3D Measurement as a Key to Manufacturing Small Batches

Image Credits: Alicona Imaging

At EMO show, Alicona presents its new cobot system, combining collaborative robots with high resolution optical 3D measuring sensors.

Alicona, supplier of high resolution optical 3D measurement systems, demonstrates the extension of its cobot range with the new Compact-Cobot. Whereas the Disk-Cobot and Tool-Cobot are application specific collaborative systems for the aerospace and the tooling industry, the new Compact-Cobot is a universal solution applicable in all industries to verify surface state and dimensional accuracy of also large components.

Alicona cobots combine collaborative robots and robust optical 3D measuring sensors, delivering traceable and repeatable measurements in high resolution. The measuring sensor is mounted onto a mobile robot platform and can be positioned as needed, even for the measurement of components in the machine. This is made possible by intuitive hand guided controls for the teach in of measurement series, automatic measurement evaluation, and a no-enclosures safety concept. As a result, cobots are ideal for verifying surface state and dimensional accuracy of work pieces in existing production environments. Cobots require no prior metrology knowledge and make handling, programming, and executing measurement series easy. Using connected automation software, any series of measurements can be defined at several positions by an administrator, which the operator then starts with the press of a button. Control and measurement are fully automated, and upon completion the worker receives a measurement report with OK or not OK details. Surface state and dimensional accuracy is automatically verified, a measurement report provides ok/not ok details.

In addition, an optional CAD-CAM connection allows the definition of measurements points, measurement directions etc. directly in the components´ corresponding CAD file, the “digital twin” of the respective work piece. A simulation provides a preview of the measurement process to be carried out, supporting a safe and secure measurement planning. The virtual operation of the Alicona measurement system comprises the entire handling, from the positioning of a component through to the determination of the measurement area in 3D.

The possibility to operate with a digital twin, as described here, allows manufacturers to integrate measurement technology already into the design phase. This is a significant contribution to the continuing digitalization in manufacturing and supports production in meeting increasing requests to manufacture small batches in highest precision.

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