Red Bull Technology - Milton Keynes
Red Bull Technology

The portable measurement secrets to maintaining pole position

The variety of components that Red Bull Technology need to measure is vast. At their factory in Milton Keynes, UK, the workflow is governed by time management, this defines that the Inspection Department needs to be accurate, flexible and most importantly – fast! There are no second chances in an Formula 1 race hence Red Bull Technology are using ROMER Absolute Arms and CMS laser scanners from Hexagon Metrology to keep the Red Bull Racing cars in pole position.

Every small improvement made to the car has the potential to contribute to the speed and ultimately the gaining of championship points. Time constraints in the past had meant compromising which components were and were not measured, potentially leading to issues throughout the racing season. Now with three portable measuring arms amongst their arsenal of metrology equipment, Red Bull Technology has the time to concentrate on every last micron to ensure the car is kept ahead of the pack.

The ROMER Absolute Arms are used with two different types of software for 3D scanning and point-to-point measurement, the same software is used on the other metrology systems across the factory including Leica Laser Trackers.  All the systems are 7 Axes arms with a TESA Kinematic Joint which allows the connection of a Hexagon Metrology CMS 108 laser scanner.
Measurement is part of the day to day production process inside the Red Bull Technology's plant; the arms are based within the composite production area and are continuously used to check mouldings and finished components. “The thing that we are trying to do is improve our production flow and make sure that we are checking components as accurately as possible”. States Chris Charnley, Quality Manager, Red Bull Technology. 

The portability of a ROMER arm lends itself to the vast manufacturing facility at Red Bull Technology, wherever a measurement may be needed, for example a chassis on a machining jig, the arm is easily moved to the location required, saving time in the process.

Rapid prototyping equals a faster car
The rapid development nature of F1 depends heavily on the ability to gather 3D point data quickly and effectively. To achieve this within the required time constraints Red Bull Technology are using a Hexagon Metrology CMS 108 laser line scanner which when coupled with any of their arms provides the latest in 3D scanning technology. The CMS 108 has automatic laser power control which automatically adapts laser sensitivity to match the surface conditions being scanned. 

The company had been looking for a 3D scanner for a number of years, but it wasn’t until they witnessed the capabilities of the new CMS 108 that a purchase was made.  Chris describes why the CMS 108 was the right scanner for them, “The lack of need for operator intervention to keep changing settings in order to scan different surfaces means that varying colours and materials are scanned easily with only one setting. This contributes wholly to our time management needs”. . . . .

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