Robotic Inspection Cell with Seamless Inspection Software Launched

Total Controls, Inc recently showcased their VisionSoft3D Robotic Metrology Inspection System at the FabTech exhibition in Chicago. The affordable system has been developed for large production part assembly inspection and utilizes blue light optical sensor technology. Total Controls has more than 30 years’ experience in the automation and over 20 years’ experience of machine vision Integration.

Steven Baldwin, CEO Total Controls CEO states. “While other companies boast their success in non-contact large area scanning systems, few offer a system designed for the manufacturer with a limited budget. Small area scanning allows us to utilize lower cost sensors to achieve similar results to systems costing five times as much.”

The systems software was initially designed to meet Calsonic North America’s specification requiring capability of validating 3D coordinate hole measurements to within 100 microns for a new Nissan Steering Member. As the potential of the software was realized, further enhancements were added to provide a complete robotic inspection solution with seamless embedded robot path programming.

The software centers around the embedded 3D CAD environment which allows 3D models to be imported and displayed in the ‘Setup and Inspection’ screens. During setup, the operator utilizes the 3D model to select inspection points with a simple point and click routine and from the selected points VisionSoft3D automatically generates the robot path program and initializes a SQL setup record containing the coordinate location data along with tolerance specifications for each point. An Auto-Calibration routine helps to further reduce the manual setup of the robot and sensor.

Once an initial part is scanned into the system for inspection, the 3D environment is used to automatically rotate and zoom in/out on each feature inspection, allowing the user to view the inspection process as data is being collected and evaluated. A second smaller window captures the created point cloud data created by for each feature inspection. Inspection data with images are stored for traceability purposes and data can be accessed for analysis utilizing built-in CPK and XBar/R charting template.

“The system built-in flexibility allows the integration of various brand robots including Fanuc, ABB and Yaskawa, along with LMI, Cognex and Keyence sensors . Eventually we will design additional drivers and sensor interfaces and market the software to system integrators or end-users for “in-house” design and  builds” states Steven Baldwin .

Following the system showing at FabTech 2017, significant interest was received from corporations around the world. from a multitude of industries including Automotive, DOD, Heavy Equipment, Agriculture, HVAC, Off-Road, Water Sports, and Furniture. “The future of physical gaging with expensive GO/NO GO checking without data collection will diminish. Cost of tooling, labor, and the human error factor through this type of inspection can no longer be justified with aging technology” comments Baldwin.

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