAN 700 at US $29,900.

“For the professionals who need to adapt quickly to their customers’ needs and provide better answers to their inquiries, a reliable 3D scanning solution is indispensable,” explains Simon Côté, Product Manager at Creaform.

“The possibilities presented by gathering such precise data can open doors to new projects and strengthen the partnerships with existing clients. It cannot be overstated how 3D scanning and 3D printing technologies have become vital for any small-to-medium sized company.”

 

Check these articles out:

3D Scanner Market To Experience Double Digit Growth Till 2022

Farsound Achieves Aviation Suppliers Association’s Quality System ‘ASA-100’ Certification

Winning, In More Ways Than One

Metrology-Grade 3D Measurements Right on the Production Floor

 

For other exclusive articles, visit www.equipment-news.com.

WANT MORE INSIDER NEWS? SUBSCRIBE TO OUR DIGITAL MAGAZINE NOW!

FOLLOW US ON: LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter

 

 

 

Outlook 2021

Outlook 2021

Experts in the metalworking industry provided their outlook for the coming year and their insights on how manufacturers should navigate whatever challenges the industry might still have along the way to recovery.

The year 2020 had been an extraordinary one, with the COVID-19 pandemic basically putting the global manufacturing industry on a standstill—at least except those essential industries that have scrambled to create medical equipment such as ventilators, and testing kits, as well as personal protective equipment including face masks and face shields.

The pandemic put into spotlight the agility and resiliency needed in every manufacturing industry, as supply chains get stuck and manufacturers are at a loss as to how to obtain their raw materials and parts. 

Nevertheless, the show must go on. And as vaccines are now being developed, it won’t be long until we see light at the end of this tunnel. In this special feature, experts in the metalworking industry provided their outlook for the coming year and their insights on how manufacturers should navigate whatever challenges the industry might still have along our way to recovery.

Creaform

Simon Côté, Product Manager

The metalworking industry will continue to undergo major transformations in 2021. As customers continue to require more complex and sophisticated parts, it is becoming even more crucial for metalworking firms to implement new strategies and technologies to monitor the quality and compliance of final products—all while accelerating throughput due to demanding timelines.

Click here to read Simon’s outlook! 

Faccin Group

Rino Boldrini, Metal Forming Machine Specialist

There is no doubt 2020 will be remembered by most as a year to forget due to the pandemic and the global uncertainty, but it will also be considered as a starting point by those that were able to adapt to the market challenges by implementing or accelerating innovation-focused plans.

Click here to read what Rino expects this year! 

TRUMPF Asia Pacific

Chong Chee Ter, Managing Director

The outlook for the global economy in 2020 deteriorated significantly primarily due to the massive economic impact of the coronavirus pandemic. In 2021, we nevertheless are expecting global GDP growth to return back to the level of 2019.

Click here to read Chee Ter’s insights for 2021! 

igus

Carsten Haecker, Head of Asia Pacific

Metalworking companies across all industries have been facing increasing demands for years now—albeit some levelling was and is still visible in the current pandemic.  To hold their own fortress against international competition, companies need versatile and efficient solutions for a wide variety of production tasks. One solution is the digitalization and networking of production and logistics processes—the basic technologies surrounding Industry 4.0.

Click here to read Carsten’s outlook! 

ISCAR

Eran Salmon, Executive Head of Research and Development

“Business as Usual” is constantly being redefined at ISCAR to meet the varying needs of global metalworking industries. In such a reality, innovative technologies and business opportunities emerge to meet all the challenges ahead. 

Click here to read Eran’s insights for 2021! 

Marposs KK Japan and SEA

Marco Zoli
President

2020 has seen the COVID-19 pandemic act on top of the existing geopolitical factors and on the shift to e-mobility, with the result of accelerating the evolution of the manufacturing environment. The trend of focusing on production resilience is set to continue, resulting in a more localized supply chain and a higher concentration on global players. 

Click here to read what Marco expects for the year! 

Paul Horn GmbH

Lothar Horn, CEO

Despite the restrictions predicted for 2021, most businesses have not stood still. In industries where exhibitions play a major role, it was more a question of how to bring innovations to market—especially with regard to communication. Many of the people I spoke to were initially very excited about the digital possibilities, and certainly rightly so. 

Click here to read Lothar’s outlook for 2021! 

Hexagon Manufacturing Intelligence

Boon Choon Lim, President, Korea, ASEAN, Pacific, India

The year 2020 was characterized by virtual work and learning, as individuals and businesses reinvented themselves to maintain productivity. Optimising the digital landscape will continue in 2021, as companies embrace innovation to meet their needs. 

Click here to read what Boon Choon expects in 2021! 

Sandvik Coromant

Rolf Olofsson, Global Product Manager

To stay competitive, manufacturers need to rely more on digitized processes and less manual interaction. To meet the new requirements, we need to continue to drive the development and digitalization of the manufacturing industry. Sandvik Coromant have a unique venture with Microsoft, combining Sandvik Coromant’s expertise in machining with Microsoft’s technical solutions. 

Click here to read Rolf’s insights for 2021! 

Siemens Digital Industries Software

Alex Teo, Managing Director and Vice President for South East Asia

2020 underscored two important pillars of manufacturing: adaptability and resiliency. With COVID-19 disrupting global supply chains, manufacturers need to inject their production chain with the agility to pivot and adapt to constantly changing market conditions. 

Click here to read what Alex expects in 2021! 

SLM Solutions Singapore

Gary Tang, Sales Director, Southeast Asia

“Change is the only constant in life” and this is characteristically so for 2020 when the COVID-19 pandemic struck. Though businesses were disrupted, but in the same fast pace, opportunities arose for additive manufacturing (AM) in the medical frontline, responding quickly to severe restrictions in supply chains and traditional manufacturing bases.

Click here to read Gary’s outlook for 2021! 

Renishaw ASEAN

Steve Bell, General Manager

Unusual times in 2020 have brough significant difficulties in all walks of life, and manufacturing is no exception. The downturn in industrial activity has been evident during these COVID-19 times—mandatory closures, disruptions to the supply chain, and the stringent social distancing regulations imposed a devastating impact worldwide including the ASEAN region.   

Click here to read what Steve expects this year! 

VDW (German Machine Tool Builders’ Association)

Dr. Wilfried Schäfer, Managing Director

The coronavirus pandemic is leaving deep scars in the German and international machine tool industry. For 2020, the VDW expects a decline in production of 30 percent. After economic data and economic indicators showed an upward trend in the third quarter, uncertainty in the economy is currently increasing in view of the second wave of the pandemic.

Click here to read Dr. Wilfried’s outlook for this year! 

For other exclusive articles, visit www.equipment-news.com.

 

WANT MORE INSIDER NEWS? SUBSCRIBE TO OUR DIGITAL MAGAZINE NOW!

FOLLOW US ON: LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter

 

 

How To Make Sure That Tools And Moulds Build Perfect Parts

How to Make Sure That Tools and Moulds Build Perfect Parts

This article discusses how to guarantee that manufactured parts correspond to the production requirements. Article by Creaform.

At the beginning of a manufacturing process, a mould, die, or jig is engineered according to the theoretical CAD model. The aim of this tooling, made precisely from the nominal model, is to produce parts that correspond to the technical requirements. It turns out, however, that there are often differences between the theoretical model and the reality of an industrial environment. Different phenomena interfere with the tooling, causing problems and imperfections on the parts. Adjustments and iterations, therefore, are required to ensure that the tools and moulds, even if they correspond exactly to their nominal models, produce good parts that meet quality controls and customer demands.

Challenges: Non-Predictable Phenomena

The reality of an industrial environment differs from the theory illustrated in CAD models. During the manufacturing process, several phenomena that are difficult to predict can occur. Spring backs when stamping a die, shrinkage when building a mould made of composite material, or thermal forces when welding two elements together are all good examples of phenomena that impact tooling precision. Nevertheless, modelling the removal of a composite resin, the spring back of a die, the impact of a weld remains difficult, complex, and expensive.

Initially, the tooling is built according to the theoretical model, which is developed to create manufactured parts that meet the production requirements. But, in the reality of the industry, the aforementioned phenomena interfere with the moulded or stamped parts. As a result, the parts do not meet the technical demands and must be adjusted, corrected, and altered in order to pass the quality controls.

Starting with nominal models is, of course, a good first step, but let’s not forget that what manufacturers want is not so much a perfect tooling, but good parts that meet technical requirements and customer needs.

Solution: Iterative Process

When unpredictable phenomena alter manufactured parts, an iterative process of quality control starts. The most commonly used method is to work on the part before adjusting the tooling. More precisely, this method involves producing a part, measuring it, and analysing deviations between the part and the CAD model. Hence, if we notice that there are some missing (or extra) mms in one place, we will go to the corresponding surface on the mould, die, or jig in order to grind or add material. Thus, the iteration is performed on the tooling after measuring the manufactured part.

Once this operation completed, we restart the manufacturing process in order to produce a new part that will be measured to verify if there are any remaining deviations. This iterative process will continue on a loop until we obtain the desired part (i.e., when the manufactured part corresponds to its CAD model).

To continue reading this article, head on over to our Ebook!

For other exclusive articles, visit www.equipment-news.com.

 

Check these articles out:

Benefits Of Improved Multisensor Measurement

Laser Cutting In Manufacturing Process

Siemens Addresses Overheating Challenges in Additive Manufacturing

Fraunhofer Lighthouse Project futureAM Gets Metallic 3D Printing In Shape For Industrial Use

Advantages of Collaborative Development

 

WANT MORE INSIDER NEWS? SUBSCRIBE TO OUR DIGITAL MAGAZINE NOW!

FOLLOW US ON: LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter

 

 

Walter Automobiltechnik Deploys Automated Quality Control Solutions From Creaform

Walter Automobiltechnik Deploys Automated Quality Control Solutions From Creaform

Creaform has installed a second robot-controlled measuring system at Walter Automobiltechnik GmbH (WAT) in Berlin, Germany. WAT is a system supplier of metal assemblies for the automotive industry. It focuses on complex welded assemblies such as motorcycle frames and engine mounts, with a great deal of its work including motorcycle frames, torsion struts and more for the BMW Group.

WAT recently landed the contract for development and series production of the engine mount for BMW’s new fully electric Mini Cooper SE. When the company needed to measure the vehicle’s complex tubular space frame, the decision fell on the MetraSCAN 3D-R, a powerful robot-mounted optical scanner that is Creaform’s automated quality control solution.

The WAT team uses MetraSCAN 3D-R for fully automated measurement of the complex tubular space frames with many connection points for peripheral equipment. 90 percent of the features were such that they could not be reworked, and they would immediately have caused the production line to stop if they were not made exactly to specification. Due to the high-temperature galvanizing required, the process required that many of these features had to be manually reworked. This means that qualitative safeguarding of the finished parts had to be conducted by carrying out 100 percent of the measurement of the series production within a given cycle time. A measurement report and 3D scan had to be saved for each frame, for traceability purposes.

Tommy Laukdrej, Head of Quality Assurance at WAT explained this: “We use two automated measuring cells with handling robots from Panasonic and the Creaform system, which consists of the MetraSCAN 3D-R scanner, the C-Track optical camera system, and the VXelements scanning software. We chose Polyworks from Duwe3d as the measurement evaluation software, because we have been using this software with success and complete satisfaction for over 10 years.”

For other exclusive articles, visit www.equipment-news.com.

Check these articles out:

Use of Technical Assistance Systems to Boost Efficiency & Cut Costs

China’s Changzhou National Hi-Tech District Renews Partnership With ThyssenKrupp

Creaform Names New Vice President Of Operations

Portable 3D Metrology: Combating Common Challenges in Large Parts and Assemblies

ANCA’s Third Tool Of The Year Competition Celebrates Modern Cutting Tools That Shape Our World

Makino: D300 5-axis Vertical Machining Centre

 

 

WANT MORE INSIDER NEWS? SUBSCRIBE TO OUR DIGITAL MAGAZINE NOW!

FOLLOW US ON: LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter

 

 

Metrology-Grade 3D Measurements Right On The Production Floor

Metrology-Grade 3D Measurements Right on the Production Floor

In this article, Guillaume Bull discusses the insights that led to the development of Creaform’s latest optical CMM scanner.

Operator scanning an industrial mold directly on the shop floor.

Over the last few years, manufacturing companies have seen their time to market expedited due to intensified competition on the global scale. In addition, the parts and assemblies that they produce are now more complex than ever.

On the one hand, they face pressure to accelerate their workflows. On the other hand, they must meet quality standards that are constantly rising. Creaform is fully aware that today’s manufacturers are facing tremendous challenges. They know that product quality issues impact scrap rate, production ramp-up, production rate, and downtime, ultimately affecting production costs and overall profitability. Consequently, Creaform’s product development team started on their task, with their clients’ issues and needs in mind.

The objective was to develop the ideal 3D scanner that could be integrated seamlessly into any quality control (QC), quality assurance (QA), first article inspection (FAI), maintenance, repair and operation (MRO), or reverse engineering workflow, and operated by users of any skill level in any type of environment—including the production floor.

Creaform wanted to offer production and quality professionals an alternative solution to the coordinate measuring machine (CMM), where parts are usually brought for FAI and QC. By doing so, non-critical inspections could be relocated and even performed right on the production floor to offload the CMM and keep it available for inspection of crucial dimensions. Creaform also wanted to develop a tool more suited for QA, since quality issues can come from multiple parts, all with different sizes, shapes, and surface finishes. Creaform’s engineers had definitely a lot on their plate.

Faster, More Accurate, and More Versatile Portable 3D Scanner

Creaform’s engineers kept these objectives and challenges in mind when they developed the MetraSCAN BLACK. They were determined to take dimensional measurement speed, accuracy, and versatility to a whole new level.

Speed

Now featuring 15 blue laser crosses, which can take up to 1,800,000 measurements per second, the new metrology-grade 3D scanner offers a larger scanning area and accelerated scanning time. Such a measurement speed—4X faster than the previous version—ensures an optimized acquisition time and data processing rate in order to provide users with instant meshing. In short, the measurement workflow from setup to real-time scans and ready-to-use files has never been faster.

To continue reading this article, head on over to our Ebook!

For other exclusive articles, visit www.equipment-news.com.

 

Check these articles out:

How to Quickly, Easily and Automatically Measure Radii and Defects

Six Key Considerations When Selecting A Gantry CMM

HEIDENHAIN Presents Controls And Measuring Technology For Efficient Production

Samsung Working To Develop Its Vietnamese Supply Chain Networks

API’s Improved vProbe For Enhanced CMM Measurements Directly On Production Floor

Large-Scale Metrology For Oil Industry Production

Sheet Metal Fabricator Cuts Inspection Time by 60%

Unlock The Hidden Potential Of Your CMMs

The Importance of Automation for Networked Manufacturing and Digitisation

 

WANT MORE INSIDER NEWS? SUBSCRIBE TO OUR DIGITAL MAGAZINE NOW!

FOLLOW US ON: LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter

 

 

Creaform Releases Optical CMM Scanner MetraSCAN BLACK

Creaform Releases Optical CMM Scanner MetraSCAN BLACK

Creaform has released its latest version of the MetraSCAN 3D lineup, the company’s advanced optical CMM scanner designed specifically to perform metrology-grade 3D measurements and inspections. As the fastest and most accurate portable optical CMM scanner, the MetraSCAN BLACK can be seamlessly integrated in any quality control, quality assurance, inspection, MRO, or reverse engineering workflow and operated by users of any skill level in any type of environment.

The MetraSCAN BLACK dimensional metrology system has been developed to measure complex parts and assemblies from an array of industries and manufacturing processes, such as automobile, aeronautics, power generation, heavy industry, metal casting, metal forging, sheet metal, plastic injection, composites, etc.

 

Featuring unmatched performance and speed for optimized 3D measurements

  • 4X faster: Featuring 15 blue laser crosses for larger scanning area that take up to 1,800,000 measurements per second and live meshing, ultimately cutting down the time between acquisition and workable files.
  • 4X resolution: MetraSCAN BLACK features a measurement resolution of 0.025 mm (0.0009 in) to generate highly detailed scans of any object.
  • More accurate and traceable measurements: High accuracy of 0.025mm, based on VDI/VDE 2634 part 3 standard and tested in a ISO 17025 accredited laboratory, ensures complete reliability and full traceability to international standards.
  • Shop floor accuracy: The MetraSCAN BLACK features a unique and patented dynamic referencing that compensates for surroundings instabilities.
  • Maximum versatility: Masters complex, shiny and highly detailed parts
  • No warm-up time: Operators can be up-and-running in minutes.
  • Touch probing capability:  When paired with the HandyPROBE, the MetraSCAN BLACK lets users harness the power of both 3D scanning and probing for a complete, streamlined inspection process.
  • Available in BLACK and BLACK|Elite: Customers can choose from two models based on their needs: speed, part complexity, accuracy, etc.

“Today’s manufacturers are facing tremendous challenges. They are under increased pressure to accelerate their time to market in order to remain competitive on the global scale. Product quality issues impact scrap rate, production ramp-up, production rate, and downtime, ultimately affecting production costs and overall profitability. Manufacturers need to rely on innovative 3D measurement technologies, like the MetraSCAN 3D, in order to refine their product development and quality control processes,” explained Guillaume Bull, Product Manager at Creaform.

“This new version of the MetraSCAN 3D takes dimensional measurement speed, accuracy and versatility to a whole new level. We believe manufacturers will appreciate its performance within their workflows.”

 

For other exclusive articles, visit www.equipment-news.com.

 

Check these articles out:

Raising Productivity with Plasma Systems

NUM Launches Form Compensation Option For NUMROTO Tool Grinding Software

Innovating Shopfloor Inspection: A Look At The Next Generation CMM

Hexagon’s Absolute Arm Now Features 3D Laser Scanner

Creaform To Showcase 3D Scanning Innovations For Metalworking Industry At EMO Hannover 2019

Hexagon Enhances Portfolio For CMM With Swift-Fix Chucks

6 Points To Better CMM Maintenance

 

WANT MORE INSIDER NEWS? SUBSCRIBE TO OUR DIGITAL MAGAZINE NOW!

FOLLOW US ON: LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter

 

The Importance Of A Calibrated And Traceable Artefact

The Importance of a Calibrated and Traceable Artefact

What is the most accurate way to check if a measuring tool works within its specifications? Guillaume Bull, product manager at Creaform, explains in this article.

When replacing old measuring equipment, it is common to validate that both the old device and the new device measure the same data and provide quality control (QC) with the same results. To do this, correlation tests are performed.

To facilitate and speed up the work, it is tempting to test a regularly manufactured part. After all, its specifications are well known. However, this choice of part may lead to a false diagnosis and an incorrect conclusion regarding the accuracy of the new measuring device.

Therefore, the most accurate way to check if a measuring tool works within its specifications is to use a calibrated artefact for which measurements have been previously validated and the data is traceable.

READ: Quality Assurance Brings New Confidence

Using a common artefact for the old device and the new device helps to minimize the variables that can influence the correlation tests. Among these variables, which will induce measurement differences, are the extraction methods that are different from one technology to another, the alignment methods that are rarely the same, software that does not process or calculate data in the same way, the setups that are generally different depending on the technologies, and the environment that, if not maintained exactly the same, will greatly influence the measurements.

Using a calibrated and traceable artefact enables operators to validate that both devices work within their specifications. As a result, if the measurements taken on this calibrated artefact give the right value, we will know for sure that the measuring devices work properly.

Scenario

A manufacturing company working in the automotive industry wants to replace its CMM with a 3D scanner. In order to validate the new equipment, a correlation test is performed between the two devices—the old and the new. When the two measurements are compared, there is a difference; the instruments do not correlate with each other. Why? Should we not get the same measurement on both instruments? What is causing this difference? Since we know that the old equipment has been accurate historically, should we conclude that the new equipment has an accuracy issue?

READ: Optimising Aerospace Parts Manufacturing

When testing for correlations between two types of equipment (i.e., comparing the measurements obtained on the same part with two instruments), there are many variables that can induce errors in the measurements. These variables include extraction and alignment methods, software calculation, setup, and environment.

Extraction Methods

We measure the same part, but we do not extract the same points with one measuring tool as we do with the other tool. The consequence is a difference in measurement due to the imperfection of the geometry of the part. Indeed, when we probe a surface plan by taking a point at the four corners, this method does not consider the surface defaults of the plan. Conversely, if we scan this plan, we measure the entire surface and get the flatness. Therefore, if the surface has a slight curve, the scanned plan might be misaligned compared to the probed plan. Thus, there will be a difference in measurement between the two methods.

Alignment Methods

We measure the same part, but we use two different methods of alignment. The consequence is a slight difference in the alignment method, which can lead, due to leverage, to large deviations at the other end of the part. Even if the same method of alignment is used, as mentioned above, a difference in the extraction method of the features used in the alignment can lead to a misalignment of the part. The positioning values are based on the alignment, which must not differ from one instrument to another, neither in the construction method, nor in the way it is measured.

Software Computation

We measure the same part, but we use different software that does not use the same algorithms for data processing. The consequence is a difference in the calculation of a feature from the software, even though the measured data is the same. The more complex the construction of the measurement is, the more likely it is to have deviations between calculations.

READ: A Guide to Machining Better Castings Through Optical Metrology

Setup

We measure the same part, but we do not have the same setup on both instruments. The consequence is different measurements of this same part. For example, a part of large dimensions is measured on a CMM. The marble on which the part is placed has an excellent flatness (30 microns). The same part is then measured with a 3D scanning system. But the surface on which the part is put has a different flatness (800 microns). As a result, the part twists and deforms slightly when placed on the second marble. Although the same part is measured, the two setups give different measurements because the support surfaces have different degrees of flatness.

Environment

We measure the same part but under different conditions. The consequence is a difference in the measurements. Indeed, if we measure an aluminium part of one meter on a CMM at an ambient temperature of 20 deg C and we measure the exact same part at 25 deg C, then the difference in temperature will result in a lengthening of the part by 115 microns at 25 deg C.

Common Artefact

It is crucial for quality control to minimize these different variables that could lead to correlation errors. The easiest way is to use, on both instruments, a common artefact for which measurements have been previously validated and the data is traceable.

Artefacts have the distinguishing characteristics of being calibrated and traceable. All features have been previously measured and verified in a laboratory, eliminating any doubt and uncertainty regarding measurements.

READ: Creaform Launches 3D Scanning Solution Suite for the Aerospace Industry

Conclusion

A value commonly obtained with a traditional measuring instrument is not a reference value that can be relied upon 100%. The reason for this is that equipment is not an artefact. There is always uncertainty associated with any measuring instrument. Therefore, the verification, validation, or qualification of a measuring instrument cannot be done with any part for which dimensions have not been previously validated.

The only way to certify that a measuring tool works within its specifications is to compare it with an artefact whose dimensions are calibrated in a known laboratory. Only an artefact makes it possible to correlate measurements between equipment because only an artefact can subtract all the variables that could interfere with the measurement. Thanks to an artefact, there is no doubt; the equipment measures accurately.

If two devices get the same measurement with an artefact, but do not correlate on a specific part, then the difference is not attributable to the instruments. Rather, it will result from measurement processes that will need to be checked and scrutinized further to obtain the desired measurement.

 

For other exclusive articles, visit www.equipment-news.com.

 

Check these articles out:

Tackling Shop Floor Inspection Challenges

ZEISS Completes GOM Acquisition

Hexagon Touch Probe Transforms Thickness Measurement on Machine Tools

Complete Measurement Solution for Consistent Quality Management

FARO Sees Bright Prospects in Automotive Manufacturing Industry

Speeding Up And Simplifying Solutions

Creaform Launches 3D Scanning Solution Suite for the Aerospace Industry

Ensuring That A Propeller Keeps A Heart Beating

Blum-Novotest To Highlight Measuring, Testing Technology at EMO 2019

Haimer: Microset Tool Presetters

Hexagon Intros Modular Metrology Fixtures to Online Shop

 

WANT MORE INSIDER NEWS? SUBSCRIBE TO OUR DIGITAL MAGAZINE NOW!

FOLLOW US ON: LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter

 

 

 

Optimising Aerospace Parts Manufacturing

Optimising Aerospace Parts Manufacturing

How does the aerospace industry manage to optimise its manufacturing processes and produce more parts of the highest quality in less time? Simon Côté, product manager at Creaform, explains.

The aerospace industry is known for manufacturing parts with critical dimensions and tight tolerances, all of which must undergo high-demanding inspections. Given the scale of the controls to be carried out on these parts, it is hardly surprising that quality people prefer to turn to coordinate measuring machines (CMMs). After all, this highly accurate measuring instrument has their full confidence.

However, directing all inspections to the CMM may cause other non-negligible problems: CMMs are hyper-loaded, generating bottlenecks during inspections, slowing down the manufacturing processes, and causing production and delivery delays.

Is it possible to unload the CMMs so that they are fully available for the final quality controls? How can we improve manufacturing processes to produce more parts faster and, above all, of better quality? And in the event of a quality issue occurring during production, is it possible to identify the root cause more quickly in order to minimise the delays that could impact schedules and production deliveries?

This article aims to explain how important players in the aerospace industry have managed to unload their CMMs and improve their manufacturing processes without ever neglecting the quality of parts with critical dimensions and tight tolerances, such as castings, gears, pump covers, stators, and bearing housings. Solutions developed by the aerospace industry can serve as a guide for other industries because, after all, the entire industrial sector aims to optimise its manufacturing processes and produce more parts of better quality in less time.

Challenges

Bottlenecks at the CMMs

Aerospace companies, and many other industries, require that manufactured parts be inspected with the CMM, because they have full confidence in the accuracy of its measurements. This exclusive trust, however, creates certain challenges.

Indeed, the CMM is a highly accurate metrology tool that is often used to inspect non-critical dimensions, leaving little availability for final inspections and important dimensions. Therefore, quality controls are delayed due to these bottlenecks at the CMMs. Moreover, the CMM is a measuring instrument that requires a specialised workforce to build and execute the programming. If the company does not have the human resources to do the inspection programs, the parts will accumulate as they wait to be inspected. Therefore, buying more CMMs will not solve the bottleneck issue; what is needed is the specialised manpower to operate them.

But that is not easy to find these days.

Quality problem detected at the end of the manufacturing process

Too often, manufacturing companies wait until the end of the manufacturing process to perform quality controls on manufactured parts. Moreover, not only critical dimensions are inspected at the CMM, but also all other dimensions, which lengthens the process, often resulting in delivery delays.

So, what happens if a quality problem is detected only at the end of the manufacturing process? The quality assurance team must then go through the whole process to investigate and find the root cause. This analysis may generate downtime and production delays, which will impact the part delivery and customer satisfaction.

Solution

Incorporate an alternative measurement method to detect quality problems faster

Rather than inspecting all dimensions at the CMM, which requires long programming time and involves qualified resources, the aerospace industry uses a faster and simpler alternative measurement method to inspect less critical dimensions. One example of this alternative method is a metrology-grade 3D scanner called the HandySCAN BLACK.

The HandySCAN BLACK 3D scanner excels due to its scan quality, accuracy, and measurement reliability. Certified to ISO 17025 and compliant with the German standard VDI/VDE 2634 Part 3, the accuracy of the HandySCAN BLACK is 25μm. Using a safety factor of 5x, for instance (i.e., five times more accurate than the smallest tolerance to be measured), the aerospace industry uses the HandySCAN BLACK for inspecting features with tolerances starting at 125μm (5x 25μm) or more.

With its 11 blue laser crosses, combined with new high-resolution cameras and custom optical components, the HandySCAN BLACK can perform up to 1,300,000 measurements per second in addition to generating an automatic and instant mesh. This means that, unlike a cloud file, the generated mesh is already lightened and processed, which reduces the need for data filtering and lessens the variability on data processing. Thus, the aerospace industry regains the same confidence it has in the CMM, because the data obtained with the HandySCAN BLACK are consistent and repeatable.

Moreover, since the HandySCAN BLACK is a portable device, it can be moved to any stage of the manufacturing process to perform an intermediate check without having to move parts. For example, it allows a pump to be inspected before machining to ensure that there is enough material and after machining to validate that the dimensions are accurate. The HandySCAN BLACK can also be used to check the dimensions of gears before and after their heat treatment. Only a portable metrology tool enables quality and production teams to perform these intermediate checks quickly and easily during the manufacturing process.

Benefits

Unload the CMMs for the final quality controls

CMMs will always be the preferred measuring instruments for final inspections. However, these highly accurate devices must be available to perform the final quality controls. In other words, they must not be loaded down by all kinds of intermediate controls during the manufacturing process or by various investigations while troubleshooting production issues.

This is precisely what the HandySCAN BLACK is doing for the aerospace industry: unloading the CMMs by diverting less critical inspections to an alternative measurement tool. An in-house survey quantified that 50 percent to 90 percent of the dimensions could be measured with the scanner, allowing the CMMs to be available and used to their full potential and full accuracy for critical dimensions with tighter tolerances.

Improve manufacturing process

The more the parts are inspected during their manufacturing process, the less tedious the final inspection will be. Indeed, if the parts—whether pumps, gears, or casting—have already been inspected before and after their machining and before and after their heat treatment, the risk of detecting unexpected problems is lessened.

The final inspection on the CMM, now widely available, will only serve to control the critical dimensions, as all other features will have already been validated during the manufacturing process. These intermediate checks, performed during production, not only accelerate the manufacturing process, but also improve the quality of parts while producing parts in higher quantity. The same in-house survey quantified that intermediate checks with the HandySCAN BLACK improved the manufacturing process by 30 percent, either by producing 30 percent more parts during the same production time or producing the same number of parts 30 percent more quickly.

Find the root cause in quality assurance

Finally, the HandySCAN BLACK helps identify the root cause of quality issues that arise during production. Since it is accurate, fast, and portable, it can find the source of problems faster in order to minimise delays that could impact schedules and production deliveries.

Conclusion

The aerospace industry values the CMM for quality controls because of its high accuracy and repeatability. However, aerospace companies agree that the performance of portable scanners, such as the HandySCAN BLACK, positions this alternative method as a must to optimise its manufacturing processes. This fast, portable, metrology-grade measurement tool is increasingly proving itself to be an indispensable tool for performing quality controls during the manufacturing process in order to unload the CMMs and detect problems more quickly.

 

For other exclusive articles, visit www.equipment-news.com.

 

Check these articles out:

TRUMPF Is Expanding The Scope Of 3D Printing

Looking For Greater Industrial Process Control

Managing Your Data Smartly

Renishaw Shares Outlook On Vietnam And Philippines

How to be a Better Production Planner in 2018

 

WANT MORE INSIDER NEWS? SUBSCRIBE TO OUR DIGITAL MAGAZINE NOW!

FOLLOW US ON: LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter

 

 

Creaform Launches 3D Scanning Solution Suite For The Aerospace Industry

Creaform Launches 3D Scanning Solution Suite for the Aerospace Industry

Creaform has released HandySCAN AEROPACK, a 3D scanning solution suite that addresses the specific challenges of aircraft quality control, such as assessing damage from hailstorms or aircraft incidents as well as flap and spoiler inspections. The HandySCAN AEROPACK can also be used for reverse engineering, maintenance and repair operations, and designing hard-to-acquire spare parts.

The HandySCAN AEROPACK solution includes: HandySCAN 3D, a metrology-grade, portable 3D scanner designed to acquire accurate, repeatable and reliable measurements—even in difficult environments, such as aircraft hangers or shop floors, and with both complex surfaces and parts of all sizes; SmartDENT 3D, an aircraft surface inspection software for assessing aircraft flaps, spoilers, fuselage, etc.; VXinspect, a dimensional inspection software module for quality control workflows and inspection reports; and VXmodel, a post-treatment software module to finalize and further process 3D scan data in any CAD solution.

Intuitive and easy to use by operators of any skill level, Creaform’s HandySCAN AEROPACK makes quality control and reverse engineering processes very efficient by reducing user impact on measurement results and accelerating generation time for final reports or CAD designs. Featuring unmatched performance, HandySCAN AEROPACK never compromises on diagnosis results or safety.

HandySCAN 3D is listed in the Airbus Technical Equipment Manual, which is referenced in its Structure Repair Manual. It is also part of Boeing’s Service Letter, meaning it can be used for recording physical attributes of aircraft dents of all Boeing commercial airplanes.

“The aerospace industry is facing increasing challenges due to manufacturers’ accelerated innovation, stricter regulatory standards, heightened concerns for passenger safety, mounting costs of grounded aircraft, and profitability targets,” explained Jérôme-Alexandre Lavoie, Product Manager at Creaform. “Because the HandySCAN AEROPACK package was developed with these challenges in mind, aircraft and MRO companies can tackle them head on with our solution suite.”

 

Check these articles out:

Creaform Expands European Coverage of CUBE-R

Creaform Moves Offices In Singapore

Creaform Adds Academia 50 3D Scanner To Its Educational Solution Suite

Creaform 3D Scanner Meets Boeing’s Quality Requirements

Creaform Names New Vice President Of Operations

 

WANT MORE INSIDER NEWS? SUBSCRIBE TO OUR DIGITAL MAGAZINE NOW!

FOLLOW US ON: LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter

 

 

Back To Top