The Importance of 3D Sensors In Product Inspection

Implementing 3D sensing is rapidly becoming an essential enabler to ensure quality and process control in many applications in factory automation –– delivering results that are impractical with traditional 2D approaches.

Smart 3D inspection allows you to measure critical quality control features and make informed pass/fail decisions. It is applied both in-process and at final inspection, for individual component manufacturing and for sub-assembled products…

3D Smart Sensors are Key in Parts Inspection

A Wide Array of Applications

There are many applications for 3D sensors in assembly inspection. Verifying geometry, position and orientation of components in three dimensions is a task easily implemented with 3D sensors, even for complex geometry parts such as engine cylinders. It also allows verification of the position of parts that have little or no contrast with the background surface.

Inspection of small assembled products, such as electronics, is notoriously difficult for traditional dimensional inspection techniques. Irregular curves, bevels, and surface reflectivity can make it very challenging to automate precision measurement and quality control. 3D sensing meets this challenge, with high scan rates to satisfy the demands of 100% inspection.

Small Electronics Parts

For large assemblies, such as automotive bodies, 3D sensors monitor, control and report geometric data at critical points. A finished car body may have more than 100 critical measurement points. Sub assemblies require dimensional measurement and control at many points, both in process and as finished. 3D sensors also automate measurement of the critical gap and flush between panels, with sensors mounted on robots for flexible inspection of different models, eliminating the labour cost of error prone manual methods.

The smartest of today’s 3D sensors also generate 2D surface images, synchronized with 3D point clouds, suitable for surface inspection or reading of barcodes for verification and tracking.

A Network of Smart Sensors

In the “smart” automated factory, networked smart 3D sensors connect with factory infrastructure to report results, web browsers for diagnostics and monitoring, the Internet for upgrades, and even with other sensors to exchange or combine data.

Multi-Sensor Network

Applying 3D sensors in part manufacturing and finished product inspection in this way enables measurement, decision-making and control for both large and small products.