Dallara, the world-famous competitive race car manufacturer from Emilia, uses the innovative FARO Edge ScanArm to run the quality control for its components.
In 1972, following a distinguished career in the automotive industry, Gian Paolo Dallara founded Dallara Automobili in Varano de’ Melegari, near Parma, Italy. Since then, the company has expanded, designing and building cars for almost all of the racing competitions and winning races worldwide.
This is a success story, the result of a passion for mechanics, involving the company‘s 180 employees (including 60 engineers) on a daily basis: men and women who work with passion and skill on high-technology projects in order to gain the edge in the fiercely competitive world of motor racing. In particular, it is absolutely necessary that each stage of production and assembly carried out in the factory at Varano de’ Melegari is tested and validated using adequate measurement and control procedures. Paola Carlorosi, Unsurpassable measurements Quality Assurance & Quality Control Manager at Dallara Automobili, explains: “Our cars are a concentration of high technology and innovation.
Quality control is of paramount importance as it must ensure that Dallara cars are produced according to expected standards, providing exceptional performance and reliability.” FARO’s sophisticated portable measurement equipment fully satisfies the technological requirements of Dallara Automobili and FARO has been the automotive company’s chosen partner for a number of years. Carlorosi: “Our collaboration has been ongoing since 2007, demonstrating the strength of our partnership. Our latest investment dates back to 2012 when we decided to buy a 2.7m measuring arm, the FARO Edge ScanArm, which we mainly use for non-contact quality control and reverse engineering.” The FARO Edge ScanArm – which combines the FARO Edge portable measurement arm with a laser scanning probe (FARO Laser Line Probe) – is a portable 7-axis coordinate measuring machine (CMM), which allows the user to easily check product quality through 3D inspections, comparisons with the CAD design, dimensional analysis and reverse engineering. The integrated Laser Line Probe for laser scanning ensures a perfect 3D measurement without touching the surface of the product. At Dallara, the FARO Edge ScanArm is mainly used to check the airfoils and the most important structural components made of carbon fibre. “With this new measuring device,” continues Paola Carlorosi, “the speed of data acquisition has increased enormously. Considering that the device operator completed the training course and was operational after just three days, we can only be satisfied.”
And that’s not all: “The data analysis phase has become easier as the CAM2 Measure 10 measurement software develops really clear, easy-to-navigate reports. Today, reporting is much more comprehensive and informative than ever before and, once the point cloud has been obtained, every detail can be analysed section by section – especially the airfoils – by comparing the theoretical project data with the actual measurements. We also execute processes and controls for external customers who are very pleased to receive reports that are easy to read, clear and transparent, even for non-experts. It is an advantage for our business.” Another important benefit is that it is no longer necessary to treat components with opacifiers, which was necessary in the past for the non-contact measurement of black and glossy carbon surfaces. Paola Carlorosi: “The FARO laser probe technology allows polished carbon surfaces to be scanned without having to apply opacifiers, which also required processing to remove the product afterwards.
The whole operation has therefore become much faster: we save 30 minutes on average for each square metre to be checked.” Dallara is currently using the FARO Edge ScanArm in the development and construction of the chassis for the new 2014 Japanese Championship Super Formula. It has been used right from the prototype phase. Paola Carlorosi: “Even in this situation, we have been able to perform quality controls more precisely, saving on average 50% of the time spent on the same activities in the past. It’s an amazing achievement.” And she concludes: “In general, the checks performed during the production and testing phases allow us to reduce errors, improve our core manufacturing processes and, in conclusion, achieve a higher quality level. If these checks are carried out using high-performance equipment that increases quality and reduces workload, then the benefits are definitely worthy of a Grand Prix!”
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