Hear from Capture 3D, Inc. and GOM GmbH customers. Learn how advanced 3D measurement technology is improving product development, manufacturing and production processes.
After an extensive evaluation of competitive systems, we have implemented over a dozen ATOS Scanning systems at 9 of our manufacturing sites. We chose the ATOS systems based on Accuracy, Repeatability, Speed and the Support we received from Capture 3D. A conventional inspection of 500 items including 8 sections and setup would typically take 65 hours. We've been able to reduce that inspection time to under an hour and provide more detail in the process. Typical measurement of 'Trip Strips' has been reduced from 45 hours to 8 hours. Some of our key applications for ATOS have been 1st Article Inspection, In-Process Verifications, Core Inspections and Coating Evaluations.
Engineering Support Manager
Vald. Birn A/S uses two GOM Inspect Professional licenses for measurement and quality control of production samples from our foundry.
We have invested in GOM equipment and software as we believe that the provide time-savings compared to traditional CMM and give us the great advantage of having much more measurement data to analyze.
One of the advantages of using GOM equipment and software is the fact that the measurement operation can be carried out by more than one person. One person performs the scanning and another makes the measurement report. This means that we do not need metrologists for data collection, but only for analysis and report writing. Each production engineer can also analyze the part he is in charge of, without having to know how to operate the scanner.
Having more people involved means that we can use the equipment optimally, and maintain a more flexible process, which is not dependant on one person only. This is a clear advantage compared to traditional CMM processes, where this is typically the case. At Vald. Birn A/S the system will be used for continuous process control (SPC) and thus it is an important parameter that GOM develops fully automated solutions. Finally, GOM Inspect Pro will be used for measuring and monitoring our casting tools.
Vald. Birn A/S
Full-field measuring data from CT in conjunction with programmable inspection report creation in GOM Inspect Professional has reduced the tool release process from three or four weeks to three or four days. Inspection now involves far less effort, thanks to the simple color presentation of comparison data. Tool designers detect faults at a glance, without having to work their way through hundreds of measurements to find out.
Both software packages from GOM are ideal for CT data, as they offer mesh processing options, which are lacking in other software packages, as well as professional metrology 3D data evaluation.
In addition to six Professional licenses, free GOM Inspect software is installed on some 60 design engineering computers. It enables subsequent evaluations to be carried out during product development and tool designing stages. It also makes it easier for departments to exchange 3D measurement data and inspection reports. Likewise, these findings can easily be passed on to customers.
Learning videos and tutorials are the easiest and fastest way to get to know GOM Inspect. We pass training material on to both our employees and to customers who use CT services. Our long-term goal is for customers to obtain all measurement data from BJB and, subsequently, to perform the evaluation process themselves with GOM Inspect or GOM Inspect Professional.
X-ray Computed Tomography
BJB GmbH & Co. KG
Optical 3D coordinate measuring technology from GOM is used for quality assurance in design and tool-making departments, press shops, car body shops and close to production lines in nearly all BMW plants worldwide. For example the press shop at BMW's Dingolfing plant relies on optical metrology systems, including automation and standardization for inspection of sheet-metal components. 3D coordinate measuring technology is offering here, high time-saving potential as sensor, automation and inspection software all come from a single-source provider. Besides the automated measurement processes that have been continuously developed in close collaboration between BMW and GOM, another positive aspect of all the GOM optical metrology systems in use at BMW is high transparency.
AS the free GOM Inspect Software operates on hundreds of computers throughout the group and, in addition, resides on BMW’s internal network server – along with 28,000 completed metrology projects. This information can be accessed by all colleagues and departments involved, saving significant time in component evaluation discussions. This way 3D data is archived rather than storing the physical components. The collaborative relationship between BMW and the GOM automation team has proved highly successful – not only the Dingolfing workers value the professional support they receive with sensor, automation and data evaluation from a single source partner.
Capture 3D’s ATOS Triple Scan and TRITOP systems, have become an integral part of our engineering processes. After benchmarking other technologies, we chose Capture 3D because of the accuracy, speed, various measuring volumes, configuration versatility, and customer support. We are ahead of our calculated payback. One area of cost savings is from no longer having to outsource our inspections, which were costing us more than $30,000 per year. In addition to saving time and money, we have optimized and sped up our manufacturing processes. Due to the precise and high resolution data, we have greatly reduced rework, further enhanced our capabilities, and improved our machining and material compensation processes. ATOS and TRITOP systems have proven to be reliable and easy to operate. Capture 3D’s support team has been very responsive to our needs and requests.
In our benchmarking process, we looked at various technologies, such as laser and white light scanners, we found that the ATOS was the only system that could achieve the accuracy and data quality we required. Our primary applications are inspection and reverse engineering of tooling. It takes us 2 hours to measure and inspect electrodes to parabola tools with ATOS. Previously with our CMM, it took 50 hours to measure each electrode, including setup and programming time. Instead of receiving a 20-30 page CMM report, we now receive instant inspection color plot results that are more easily understood and reduces the amount of time it takes to make required changes. Once the electrode is burned into the tool, it takes us ½ an hour to scan and inspect. With the CMM it took us 20 hours. We also use the ATOS system for reverse engineering of tools that are either broken, worn, and/or have no CAD data. Because of the accuracy of the scanner, we are able to mill directly from the scan data eliminating the need to create a CAD model. We are continuously impressed with the reliability of the ATOS system and since its acquisition in 2005 it has never failed us.
Through our evaluations, we determined that the ATOS system provides better accuracies than Laser Scanners and with the organic shapes of Turbine Blades, CMM's do not provide the required detail. Since our initial acquisition in 1998, we have installed six systems at five locations and have been very impressed with the continual software and hardware updates. GOM is obviously making substantial investments to keep ahead of their competition.
Director of Design Engineering
Chromalloy Gas Turbine
We have been using the ATOS system since 2004 and have been extremely impressed with the reliability of the equipment. Often times we have run two shifts, driving the system 20 hours a day with great reliability. Our main applications are Product Definition and Quality Inspection of Industrial Gas Turbine Components. We initially felt that we wouldn't be able to justify the cost of an ATOS system, but after seeing a 30% time savings in our Product Definition applications we acquired a second system after just 9 months.
Vice President of Engineering
ETS Power Group
We were tasked by management with an aggressive goal to transform our Design to Tool Building process to all Digital. Our research lead us to choose ATOS as the system most likely to provide the success we were looking for in such a short period of time. We very quickly achieved our goals and reduced the process from 3 - 5 days down to a 1.5 hour process. This decision created a significant savings in time and money while shortening our product time to market.
Senior Model Maker
Since our initial installation in 1998, Ford Motor Company has been a long time satisfied customer of Capture 3D. Through extensive benchmarking analysis, we chose the ATOS and TRITOP systems for their speed, accuracy, and user-friendly work flow processes. These solutions have improved our concept through manufacturing processes by reducing both time, costs, and improving product quality. We've implemented Capture 3D solutions to digitize clay models, directly mill from scan data, inspect sheet metal, machined parts and tooling, and perform root cause and trend analysis. At times, our Capture 3D systems have run 3 shifts per day, 6 days a week. We've received outstanding support from the Capture 3D team and over the last 11 years have utilized their systems upgrade program to capitalize on solution enhancements in an effective cost of ownership manner.
Manager Design Measurement
We use GOM Inspect in two departments in our enterprise – in development inspection and production. In development inspection, GOM Inspect is applied for drawing up initial sample inspection reports after tool production and tool modification. The results are used in our molding department to place subsequent production orders. Besides, with GOM Inspect, we can recognize deviations to molds or existing parts, which do not have a 3D model. In addition, we can produce measurement statistics, file measurement results and produce presentation documents. In our production, GOM Inspect is used to inspect single components for dimensional accuracy (mechanical parameter) through a fast surface comparison at the beginning of the running production.
We have decided to use the GOM Inspect software, as the ATOS Scanner and the related evaluation software ATOS Professional and GOM Inspect Professional facilitate a variety of measuring possibilities and evaluations that are not possible with traditional measurement methods at our plant.
GOM Inspect provides great benefits, including an optimization of workflows (construction of components and assemblies in 3D, construction of injection molds in 3D, measurement of parts based on this data). Likewise, we benefit from improved documentation facilities and an easy disclosure of measurement data. Both aspects provide a better basis for discussion and lead to an enhanced comprehensibility of measurement results. The possibility of subsequently and easily changing metrics and test sequences and continuing with further analyses is an additional advantage. For our company in particular, it is very helpful that changes in documentations following changes in test sequences are possible and easily manageable. This allows for a comparison of Autodesk Moldflow simulations with the finished parts. Additionally, the fast detection of rough deviations through optical illustration (surface comparison) results in huge time savings for us.
In summary, GOM Inspect Software highly supports discussions within different departments in our company (e. g. development inspection and production or injection molding).
Group Manager Development and Approbation Inspection
Kraus & Naimer
We invited various scanning companies to benchmark their technologies. Based on the results we decided to move forward with Capture 3D. The ATOS system process had a smooth flow, was easy to use with accurate and repeatable results. When comparing an ATOS with a Laser Scanner mounted on a CMM, we have found the ATOS system to have far more repeatable results. We use the ATOS system primarily for first article inspection to aide our tool tuning process. Each tool iteration requires about $25K in expense. Using our CMM we would typically have 3-4 iterations, and now with the ATOS system we have just one. One project alone justified the cost of the ATOS. Through our experiences we have come to be more confident in our ATOS measurement then those from the CMM. As they say, "a picture is worth 1,000 words," and with the ATOS software we can instantly generate easy to read inspection color maps that allow us to quickly analyze our parts.
Sr. CMM Technician
The group-wide rollout of the GOM Inspect software is due to start soon at the pilot plants in Oelde and Bünde, before it will be implemented at Miele´s locations in GermanyIn the run-up to the rollout, the software has already been scripted by the IT department. It will be made available to individual PCs via the company's central server. During installation, staff at Miele will be trained in the use of the software.
One reason for deploying the GOM Inspect software throughout the corporate group is the possibility to centralize software management. This ensures that the latest software version is always installed on all PCs, guaranteeing a smooth exchange of data between different locations. All employees can view and edit the evaluations whenever they need to. Another reason is the software's universal applicability.
One typical area of application for GOM Inspect software is technical coordination. These coordination meetings are attended by quality managers, designers, buyers and manufacturers (internal or external). Parts or tools are initially assessed on the basis of false color display resulting from a comparison at CAD data as a image says more than 1,000 figures. Other evaluation which are consulted at these meetings, include cross-sections, material thicknesses and trend analyses.
Miele & Cie. KG
Motorola utilized the extensive Six Sigma DMAIC process to benchmark tactile measurement systems, laser scanners and numerous white light scanners. We used accuracy as a main criteria to narrow down the playing field and then focused on speed and ease of use. We found that with Capture 3D's Motion Control system we were able to analyze our parts quicker, and it requires very little training and no special skill sets. With the ATOS Motion Control integration it allows us to easily program variable part sizes for an automated routine. We are currently on target to meet a 13-14 month payback compared to our old processes. In addition we are able to get product to market quicker and help our customers and vendors solve their build and fit issues.
We have spent significant time testing artifacts and comparing with traditional methods to prove out the entire process. We have certified the ATOS system for our inspection applications and have encouraged our suppliers to use them to improve their processes. Areas of success for Pratt & Whitney have included Compressors, Tooling, Cases, Turbine Components, IGT Components, Internals & Externals and Nozzles. With the Automation that Capture 3D has integrated, we have increased throughput significantly for production applications.
Advanced Manufacturing Metrology
Pratt & Whitney
The primary goal in obtaining an optical sensor was for speeding up our problem resolution time. This adequately did the job while other projects organically spawned off such as pre-DV (design validation) qualification, resulting in higher first time throughput of development testing and pre-PPAP (production parts approval process) qualification which serves as a great dimensional check and with that, the free automatic snapshot of the part at launch. After testing several metrology technologies we narrowed down our selection to two optical 3D scanners. We further benchmarked both systems and chose Capture 3D’s ATOS solution because of the accuracy, faster workflow process, higher data quality, and ease of use. The data quality from the other system was inferior and the paid-for interrogation analysis package simply didn’t stack up to the free version of GOM Inspect. ATOS has become our primary measurement tool and with it we have increased efficiencies by optimizing our dimensional analysis methods. The free GOM Inspect software has proven to be a valuable asset empowering each product group to perform thorough inspections and quickly solve problems at their workstations, thus freeing up our ATOS system to continually measure parts. We are currently in the process of institutionalizing GOM Inspect throughout the organization. The Capture 3D support team and the GOM online tutorials have been very helpful and we are able to quickly train new users.
In 2007 we purchased the Capture 3D ATOS I SO system, and since then it has virtually paid for itself and improved several aspects of our business. Due to the ease of use, we have trained many employees to utilize the equipment. Therefore, we have eliminated our previous CMM scheduling and employee specialization requirements for root cause analysis and dimensional inspection. As a result, the time to obtain data reduced from 4 to 6 weeks to less than 2 to 3 days.
It has also helped us reduce our time to PPAP approval for many of our components. Prior to implementing the ATOS system into our business, there was a lot of time wasted in identifying tooling discrepancies and validating the corrections prior to PPAP. With the ATOS system, however, we are able to quickly highlight problems in our tools and correct them accordingly. In fact, the number in times we needed to measure a given part prior to PPAP decreased from 4 times to 2 times because of the speed and accuracy with which we are able to analyze and fix our tools.
Another area in which the ATOS system has benefitted our business is in the improvement of our designs and processes. We not only use it to dimensionally validate our parts, but we have also used it to validate our Mold Flow predictions. The system has allowed us the ability to more accurately highlight differences between our predictions and our actual parts. As a result, our predictions have grown more accurate, allowing us to better execute any future products.
Finally, any time there have been questions or concerns with our ATOS system, Capture 3D's support network has been able to help. Whether we needed clarification on how to perform a certain function or help with a software issue, their support was able to provide solutions.
All in all, I would recommend the ATOS system to any business looking to improve the time it takes to verify their parts and their designs.
APQP Quality Engineer
Samvardhana Motherson Relectec Company