In-line Contour Inspection at High Speeds


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The Opticline contour automatic production metrology system is designed to enable quick inspection of shaft contours with high accuracy and reliability. Available from Hommel-Etamic, the Opticline CA614 non-contact shaft measuring system is said to provide fast, economical and robust submicron measurement of virtually all contour features on complex shafts as large as 600 mm in length and 140 mm in diameter.
The shaft measuring system is suited for automotive and aerospace applications, including carrier shafts in aircraft engines, drive parts in helicopters and various rotor parts. In these instances, the system inspects length, geometry (angles, radii and more), form (roundness, runout), and diameter.
Its stroke is driven by a motorized tailstock, freely positionable over the full holding range to enable precise workpiece loading and holding. The system is said to be easy to use and program, and offers the ability to measure different part variations with little or no change-over. Depending on the measurements required, standard measuring functions can be quickly combined into one optimized measuring run. Examples of combined dynamic functions include size roundness, runout, minimum size, maximum size and more. These functions can be computed based on a single contour record. The system monitors itself for negative ambient influences, providing automatic active temperature compensation before every measuring run.
Contour Automatic hardware and software are designed to maximize reliability over long periods of time. The optical sensor operates in an environment that protects it from part wear and collision, while offering short cycle times, sub-micron accuracy and measurement results within a few seconds.
Once a new part is loaded into the system, a scan commits the part to memory. The user can then intuitively create new measuring programs within minutes based on the preliminary scan, the company says. The creation of part measuring programs, data display and further processing of the measurement results takes place through a graphical user interface (GUI). The GUI can also customize inspection reports.

In operation, the part is loaded into position then automatically scanned opto-electronically utilizing the silhouette principle. The workpiece contour can be evaluated quickly and precisely utilizing the high resolution associated with each measured datum (statically or dynamically), the company says. A flexible, pneumatic driving fixture is said to provide defined workpiece driving and easy workpiece handling.