When it comes to manufacturing and quality control, portable CMMs — coordinate measuring machines — have become indispensable tools of innovation. This technology is changing the metrology industry and several other industries that are prevalent in today’s society.
These versatile CMM arms offer new, more efficient ways to gather data and measure complex geometric objects. With their help, industry leaders can streamline production and reduce downtime — leading to higher-quality parts and overall consumer goods.
Let’s explore the key benefits of portable CMM arms and explore real-world examples of their application across different industries.
Portable CMM Advantages
1. Mobility and Flexibility
Portable CMM arms are designed to be lightweight and ergonomic. This provides mobility on the shop floor. Bridge and Gantry CMMs are stationary pieces of machinery and require transporting parts to be measured, whereas a portable CMM arm can be moved around the production floor. This flexibility is crucial to measuring certain parts that cannot be removed from the shop floor and reduces overall downtime.
2. Real-Time Measurements
One of the primary advantages of portable CMM arms is their ability to deliver measurement data in real-time. CMM operators can gather dimensional accuracy and feedback instantly, allowing them to make quick decisions and adjustments. This capability is valuable in industries where precision is essential, like aerospace or medical device manufacturing.
3. User-Friendly Operations
Portable CMM arms are designed with user-friendly interfaces and innovative software, which makes them accessible to operators with varying expertise. This ease helps deliver faster implementation, reduced training time, and increased productivity.
4. Versatile Measurements
These CMM arms come with various probes and attachments, which allow for versatile measurements on the production floor. Whether the machine inspects large components, complex geometries, or narrow tolerances, portable CMMs provide the adaptability needed to meet diverse measurement needs.
How Portable CMM Arms Helps Industries
1. Automotive Manufacturing
The auto industry relies on precision and efficiency in every aspect of production. Portable CMM arms play a crucial role in this industry — they’re most often utilized for inspecting engine parts, body panels, and chassis elements. Being able to move the arm around the auto part helps streamline the inspection process and ensures production’s high standards are met.
As with the auto industry, aerospace manufacturers cannot afford to produce parts that aren’t accurate and safe. With a portable CMM, parts, including aircraft wings, turbine blades, and other complex parts, can be easily inspected and do not need to be transported to a metrology provider to be measured.
3. Medical Devices
The healthcare and medical device industry is utilizing metrology technology at greater levels than ever before. This highly regulated field requires inspecting intricate components, including surgical instruments and orthopedic implants. With real-time feedback, operators can ensure these components meet quality standards and are safe to be introduced into the market.
Portable CMMs and their software have become indispensable tools across these industries and many more — offering user-friendly operations, real-time measurements and data, and versatile measurement capabilities. As this tech continues to advance, these metrology devices will continue to play an important role in precision measurement.