Improving large-scale dimensional measurements for manufacturing

In sectors such as the aerospace and automotive industries, large volume components are manufactured, modified and assembled to create complex products. For the machine tools, industrial robots and inspection systems employed, various factors limit the accuracy of some laser-based spatial positioning systems; cheaper multi-camera systems are available but offer less accuracy. Effective response to device data requires a digitally networked production line: such in-line operations for manufacturing and inspection would create more efficient factories of the future.

This project was targeted to address the industrial need for more accurate large volume coordinate measurements. A demonstration laser-based position measurement system can now exploit improved gas cell data and a new correction method for air refractive index variation. For multi-camera systems, calibration techniques have been made traceable to National Metrology Institute standards for greater accuracy. The project has also demonstrated that production efficiencies are achievable with in-line component inspection. To encourage industry uptake, results are being fed into guides and support for the updating of international standards.

The project followed on from the previous LUMINAR project.

The follow-on project to LaVA is DynaMITE.