Programming a robot as easily as a CMM 1

Operators of Coordinate Measuring Machines (CMM) greatly value the ability to move the CMM arms and measure parts using a single, unified software application. The convenience and efficiency gained from this seamless integration cannot be overstated. This all-in-one software solution streamlines the 3D measurement and inspection process, making it significantly easier for the operator to manage.

What are the challenges to face when carrying out inspection work with a robot?

The situation becomes more complicated when it involves using robots for inspection. Metrologists face considerable challenges if they are required to program the robot using a separate software application from their metrology solution. This dual-software approach necessitates either learning how to program the robot themselves or outsourcing the task to a robot programmer. The first option requires training and the latter option results in a loss of autonomy over the inspection process. In either case, the workload is increased due to the need to synchronize the robot’s movements with the measuring equipment.

How can the use of software help optimize inspection work with a robot?

Given the choice, metrologists would undoubtedly prefer to program the robot using the same software application that they use for their metrology, just like they do on the CMM. This unified, all-in-one approach allows the operator to issue robot instructions and metrology instructions within the same program. The software then automatically converts these instructions and communicates directly with the robot. This method revolutionizes the workflow for metrologists by simplifying the process and abstracting away the hardware complexity.

Nonetheless, it remains essential to ensure that the tasks can be executed smoothly without any glitches. These verifications can be conducted offline in a virtual simulated environment or directly in a cell physically connected to the robot and measurement equipment.

What are the benefits of programming a robot like a CMM ?

The benefits of being able to program a robot in the same way as a CMM are:

  • A flexible solution
  • Faster measurement
  • Speed of deploying instructions to the robot
  • Issuing the correct measurement instructions regardless of the robot’s brand
  • No need to be a robot expert
  • Saves time
  • An efficient way of doing things

By adopting a single software application for robot inspection programming, like exists for CMM, operators can eliminate the cumbersome task of synchronizing actions between separate systems, leading to a more efficient and straightforward 3D measurement and inspection process.