Flexible shop floor process control
Manufacturers around the world control their process using Equator™ gauging systems.
The cost of scrapping parts can often be reduced with the right process control in place. Whether implemented as an automated in-line or stand alone process control method, the Equator gauge's speed has enabled customers to move from sample inspection to 100% inspection of parts, significantly improving process capability.
With the Process Monitor function, operators are given visual bar graphs and charts of real time gauging data allowing processes to be corrected before scrap is produced.
CMMs are often located in temperature controlled rooms around the shop floor. With access at a premium and queues for measurement of parts, there can be delays in receiving inspection data. These delays may mean production has to be paused, or continued at risk before knowing whether the parts have been made to tolerance.
Through the Equator gauge's versatility and speed of operation, switching between parts is quick and short cycle times are possible. The system's thermal insensitivity and ease of use allows operators to save time by gauging parts directly on the shop floor.
Low cost of ownership
The purchase of an Equator gauge will see a rapid return on investment. Replacing manual measurement with an automated Equator gauging system can greatly increase throughput whilst reducing labour costs. Equator systems are a fraction of the cost of an equivalent custom gauging solution, including associated fixturing.
As Equator gauging systems are reprogrammable, there is no need to pay for expensive rework of custom gauges in order to gauge modified or new parts.
With increasing demand for fully automated manufacturing driven by the creation of 'smart factories', many Equator gauging applications have involved integration into automated cells.
The Equator EZ-IO kit can be supplied with an Equator system and is designed for automation integrators, to provide easily-configured communications between the system and a variety of equipment in automated work cells. Typically part loading on Equator gauging systems are performed by a robot or a shuttle system.
The Equator gauge's ability to measure parts quickly and accurately on the shop floor, rather than in a temperature controlled environment, has been a major benefit for many applications.
Its innovative technology is based on the traditional comparison of production parts to a reference master part. Re-mastering is as swift as measuring a production part and immediately compensates for any thermal effects.
In a design and manufacturing environment, improvements to parts are frequently made. The Equator gauge has proven to be the perfect solution as a single gauging system which can cope with the current range of parts and any future design changes.
Using the Renishaw MODUS software built into all Equator systems, it is simple to modify part programs to add or change features.
For applications where different parts are produced in batches every few weeks, the Equator system's ability to switch quickly from one part to another has proven indispensable.
Using Equator's Organiser™ software, operators can easily choose between different part programs using images, part names or bar codes. Fixturing can be changed quickly using repeatable fixtures and plates.