PowerINSPECT selected for F1 inspection

Jo Bauer of the FIA uses PowerINSPECT to inspect every car before each race
A simplified model of the car is stored in PowerINSPECT

A combination of Krypton’s Rodym optical co-ordinate measuring system and PowerINSPECT software has been selected by the governing body of Formula One racing for all pre- and post-race inspection of Grand Prix cars.  Technical staff from the Fédération Internationale de l’Automobile (FIA) will use this combination to check that the cars meet both safety and technical specifications. 

To keep motor racing as safe as possible for both drivers and spectators, the FIA enforces strictly a wide range of safety regulations.  At the same time, all participants must adhere to a large number of technical requirements to ensure that no team gains an unfair advantage over other competitors. 

These demands are summarised in a simplified model of a racing car that defines minimum and maximum dimensions in all critical areas of the design.  This model, which is stored in the PowerINSPECT software, is divided into areas where bodywork material must be present and areas where no material is allowed.

After all the qualifying sessions, the leading cars are inspected with the Krypton system.  Each car is fitted onto a locating jig below two cameras mounted into the ceiling above the inspection area.  The car is then inspected with a hand-held probe that can reach into all the regulated areas of the car.  The location of the point of contact is measured by means of optical triangulation to calculate the position of the probe tip to within 0.1 mm.  

Each measurement is then fed into the PowerINSPECT software to determine whether the point is inside or outside the legal limits.  The results are displayed instantly, allowing additional measurements to be made in any areas of concern to the inspector.

The inspections are repeated on each car before the start of the race.  Once the race is over, a further comprehensive examination is made of the three leading cars and a less-detailed inspection carried out on the next three cars.  After each inspection, a detailed report is compiled and distributed to the race officials and the racing team.

Based in Leuven, close to the Belgian capital Brussels, Krypton is a specialist in the development of measuring systems for quality control in the automotive and aerospace industries.  The company has supplied PowerINSPECT with its inspection systems for just over one year.