Nikon Metrology has introduced its APDIS gap and flush system, a fully automated way to measure gap and flush on a moving production line for finished ‘vehicles on wheels’. Users can achieve the task without the need for robots and the complexity in programming and safety that they inherently require.
Developed in conjunction with VRSI, the system offers: the ability to track and measure at conveyor speeds up to 140 mm/s; a large internal measurement volume; and three laser radars for all-round coverage. The system can measure a wide range of vehicles from small hatchbacks to large SUVs and trucks, and everything in between.
Users track the vehicle directly using linear sensors, meaning no conveyor interface is required. Position is determined prior to the vehicle entering the system by a set of 3D sensors that automatically account for variations in position on the conveyor. Once the vehicle is inside the system, the three laser radars move synchronously along linear rails, with the long range allowing measurement of gaps and flushes at specific programmed locations. By continuously moving back and forth along the rails as the vehicle passes through, the system acquires data all along the vehicle with up to 170 measurement locations possible.
The large stand-off of the APDIS laser radar, greater than 0.5 m, inherently provides vehicle and operator safety, while the use of linear rails means the system never approaches the vehicle. Light curtains and floor scanners provide further operator protection. The results are no damage and zero line stoppages.
Depending on factory condition, dynamic repeatability of better than 0.15 mm on flush and 0.3 mm on gaps delivers reliable, precise measurements for the user.
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