Precision aerospace part manufacturer Alloy Specialties is one of the first adopters of a new robotic quality inspection technology, Tempo, from Hexagon’s Manufacturing Intelligence division. The technology has enabled the company to increase its production capacity and staff productivity through automation.
Tempo comes from a series of Hexagon products designed to help manufacturers begin automating their quality processes in a way that doesn’t require large-scale investment and disruption. The part loading system enables teams to queue multiple inspection jobs and sort rejected parts, and easy operation means anyone can operate a coordinate measuring machine (CMM). By using Tempo, Alloy Specialties is able to improve productivity by extending production time, improving labor efficiency throughout the day and aiding ‘lights-out’ operations.
Dawn M. DiMauro, president, Alloy Specialties said that the company became a beta site for Hexagon’s new Tempo System in 2020. “Currently, we are running one aerospace part exclusively on the Tempo system twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week," he said. "As a result, we have seen significant impact in reducing our backlog, increasing capacity, and freeing up other CMMs. We anticipate being able to add additional parts to the Tempo queue soon and look forward to a continued partnership with Hexagon.”
The use of Tempo is part of a continuous push by Alloy Specialties to increase automation and, along with program revisions, has contributed to 50 percent faster quality inspection processes. This, in turn, is enabling the company to reduce costs and meet increased demand. As a result, Alloy Specialties is considering investing in an additional Tempo System in 2021.
Making small incremental investments in automating quality processes, through solutions like Tempo, can help manufacturers address immediate challenges and prepare for broader transformation. For example, Tempo is helping Alloy Specialties free up their skilled professionals, enabling them to take on more work while keeping staff costs down. In the current climate, the need to stagger shifts and schedule jobs with less staff on site can lead to resourcing issues. Making metrology processes more automated and more accessible empowers more agile cross-functional teams.
Ingo Lindner, VP Stationary CMM Devices, Hexagon’s Manufacturing Intelligence division said, “… it’s important for customers that automation doesn’t require a wholesale redesign of their workflow,” he said. “Tempo is designed for fast installation with smart configuration software that guides the user through setup, so there is no need disrupt processes while it is implemented.
“As Alloy Specialties has found, smaller, incremental investments in the right technologies can have a huge impact. They can enable manufacturers to address the skills shortage by using their staff more effectively, enabling ‘lights-out’ production and paving the way for greater capacity and agility across their businesses.”
Related Glossary Terms
Science of measurement; the principles on which precision machining, quality control and inspection are based. See precision machining, measurement.