From the progressive assembly line to lean manufacturing principles, the automotive industry has always led the way in manufacturing technology. As the industry faces ever-reducing design-to-production times, automotive manufacturers and suppliers have embraced industrial metrology and 3D measurement as enablers of productivity. Recent trends include the move from off-line quality inspection to near-line or in-line measurement techniques, enabling higher sampling rates and faster inspection times. The most advanced automotive OEMs are working to automate inspection and integrate metrology data with product lifecycle management systems, statistical process control and supply chain management software. This actionable information helps inform decision making and find new ways to reduce ramp up times, minimise part rejection and improve the performance of cars, vans, trucks, lorries and other vehicles.
While coordinate measuring machine (CMM) inspection is a fixture of the powertrain and automotive component manufacturing process, portable measurement systems like 3D laser trackers and articulated measuring arms are taking accuracy and precision to all areas of vehicle plants. Automated in-line white light scanning systems enable entire car bodies to be measured in minutes, and virtual assembly techniques minimise rework and scrap in the closures department. With solutions for all these critical applications, Hexagon Manufacturing Intelligence works with almost every global player in the automotive industry, ensuring a smooth ride for manufacturers.