Benefits of laser scanning | Better insight enables quicker decision-making
Early detection of product quality issues and understanding the root cause of a problem are essential to rapid development of a new product. Digitising parts up-front and inspecting the virtual digital copies provides a high level of detailed knowledge by streamlining metrology operations and embedding them into an integrated, CAD-centred, design-to-manufacturing process.
The low-noise point cloud captured by a laser scanner allows a manufacturer to generate and access the required information. Nikon Metrology’s DMIS-based CAMIO software automatically filters the data and produces smooth, highly detailed meshes that are aligned with nominal CAD geometry using best-fit, feature-align or other techniques. A complete digital model comprising complex freeform surfaces and dimensional information is derived in minutes rather than hours, or hours rather than days.
Comprehensive reporting simplifies understanding the problems and facilitates collaboration between different departments, with tabular information and colour-coded deviation reports that are easy to interpret showing clearly the areas of concern and what is likely to have caused them. Underlying metrology data can be consulted by clicking on any location of interest.
Laser scanning allows detailed feature information to be obtained from the measured point clouds. With hundreds of points measured on holes, slots and studs, the features can be extracted more accurately compared to tactile probing, during which often only a few points are measured. Full GD&T analysis toolboxes are available to inspect location, cylindricity, parallelism and much more.
3D scanning reduces product development time, since once the digital model of a prototype is available, product verification, engineering analyses and other functions can take place concurrently. On-screen, virtual assembly of multi-part products speeds fit and function analyses and shortens the prototyping phase. Often, as complete parts are measured and more information is available, several iterations can be eliminated altogether from a product development cycle.
In the automotive industry, for example, Nikon Metrology XC65Dx-LS Cross Scanners with continuous wrist interfaces on horizontal-arm CMMs frequently underpin diagnostic measurement of sheet metal components and body-in-white (BIW) assemblies. Inspection is much faster and economical compared to touch probing, raising efficiency and reducing the time needed to diagnose problems. A vehicle’s entire sheet metal structure can be inspected to very close tolerances and virtually assembled, showing the interaction between the panels and allowing parts issues to be separated from process issues. Complete vehicles are also inspected, mainly for gap-and-flush spacing between car panels.
Read the full series of articles here.
- Benefits of laser scanning | Introduction to laser scanning
- Benefits of laser scanning | Better insight enables quicker decision making
- Benefits of laser scanning | Challenging surfaces scanned easily
- Benefits of laser scanning | Which laser scanner to choose?