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Increasing Your Customer Base Using Laser Tracker Technology and Large-Volume Metrology Software

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vantage-s-roll-press-calibration BuildIT

ASNA overcomes shop-floor challenges

In a TED Talk, Geordie Rose, co-creator of the D-WAVE quantum computer, said, “Humans use tools to do things. If you give humans a new kind of tool, they can do things they couldn’t otherwise do—imagine the possibilities.”

Rose was, of course, speaking of quantum computers, but that sentiment is just as relevant in manufacturing. When Alignment Services of North America (ASNA) began using laser trackers and 3D modeling software, the company and its customers began to discover how much more they could do with a 3D survey compared to precision optics. Read More

Using a remote with BuildIT

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BuildIT Remote Laser Tracker

Laser trackers are often used to measure very large parts, and so users are usually inconveniently far from the measurement buttons while manipulating the probe. This leaves you with three options to measure a large part:

  1. Have someone at the computer while you manipulate the probe: The inspection of a large part can often be a team effort, and when you have the luxury of being two, your colleague can manage triggering the correct buttons.
  2. Use the “Auto-start when stable” feature, combined with the “Auto-accept” feature: The measure button can be automatically triggered when BuildIT detects that the probe is resting against a stable object. This option can be accessed by clicking the Setting button in the upper left corner of the Inspect Control Window:Click the checkboxes to turn on the feature. In the example below, it will start measuring when the probe hasn’t moved more than 0.25 mm for 3 seconds. After taking its measurement, it will wait until you have moved at least 127 mm from your last measurement before auto-starting when stable.Similarly, you can also have the Accept button automatically trigger a certain length of time after taking a measurement.
  3. Use a remote: This is my preferred way of measuring, as it gives you full control of the buttons with no ambiguity. You simply need to assign the buttons on the remote to the desired hotkeys: F9 to measure, F10 to accept, F11 to discard last, F12 to send your beam to the bird nest.

It’s important to choose a remote that will work over long distances, especially when inspecting large parts. One that is usually used in the industry is the SMK-Link’s RemotePoint Jade, which works at a range of up to 150 feet: Read More

5 Laser Tracker Warm-up Tips for Ideal Measurement Conditions

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BuildIT Laser Tracker Measurement Angles

An Important Factor in Precise Measurements: Laser Tracker Warm-up Time

In aerospace, one of the most extensively used measurement instruments is the laser tracker. Laser trackers are very precise devices composed of extremely complex subcomponents such as interferometers and angular encoders. They are basically robots capable of following reflective targets. And, as with all robots, they are subject to specific sensitivities. One of the most crucial of these is their sensitivity to thermal effects. Read More

TRENDS IN AEROSPACE ASSEMBLY: MEASUREMENT ASSISTED ASSEMBLY- MEASUREMENT DEVICES PROVIDING GUIDANCE FOR ASSEMBLY

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Final Assembly of Airbus 400M

In my last blog post, I talked about measurement assisted assembly (MAA). Measurement Assisted Assembly is a key operation for the reduction of time in aerospace assembly, which can account for as much as 40% of aircraft manufacturing costs. In this post I will present an interesting example of MAA: Assembly of aircraft through the guidance of measurement devices. Read More

Use your metrology software with your iPod, iPad or iPhone without the internet – BuildIT Tips & Tricks

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Using Build!IT with iTeleport on the iPhone

Imagine: You’re alone on the job using your laser tracker to measure a large part, such as an airplane fuselage or a machinery roll in a paper mill. Your computer is set up close to the laser tracker and power supply. You climb the scaffolding to access the feature you want to measure and start measuring using your 4-button remote. After a few thousand samples, something happens. Maybe you lift the SMR by accident because there is little bump on the surface.  Maybe you want to verify the settings, or you would like to view the previewed cylinder.  Whatever the case may be, it means that you must climb back down and return to your laptop in order to accomplish the task.  This is a common enough scenario.  Wouldn’t it be better to be able to manipulate your metrology software without leaving your part? Here at BuildIT, we recommend iTeleport to remote access your metrology software securely. Read More

Spotlight on: The FARO Vantage

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Today we will be taking a look at FARO’s newest addition to their laser tracker lineup: The FARO Vantage.  Its features include Compact Size, Water and Dust Resistance, Longer Range, SmartFind, MultiView Cameras, TruADM, TriMap Encoders and Integrated WLAN.

As you can see from the photo album above, we had the pleasure of testing this device out first hand, both while it was on display at our booth at the CMSC this past July and when it came for testing at our office for interface capability in Build!IT 3.2.0 SP2.  The features of particular interest to us are SmartFind and MultiView Cameras.  SmartFind (known in our software as Active Gestures) allows the user to make a simple back-and-forth movement with the SMR which signals to the tracker to recapture the beam.  The MultiView Cameras feature (known in our software as the Camera Drive) displays a live video feed of what the tracker’s camera sees, and allows the user to direct the beam within the view with a simple click of the mouse.  These features are incredibly useful in reducing the time it takes to recapture the beam, giving you control options whether you are working at the computer, or you are at the part with the SMR.  Check out our video below for some footage demonstrating these two features, and their implementation in Build!IT 3.2.0 SP2. Read More

BAE Standardizes on Build!IT to Manufacture the Joint Strike Fighter

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BAE Aft Port Side Fuselage

Joint Strike Fighter (JSF) is an international program to build a common fighter aircraft that meets the combined needs of the US Air Force, Navy and Marine Corps, as well as the UK’s Royal Air Force and Royal Navy. Lockheed Martin leads the charge in cooperation with BAE SYSTEMS and Northrop Grumman to engineer and deliver an F-35 aircraft that meets the unique requirements of all partners. Each manufacturer has their own role in the development of the aircraft. BAE SYSTEMS Samlesbury is responsible for the design and assembly of the aft fuselage and tails of the aircraft. Read More