The company GTR has built a business that is now firmly established as a leading composite part supplier to the demanding motorsport market.
With regards to ease of use and impressive accuracy, GTR preferred the quality of the point clouds created by the Edge ScanArm HD when scanning.
So the FARO Edge ScanArm has helped GTR to perform a range of non-contact 3D inspection routines and to accurately capture complex and free-form surface data as a detailed 3D point cloud.
When asked about ways to improve racing cars’ performance, Colin Chapman, the founder of the iconic Lotus brand replied. “Simplify, then add lightness”. If he was alive today the innovative designer would be fascinated to see the practical application of his tongue in cheek advice, with the widespread adoption of composites throughout the world of motorsport.
The extraordinary strength to weight ratio of composite materials has enabled F1 and other series to design cars that use semi-monocoque chassis, wings, spoilers, and other parts, made from composites materials that are significantly lighter and stronger. This results in cars that are both faster and safer.
Motorsport’s transition to the use of composites as a preferred material has been aided by a small number of highly specialised companies that have the required levels of composite design and production expertise.
One such concern is GTR, the company’s founders, John Biddlecombe and Simon Kingdon-Butcher, have built a business that is now firmly established as a leading composite part supplier to the demanding motorsport market. In addition GTR now supplies the aerospace, defence, marine and automotive markets.
As many composite parts are manufactured to demanding dimensional tolerances to ensure engineering reliability and best possible aerodynamic characteristics, they present a range of problems to the metrology industry. Not only must measuring equipment exhibit the required levels of accuracy and repeatability, the dynamic nature and the continuous evolution of designs within the F1 and the aerospace market demands speed of inspection and instant data capture
Troy Hull, GTR Quality Manager explained. “Our knowledge of the use of composite within motorsport is second to none. We manufacture everything from chassis, suspension, wing assemblies and bodywork to the smallest of fairings. Now, the vast experience we have gained in this most demanding of areas has enabled GTR to gain contracts for the manufacture of composite components, mouldings and assemblies for other challenging sectors such as the defence, aerospace, automotive and gas and oil industries.
“In addition to the quality of our work, a major factor in GTR’s success is our ability to react quickly to our customers’ needs. Having invested in the best available design systems including Catia V5 and Siemens NX CAD, we are able to rapidly take all projects from concept to fully designed products tooling and on to manufacture. Our first-class production facilities, such as our 3.0M diameter autoclave, one of the five we have on site, and state-of-the-art clean rooms also add to the speed of our service.
“In accordance with our policy of providing our customers with premium quality components as quickly as possible, we recently searched for a measuring technology that would both enhance our accuracy capability and further increase our inspection throughput speed.
“Having looked at several other alternatives, we purchased an Edge ScanArm HD from FARO. In addition to its ease of use and impressive accuracy, we preferred the quality of the point clouds created by the Edge ScanArm HD when scanning. Compared to other systems, the FARO product also performed much better when scanning across a range of materials with different colours and reflective properties.
“Following a short training course, four of our operators were able to quickly understand the Edge ScanArm’s basic operation. Then, as it is so easy to use, they gained further knowledge in everyday use. All are now extremely proficient in the Edge ScanArm’s use.
“We use the FARO Edge ScanArm HD to perform a range of non-contact 3D inspection routines and to accurately capture complex and free-form surface data as a detailed 3D point cloud. We scan a wide variety of components, including items such as 5 meter aerospace wings and F1 gearbox components, down to the smallest of parts. Through the use of our ScanArm we are able to undertake first article inspection and to precisely digitise previously difficult to inspect features such as flush and gap. In addition to being quick and accurate, as FARO laser scanning is so easy to perform, we are able to verifying the most awkward of features and to include their dimensions in 3D documentation and comprehensive, easy to understand inspection reports.
“We also use the FARO Edge ScanArm HD to check components’ complex geometries against design or CAD comparison to ensure that their surface forms remain within tolerance. Additionally, on the rare occasion that no CAD files or drawings exist, we sometimes need to reverse engineer parts. The ScanArm allows us to perform a rapid scanning routine and to digitise a part and create a fully surfaced accurate CAD model for future use.
“Our Edge ScanArm HD has lived-up to each of the promises made by FARO. It has further enhanced our inspection precision levels, speeded-up our measuring routines and vastly improved our component data capture capability.”
The FARO Edge ScanArm HD combines the flexibility and the functionalities of a FARO Edge measuring Arm with the high-definition Laser Line Probe HD creating a powerful contact/non-contact portable measurement system that is ideal for challenging application requirements. It delivers rapid point cloud collection with extreme resolution and high accuracy without the need for any special coatings or target placement – all in a compact and easy-to-use system.
The systems extra wide scan stripe and fast frame rate boosts productivity by increasing coverage and reducing scanning time. Intricate components can be captured in fine detail as a result of the 2,000 actual points per scanline and the new blue laser featuring noise reduction technology. Users are able to dramatically reduce required training time with the new crosshair feature and existing LED Rangefinder functionality, which provides real-time scanning feedback.
The Edge ScanArm HD is a most affordable, high performance contact/non-contact measurement system and is ideal for a wide range of situations, including product development, inspection, and quality control and offers capabilities such as point cloud comparison with CAD, rapid prototyping, reverse engineering, and 3D modelling of free-from surfaces.
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