Throwback Thursday: CT Scanning Reports

Once a mold produces a part, computed tomography (CT scanning) can step in to help that mold meet customer approval through intense validation. Read how in this archived article.


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Once the initial CT scan and processing is complete, a variety of reports can be gleaned from additional computer processing that generally takes just minutes, including:

Part-to-CAD Comparison is first on our list for good reason.  Here’s where we can quickly see deviations between a part and its original design.  This visual depiction reveals deviations from design in various colors to make those deviations immediately obvious.  The CAD depiction and in-tolerance areas can even be omitted from the display to further emphasize deviations.

Assembly Analysis shows multiple parts in one assembly, revealing how they fit and work together.  These assemblies may be cross-sectioned along any plane in space to better visualize gaps, distortions, etc.  Less dense materials may be omitted from view, to more clearly see small details. 

Part-to-Part Analysis gives a quick, visual comparison of parts to one another, checking consistency across multiple cavities shot over a time range.  The visual is the same as Part-to CAD comparison, but rather than using the CAD model as the control surface, parts are compared with one another.  This capability leverages another benefit of CT scanning—that multiple parts up to the capacity of the scanner, may all be set up in one scan for more efficient evaluation.

Void and Inclusion Analysis highlights an exciting feature of CT scanning.  We aren’t just inspecting the surfaces with CT scanning; we’re actually looking right through a part and verifying its integrity through and through.  Void and inclusion analysis gives us a visual depiction as well as statistics of voids (bubbles in the part fill) and inclusions, non-filled or surface distortion issues, even in hidden areas.  No other inspection can reveal such useful information without destroying the part and thus introducing distortion errors.

Complete Plastic Part Inspection provides a more traditional reporting method.  In this case, an inspection report is “designed” or programmed to output results more like traditional metrology, yet in a fraction of the time.  Much like programming a CMM, a program is written to collect specific critical data locations and then those locations are retrieved from the scan data and included in a traditional report depicting locations and dimensions.

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