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Integrated Smart 3D Scanning Drives 100% Inline EV Battery Inspection

+Vantage Corporation was established in 2003 to provide measurement and inspection capabilities to the automotive industry. Since then the company has expanded exponentially into assembly, automation, and intelligent manufacturing systems. The industries the company serves are varied from automotive and aerospace to biotech and pharmaceutical. The company’s projects range in size and scaling, from turnkey integrated production systems to stand alone, semi automatic and manual stations for a variety of processes and inspections. +Vantage integrates a wide variety of technologies, making them a one-stop-solution provider in automated assembly, inspection, and test systems.

The Application

In this application, the +Vantage 3D system provides no fail forward 100% inline inspection with robust tooling changeover, high accuracy metrology measurement, and full surface non-contact analysis.

The Challenge

+Vantage worked in tandem with a tier 1 automotive supplier, manufacturing battery components and other parts for leading electric vehicle OEMs. Their challenges with EVs were immediately apparent. The battery components are large, often taking up the entire undercarriage of a modern electric vehicle. This led to warpage during manufacturing, putting components out of geometric tolerance. For drilling and reinforcement, each complete battery cell has hundreds of individual holes, all of which require positioning precision and parallelism from top to bottom. In this situation, traditional contact gauging methods—both by hand and more automated solutions—were neither feasible nor reliable on the scale the client required.

The Solution

+Vantage integrated an LMI laser line profiler and other sensor types into their custom engineered automated inspection cell. Through developing customized tooling to support a number of LMI sensors, the entire battery part can be inspected for hundreds of measurement points verifying the condition and quality of the component in a short amount of time. By mapping the part in 3D, changes in the measurement program and part condition can be easily detected and verified.

Gocator smart laser sccanner with onboard software“Key measurements such as width, height, offset, and continuity are only possible thanks to the 3D capabilities of the Gocator system. The sensor can then feed statistical data into your statistical process control (SPC) tool of choice. This allows for real-time tracking of your production process, identifying trends through 100% inspection, and allowing for critical fixes and maintenance before it’s too late.” stated Brandon White, Director of Sales and Business Development, +Vantage Corporation.

The LMI Gocator smart sensor offers:

• Fast profiling speeds up to 10 kHz
• Generates high-resolution 3D shape data (width, height, volume, offset)
• High repeatability for reliable measurement over time
• Factory pre-calibrated, ready to measure out-of-the-box
• Simple integration with existing inline and robotic systems
• Easy web based interface for maximum ease of use and operations efficiency
• Onboard software with built in measurement tools including Surface Track Tool

The Result

The customer was able to inspect 100% of their production volume verifying dimensional condition, assembly condition, and presence and absence of key features.

Next Steps

The integrated nature of a +Vantage system built with LMI vision technology makes it highly flexible and easy to retool for new manufacturing processes. +Vantage’s design philosophy of long-term reliability also means minimal downtime to fix and maintain inspection cells.

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