Hexagon’s manufacturing intelligence division has launched what it claims is “the world’s first wireless laser scanner” designed specifically to work inside computer numerical controlled (CNC) machines.
The cutting-edge scanner allows for data to be efficiently, accurately and securely transmitted wirelessly, which improves production quality.
Hexagon’s new integrated wireless laser scanner, the m&h LS-R-4.8, does not require traditional touch probes and captures around 40,000 measurement points a second to provide information about the complete part, compared to the status quo of taking individual points with traditional touch probes.
Comparatively, measuring parts with manual devices between each step takes considerably longer than using an integrated laser scanner.
Now, measuring on the machine tool, whether for workpiece inspection, temperature, or tool control, workpieces can be controlled before, or even in between, machining. This results in improved production times and higher-quality products.
Manuel Müller, product marketing manager of Hexagon Manufacturing Intelligence, says: “The wireless laser scanner gives users the opportunity to evaluate product quality early in the game. It allows for deviations to be spotted early on, giving teams more time to make adjustments for better accuracy and results.”
The wireless feature of the m&h LS-R-4.8 means measurements of the workpieces can be done without having to move the part or installing external mobile measuring devices – both of which would be time consuming. Now, measurements can be obtained within seconds.”
In modern production, manufacturing often must stop until the results come in. The new wireless laser scanner removes this bottleneck by providing quick measurement on the machine tool, and the results are quickly sent to relevant areas of the production, such as quality engineers or production managers.
Working principally with machine tool companies, enabling them to deliver added value to their customers, Hexagon is providing a solution which can be used on multiple machines from different machine tool OEMs.
The laser is just one of a series of Hexagon measuring devices which turn a machine tool from any supplier into a full multi-sensor device. For example, separate probes can capture temperature and wall thickness, and now full surface data is captured with the laser.
Everything runs with just one receiver, and Manuel Müller explains that the wireless technology switches between them seamlessly.
Müller says: “We’re working with OEMs who will fit several sensors to their machines, which can simply be switched automatically for particular applications, depending on the program the user is running.
“Apart from providing better measurements on whole parts, the wireless laser scanner also has new capabilities. These include, creating colour maps to identify deviations, measuring freeform surfaces, and generating correction value allowing automatic part adjustments.
“The new package includes the wireless scanner, modular software, and Hexagon’s RC-R-100 multi-sensor receiver. The scanner is stored directly in the tool magazine inside the CNC machine and is inserted to the spindle automatically without any manual intervention.”