Programmable Electric Actuators Perform High Speed High Accuracy Measurements

Programmable electric actuators have been increasingly favored as airless substitutes for LVDT’s and ball screws. Many manufacturers have adopted programmable electric actuators for their high speed, high precision, and flexible programming. SMAC electric actuators have programmable velocity, position and force, and the ability to give feedback on the work. To measure height SMAC uses a patented Soft-Land routine which allows the actuator rod to land on the surface of a component with a low programmed force providing extremely accurate sensing of product location or dimensions. This is particularly useful for handling delicate or high value components.

Programmable electric actuators can also be used for thread checking, dimensional inspection, and 100% inspection tasks where quality is key. The SMAC actuator performs a fast approach, performs the Soft-Land routine on the part feature and checks experienced forces are within given tolerances (up to +/- 10 – 15 grams force resolution). Position and force are checked during the entire motion profile.

Growing quality requirements demand a 100% quality control in production. SMAC’s unique automated contact measurement solution were developed to solve the problems with existing inspection systems using LVDT, Camera, Laser, and manual gauging techniques. It successfully automates inspection procedures and performs in the shop-floor environment where conventional solutions have failed.

SMAC measurement system can be programmed with variable force/displacement that duplicates human hands and fingers with data feedback. Quick measurement of force or diameters/depths and locations to submicron accuracy for Quality Assurance where metrology is key. SMAC inline quality control solutions are used for automotive parts and industrial components; thread check and quality measurements for casting parts, airbag components, automotive switches, latch assemblies, and numerous others.

One such example is the 100% measurement of automotive air bag components which require a total of nine independent part checks, two externally and seven internal checks internally. The cycle time from start to finish for each component is less than 2.5 seconds runnning 24/7 the system provides 100% data feedback and verification of each individual part.

The primary checks are: groove location depth and diameter with addition measurement checks being carried out for flatness of face, bore depth and diameter, bore surface finish, debris presence and flange thickness.

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