Manufacturers of cast, deep-drawn or stamped parts are increasingly faced with the need for 100 percent inspection and documentation of dimensional accuracy and surface finish of the parts. Visual inspection parallel to the manufacturing process is still common practice in quality control when it comes to components with complex geometries and demanding defect characteristics. This is because automated component inspection often requires specific component handling, e. g. via robot. This makes inspection processes both slow and inefficient, as handling must be adapted depending on the component.  

Automated component testing without the need for specific component handling

Inspect-180° by Fraunhofer IPM inspects component surfaces on the conveyor belt, independent of the component type and with no need for specific handling. The parts to be inspected are positioned on a conveyor belt and fed one by one into an inspection tunnel. As the parts move through the system, they are captured by several cameras multiple times and from different perspectives. The entire surface of virtually any arbitrarily shaped component is captured sharply in any orientation and even components with a glossy surface or oil coating are recorded without shadows or reflections. The parts travel through the inspection tunnel within a few seconds. Real-time image processing is performed to map the 2D images captured to the existing CAD model. Deviation of the outer contour from the CAD model is calculated for every given perspective so that dimensional inaccuracies become instantly visible. The component’s sur­face texture is analyzed by means of AI-based anomaly detection, directly revealing defects such as scratches, stains or cracks. Defective parts can immediately be sorted out and even a downstream classification of defects is possible.

Sub-millimeter precision in the production line

Inspect-180° is an alternative to visual inspection for components up to 100 cm in diameter and with complex geometry, such as formed sheet metal parts. Dimensional accuracy and texture defects larger than 0.5 mm in size can be detected. A variety of parts can be inspected using one single system, without the need to adapt the hardware. Component testing is carried out at the speed of production, allowing direct intervention or feedback into the process.