3D measurement technology offers complete solutions for the competitive automotive industry, supporting geometric quality control end reverse engineering. These innovative metrology solutions streamline the entire process, from a new car concept until serial production.
Automotive Design and Styling
Styling reflects the personality of the driver. Design work to arrive at the rough vehicle shape occurs in a virtual environment, whereas clay models or rapid prototyping are proven methods to apply the finishing touch. 3D laser scanning offers the speed and precision to quickly verify physical models and reverse engineer any shape modifications. Scanning accurately captures freeform surfaces by acquiring thousands of measuring points per second without touching the prototype.
Pilot Plant Metrology
In the pilot plant, vehicle assembly is verified to avoid quality problems during series production of a new car type. In particular for sheet metal parts, the shape of the mating surfaces and the position of fixation points are key parameters to obtain an optimum fit. Ideally, pre-production geometry verification is performed by digitizing physical sheet metal and plastic body parts and virtually assembling vehicle bodies in software. 3D laser scanning technology, point cloud processing and virtual assembly reduce the number of physical evaluation prototypes and eliminates the need for costly specialized verification tooling.
Flush and Gap Inspection
Gap and flush inspection between assembled automotive doors and bodies is a critical factor in modeling a car’s aerodynamic performance and, in turn, determine its fuel efficiency. The handheld K-Scan MMDx laser scanner is an effective solution because it digitizes the complete spine in between hood and front fender, for example. A color-coded visual inspection reports graphically illustrates how flush & gap evolves along complete spine. The Cross scanner is the best-suited probe for automotive gap and flush inspection. With multiple lasers sweeping simultaneously, no reorientation of the probe is required to measure this complex and crucial geometry. A single scan path can be defined to follow the 3D curvature of the gap, and the cross scanner will automatically collect the data.
Die and Mould Applications
Tool Metal stamping, casting and plastic injection molding are popular production methods for molds and dies. Physical phenomena like part shrinkage and spring back make it difficult to precisely match the CAD geometry. The iterative manufacturing process can be monitored closely using laser scanners, which outperform tactile inspection in terms of measurement point count and inspection productivity. Color maps generated in inspection software visualize CAD deviation, providing powerful insight to avoid trial and error. Tool wear or accidental damage may call for repair rather than replacement. As original CAD may not outdated or missing, 3D scanning is a valid solution to reverse engineer the original tool.