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Honeywell FM and T and Metrosage have combined their technical knowledge and experience to create a next-generation solution for automated measurement process planning.

Industry needs for improved and automated measurement planning processes and the requirement for certified-correct measurement programs with lower cost and short time-to-measure, prompted this team of experts to pool their talents and develop this solution.

Curtis Brown, principal engineer of Honeywell FM T and president of the board of the Dimensional Metrology Standards Consortium (DMSC), said: ‘Today the primary reoccurring cost of quality for dimensional metrology is associated with the generation of CMM part programs.

‘This process introduces a multitude of complexities, consumes our company’s processing time budget, propagates and contributes to design errors, and is encumbered by entrenched primitive programming techniques.

‘The industry has been seeking a major productivity breakthrough as promised by computer-aided design, but nobody has been able to produce this level of quality efficiency until now.’ At the DMSC’s Measurement Process Planning Committee meeting, the team demonstrated the ability to automatically generate a validated measurement plan from a toleranced CAD model and to translate the resulting plan into a specified part program format (DMIS).

The measurement plan included information such as CMM movements, data point locations, CMM and sensor selections and work piece placement, generating results initially in a generic format.

That format was then converted into an appropriate DME format.

All of this work, normally taking a metrologist hours or days, was completed within 10 minutes.

Dietmar May, president of Object Workshops and developer of the original specification for the DMIS Part 2 ANSI standard, said: ‘This system leverages decades of industry and government best practices and innovative research in measurement uncertainty.

‘It applies the complexities of GD and T to manufactured parts, creating robust, meaningful inspection programs.

‘The result is improved real-world inspection planning.

‘Integrated with the most advanced DMIS implementation, this system supplies quality DMIS export/import and introduces the potential for bare CAD model-to-CMM execution.

‘These capabilities will enable engineers to slash both time and costs traditionally associated with inspection planning, while affording overall improvements in total manufacturing quality for their company.’ Jon Baldwin, managing director of Metrosage, said: ‘We are excited about the level of interest in automation of the measurement planning process.

‘While our combined expertise in GD and T, metrology, modelling and simulation, and DMIS allowed us to quickly grasp the need for improvements to the process, the feedback from the attendees reinforced the urgent need to develop this next generation metrology tool.’ Additional partners are being sought to assist with product definition and accelerate time-to-market.

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