Fusion for Energy (F4E), the European Union organization managing Europe’s contribution to ITER (an international nuclear fusion research and engineering megaproject), has just awarded the Franco-Italian consortium SIMIC – CNIM the contract to manufacture 70 radial plates for ITER. The contract, expected to run for 4 years and for a value in the range of 160 million EUR, is among the biggest industrial contributions of Europe’s share to the ITER toroidal field magnet system.
Amongst the mist of high-tech precision tools and machines is one of our very own FARO LaserTracker. The FARO Laser Tracker is an extremely accurate, portable coordinate measuring machine that enables you to build products, optimize processes, and deliver solutions by measuring quickly, simply and precisely.
Customers around the world trust the FARO Laser Tracker to solve their everyday measurement challenges as well as their most complex problems that simply weren’t previously possible. Companies are saving millions by completing large part inspection,alignment and machine calibration jobs faster, reducing downtime, eliminating costly scrap, and getting accurate, consistent, and reportable measurement data.
Okay, so the question is: what exactly is reverse engineering?
Reverse Engineering is the process of duplicating an existing product without the aid of drawings, documentation, or computer models.
Normally the product designer creates a drawing showing how an object is to be built and then the object is manufactured by following the design drawing.
However, with reverse engineering the steps are inverted and the object is ‘reverse engineered’ to discover its structure, function and operation. Therefore, duplication of the part is enabled by capturing physical dimensions, features and material properties.
The FARO ScanArm is a portable CMM ideally suited for reverse engineering applications. One key advantage of using the ScanArm to inspect is that soft, deformable, and complex shapes can be easily inspected without coming into contact with the part, greatly reducing the risk of damaging the item.
Interested in reading more about reverse engineering and success stories with its use? Download the full white paper here!
Affectionately known as “The Hammers” and now in their 9th year, the Construction Computing Awards showcase and reward the technology, tools and solutions for the effective design, construction, maintenance and modification of commercial buildings, residential and social housing and civil engineering projects of all sizes.
Among this years winners was the FARO Focus x330 3D Laser Scanner, which was able to prevail in the hardware product of the year category of the renowned Construction Computing award contest!
The Focus3D impressed due to its extremely powerful and accurate three-dimensional measurement method, which offers numerous advantages compared with conventional measurement systems. By means of three-dimensional scanning of surfaces, the laser scanner can record all spatial and surface geometry with millimetre accuracy with approximately one million measurement points per second. Much less time is spent in data recording, compared with other measurement methods. The resulting colour image of 3D measurement points shows an exact digital reproduction of existing conditions. Detailed 2D and 3D plans and complete 3D models can be created in a very short time with the precise data.
The compact size of the laser scanner was decisive for the award. It only measures 24 x 20 x 10 cm and weighs only 5kg. The Focus3D is thus highly mobile and usable at almost any location. In addition, it can be set up within a very short time.
MERIDA, Yucatán.- The Specialized Crime Scene Unit of the Ministry of Public Security is set to reach the height of the corporate elite research world with the acquisition of the Focus 3D Laser Scanner.
The director of the Specialized Crime Scene (UEEC) Unit, Marco Muñoz Herrera, explained that the FARO Focus 3D Laser Scanner can quickly capture the details of a crime or accident with high accuracy, without interfering with the scene whilst full details of the scene can be examined for further investigation.
Within a very short time after a crime, urgent steps must be taken to avoid deterioration of the scene and loss of evidence. The FARO Focus 3D Laser Scanner can mitigate the risk by quickly scanning a scene to record a detailed 3D point cloud overlaid with color images. This 3D forensic documentation captures the entire scene before the site is compromised. With this digital evidence, forensic scientists can examine the scene at a later date for lines of sight, a bullet trajectory or a blood spatter analysis.
HZ FbZ Züttlingen, a manufacturer of pressing tools and plastic injection, was founded in 1968 as a separate specialist department of the long-established August Läpple AG in Heilbronn, Germany.
The highest level of precision is demanded in the manufacture of tools produced by Züttlingen. The molds are milled out of a metal block on huge milling machines and then finished to an accuracy of hundredths of a millimetre. The tools must ultimately be adequate for the extreme precision requirements of the automotive industry.
A scanner is not much use on its own – with SCENE software from FARO, all the scan data acquired on the set can be processed and – with the hosting service – securely shared worldwide.
FARO is a manufacturer of portable 3D measurement technology, and has developed the SCENE software package specifically for the FARO Focus3D laser scanner. However the SCENE software is not restricted to the laser scanners from FARO, but can also be combined with other makes of laser scanner.
Using this software, the user can process the photo-realistic scan data from the laser scanner with the aid of automatic scan registration and positioning methods, and then carry out measurements and 3D visualisations and export point clouds. New tools take care of automatic scan positioning without having to rely on artificial targets such as checkerboard markers or spheres. The range of functions of the software can be extended at will with plug-ins from the FARO 3D App Center, for example for creating a video, for volume calculations and much more. At the same time, FARO has published the new version 1.6 of the scan data hosting service, SCENE WebShare Cloud: This enables scan projects to be viewed, shared and published online. And all with the highest security standard.
SCENE is compatible with Windows from version 7, 64-bit, in addition to which at least a 512 MB graphics card with OpenGL-2.0-interface is required for optimum performance. For stereoscopic display, FARO recommends an Nvidia Quadro card. SCENE uses the manufacturer-independent, binary data exchange format ASTM E57, and the tool also supports all popular formats.
How many laser scanners should be used for a high-quality scan model of which magnitude?
Oliver Bürkler: The crucial factor is always the degree of detail required for a scan. The more accurate a scan is to be, and the higher the resolution it is to have, the longer the scanner takes to record the data. We are talking about a maximum of 15 minutes for a very detailed scan outdoors, within a surrounding radius of 330 metres. The larger and more complex the object to be scanned – for example a large, angular building – the more scans will have to be carried out in order to record all the surfaces. It can thus be an advantage in terms of time to employ several devices in parallel, but it is not absolutely necessary. As far as SCENE is concerned, the software can in principle handle projects of unlimited size, and map them with no restrictions.
How does the scanner store the data?
Oliver Bürkler: The scanner stores the scan data automatically on a normal SD card. If a computer is equipped with SCENE software, data transfer is started as soon as the SD card is inserted, following a brief request for confirmation.
There are two methods available for automatic scan positioning without markers: “Top View”-based registration and “Cloud-to-Cloud” registration. Which of these is suitable for which situation?
Oliver Bürkler: “Cloud-to-Cloud” registration uses all the scan data for registration. In order to be able to operate reliably, this type of registration needs in principle some initial information about the rough position and alignment of the scan. When outdoors, SCENE uses the GPS information saved by the scanner for each scan. Without this information, for example when indoors, the user has to align the scans roughly by hand in advance. In contrast to “Top-View”-based registration, this method requires a little more time but is potentially more accurate.
Prior information about location and orientation are not necessary for “Top-View”-based registration. This method is particularly suitable when there are enough vertical structures – such as walls, for example – available in the scan data.
However, in the case of targetless methods the user has to ensure greater overlapping between the individual scanning locations. So you need more scan positions but you save yourself the effort associated with transporting, fitting and managing the targets.
In which application situations is the use of targets as essential as ever?
Oliver Bürkler: SCENE still supports spheres and checkerboards as targets. The user will normally still want to use targets if he/she wants to georeference the scans, for example, with tachymeter data. The type of most suitable targets depends on the individual case.
In which formats can data such as image files, CAD drawings or cards be integrated into the scan data?
Oliver Bürkler: The user can import files in .tiff, Geotiff, .jpg or .png formats into SCENE. The software then displays the file on a horizontal plane in 3D space. In the case of a Geotiff file, the position and scaling are extracted automatically from the metadata. With the other file formats, the user has to enter the position and the scale of the image, for example by means of a dialog box.
Does stereo 3D viewing work in real time in every situation?
Oliver Bürkler: The output of a stereoscopic 3D view can be easily defined in the 3D settings of SCENE. A stereoscopic view is always possible without any time delay then.
Is SCENE WebShare Cloud permanently integrated into the software or an optional feature?
Oliver Bürkler: It is an optional service from FARO, but from the technology perspective it is fully integrated in SCENE. Advantages of the Cloud service include the easy viewing of scan data in standard web browsers, as well as the provision of data in any size. Users do not need any special software for it. The scans are also displayed as panoramic images, so no knowledge of 3D programs is required. That makes it particularly easy in the case of complex projects to provide access to the data to everyone involved – all without any time delay. Even changes to the project become visible in real time. There is the choice of making the data public or of restricting access by means of username and password.
Is web-based collaboration on the model also possible?
Oliver Bürkler: Yes, that is also possible. Although we recommend that a web conference system such as GotoMeeting or WebEx be used for that purpose when several people are working at the same time. It makes cooperation more effective.
You also offer a free version of SCENE, called Scenect. For which target group is it intended?
Oliver Bürkler: Our intention with Scenect is to appeal to people who are not typical professional 3D scanner users, and to offer them an easy way into 3D scanning. All that is needed are inexpensive sensors such as the Asus Xtion or Microsoft Kinect. With Scenect, however, only one sensor can be used at a time.
Are there any imminent plans for a Mac or Linux version von SCENE?
Oliver Bürkler: There will be no versions of the software for other operating systems in the immediate future. On the other hand, SCENE WebShare Cloud is entirely independent of the operating system.
The F-35 program brings together the world’s most experienced aerospace industry leaders, including Lockheed Martin, Northrop Grumman, BAE Systems and Pratt and Whitney. The global team also includes more than 1,400 suppliers from 46 U.S. states and companies from 10 other countries around the world. This landmark project combines team expertise with sophisticated manufacturing, engineering and technological capabilities.
Among the mix is one of our own. A FARO Laser Tracker Vanatge, which is used in order to ensure precision during the construction and alignment of the F-35 wings. Misalignments can cause machine downtime and significantly decrease machine performance; however, portable CMM’s such as our FARO Laser trackers and FARO measuring arms can help to mitigate these issues.
If you would like to watch the full video, where you can catch a glimpse of our FARO Laser Tracker Vantage at work on the F-35 production line click here. Or for more details about our other FARO products then visit our website.
When it comes to quality assurance at the automotive supplier Mürdter, nothing is left to chance. Each product is checked with a FARO measuring arm in order to guarantee that only flawless components are distributed to their customers.
Mürdter specialise in metal and plastic processing and every day the development engineers at Mürdter ask themselves the same basic question: How can we make this component even lighter without sacrificing quality?
The FARO Edge ScanArm HD delivers rapid point cloud collection with extreme resolution and high accuracy – all in a compact, lightweight and easy-to-use system. The new functionalities enable users to seamlessly scan across diverse surface materials regardless of contrast, reflectivity or part complexity and without any special coatings or target placement.
The FARO Edge ScanArm HD is the most affordable, high performance contact/non-contact measurement system and is ideal for product development, inspection, and quality control and offers capabilities such as point cloud comparison with CAD, rapid prototyping, reverse engineering, and 3D modeling of free-from surfaces
Work has begun at the Jersey Museum in St Helier, Jersey to separate 70,000 Celtic coins which were discovered in 2012 by two metal detectorists Richard Miles and Reg Mead.
Valued at between £7million and £14million, the hoard is the world’s largest Celtic coin discovery. Thought to have been buried by a tribe fleeing from Julius Caesar’s army around 50BC, the collection of coins is now being worked on in public view at the Jersey Museum. For the past two years the heritage team have been carefully documenting the coin hoard in preparation for seperating the coins bit-by-bit.
But where does FARO come in?
Archaeologists have been using a FARO Edge ScanArm to scan the coins, in order to create 3D imagery and identify patterns in the coins from thousands of years ago! This means that the surface of the coin collection can be scanned before and during work for documentation purposes.
Due to the importance of this work, the Archaeologists at Jersey Museum must carefully pull the hoard apart one coin at a time. This makes the task extremely difficult and the FARO ScanArm will prove essential in aiding Jersey Heritage in the documentation of the 2,000 or so year old find.
For the full BBC article click here!