The automotive world is one of the largest developing markets in the world. This industry embraces new technologies both in-line and off-line quality control of production line. Automotive parts are scanned with a variety of metrology tools, different laser sensor technologies and using CMM, all using robots that works 24/7. In this blog I illustrate an in-line defect detection task, where speed is an important issue but exact part measurement is not. Scanning with an area scanner or a line sensor means that the manufacturer understands the trade-off between measurement speed and accuracy, naturally covering large areas in fast speed has accuracy limitation and such technologies will provide data that will range between several microns to tens of microns. Accuracy also determine by the motion system limitation and not only by the sensor. Whenever we want to have very high definition scan, getting the best resolution, we may use a point sensor. This will usually occur when scanning small items with complex geometries.
In this case below the automotive engine manufacturer wanted an in-line defect inspection system, achieving fast results, but was ready to compromise on 10-15 micron accuracy only. Using an Optimet CL-100 line sensor is a good solution for this application. The sensor is able to provide distinction between engine holes which has defects to those which doesn’t. In this case the scanning data was 100 lines/second & 20 kHz speed rate. In another case a manufacturer in Taiwan used a point sensor attached to a periscope in order to inspect smaller and hidden holes which the standard line sensor can’t reach. By doing this he achieve accuracies of 1-6 microns only. However, this test is made off-line and requires more time. Again, Trade-off is the name of the game.
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