Delcam’s PowerINSPECT 2013 offers dual-device inspection
The 2013 release of Delcam’s PowerINSPECT inspection software offers unique dual-device inspection options that allow measurement with two portable devices at the same time. PowerINSPECT is believed to be the only inspection software that supports simultaneous operation of different types of device, including laser scanning, from different manufacturers.
Other enhancements in the new version include improved handling of point-cloud data, group editing of probing parameters, graphical editing of boundaries for raster-based inspection, more flexibility in programming dual-column CMMs, and easier measurement and marking out when using PowerINSPECT for clay modelling.
Full details, including videos showing the new functionality, are on the PowerINSPECT learning zone at www.delcam.tv/pi2013/lz.
PowerINSPECT is firmly established as the world’s leading hardware-independent inspection software. It combines the ability to work with all types of inspection device with a comprehensive range of inspection routines for taking simple measurements, for inspection of geometric features and for analysing complex 3D surfaces. The resulting reports present detailed information in an easy-to-read format, that can be understood by all engineers not just inspection specialists.
The ability to provide simultaneous measurement from two devices is an extension of the functionality for dual-column CMMs included in the 2012 R2 release of PowerINSPECT. The main benefit is the same – the ability to reduce inspection times both by measuring a complete object in a single set-up and by taking data simultaneously from two sources.
As with the dual-column mode, the two-device technique works in a similar manner to the single-device version of PowerINSPECT: models are loaded in the same way; inspection items are created using the same methods and so on, meaning that little extra training is required.
Dual-device operation works around the line-of-sight limitations of laser trackers and other optical measuring devices. The new version of PowerINSPECT enables both sides of the same object to be measured simultaneously with two laser trackers. This could have huge time savings in any production line as it would minimise the need to reposition the object or measuring device when inspecting all around the component.
PowerINSPECT can also combine measurements from two different types of device. For example, a laser tracker can be used to check the long-range accuracy of a large component while a portable arm is being used to measure specific critical features in a confined space.
The new dual-device option is related to the dual-column module for CMMs which is also further improved. In particular, it has been made easier to switch between single-column and dual-column operation, so making it practical to inspect two small items independently with the two columns, as well as to inspect separate areas of a single large object.
A new function that will simplify programming for all PowerINSPECT CNC and OMV users is a new ‘Probing and Parameters’ item that modifies the probing parameters of subsequent probed features. For example, if a different probe or measuring speed is required, the new setting can be applied to any group of measurements or even the complete inspection sequence with a single action. An extra benefit is that similar edits can be made to any programs read into PowerINSPECT 2013 that were originally created in earlier versions of the software.
Raster-based inspection has been made more flexible with the ability to edit the measurement volume graphically. This is in addition to the previous options to use typed dimensions, or a CAD surface or group of surfaces, as the boundary.
Laser scanning of a series of parts has also been made easier. Labels applied to the results from the first part, for example to identify critical points, are now regenerated automatically in the results from subsequent parts so repeated inspections are more automated. In addition, the picking of points for alignment of scan data has been improved, with points being highlighted as they are selected so it is easier to spot any that have been missed.
Finally, improvements have been made for companies using PowerINSPECT for clay modelling, for example in automotive design studios. New time-saving features make it easier for users to display the details of digitised curves, to switch between curves, and to select, edit and mark out points within the curves.
14 May 2013