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HandyProbe fills the gap between measuring arms and laser trackers
HandyProbe fills the gap between measuring arms and laser trackers
HandyProbe fills the gap between measuring arms and laser trackers

HandyProbe fills the gap between measuring arms and laser trackers

Added to MTDCNC by Measurement Solutions on 01 October 2014

With an industry striving to offer portable measuring solutions and move away from the traditional co-ordinate measuring machine (CMM); measurement arms and laser trackers have witnessed growing popularity. However, these systems have not entirely lived up to expectations with portable arms having accuracy and reliability issues, whereas price has always been a restricting factor with laser trackers. To eliminate the precision concerns of portable arms and avoid the excessive cost of laser trackers, Measurement Solutions has now launched its new HandyProbe system to fill the gap between measuring arms and laser trackers.

The new HandyProbe is a truly portable product, which unlike laser trackers and measurement arms doesn’t need to be physically transported with considerable effort for it to be used. The HandyProbe measuring system consists of 2 elements – the small, lightweight handheld HandyProbe, plus the high accuracy C-Track camera positioning system. The C-Track uses the latest photogrammetry techniques to accurately track and establish the position and orientation of the HandyProbe in real-time. The C-Track can be mounted on a simple lightweight tripod or anywhere that it can see the object to be measured. It communicates with the HandyProbe via an integrated wireless communication system. The whole measuring system is packaged in a single transport case that can be easily moved around. It also fits in the back of a family hatchback car, with a setup time of just a few minutes.

In order to achieve high accuracy in real manufacturing environments, the C-Track incorporates TRUaccuracy Technology, a solution that guarantees accurate and reliable measurements in all environments. Unlike other devices that demand stability of the measuring system and the part being measured to achieve accurate measurements, TRUaccuracy provides automatic compensation for any movements within the measuring system, such as vibrations from machinery, presses, passing fork-lift trucks or movement of the part.

The system incorporates a dynamic tracking system whereby the HandyProbe, C-Track positioning device and the part can be moved at any time. This is achieved through the use of reference markers attached to the part being measured, which means the coordinate reference system is virtually attached directly to the part. Unlike portable arms or laser trackers, where the measuring reference is the measuring device itself, this totally eliminates the need for heavy duty stands and highly stable setups with clamped parts. As TRUaccuracy also means the part and the C-Track can be moved with no loss in accuracy, it also removes the need to perform complex “leap-frog” calculations, thereby removing the possibility of human error and massively improving flexibility, efficiency, accuracy, and above all ease-of-use.

The HandyProbe system is available in 3 measuring volumes and accuracies. The linear measuring accuracy starts from under 25 microns with measuring volumes available from 4 to 15 cubic metres. As the measurement system is not dependent on a fixed arm or laser tracker, the whole measuring volume is usable, and can be easily extended using the TRUaccuracy technology. This makes the system ideal for parts from a few hundred millimetres up to 10m or more in size.

For more advanced applications, several C-Track optical trackers can be linked together to provide a measuring cell, so there is no need to move a single C-Track around the part. The HandyProbe system can also be upgraded at any time with the addition of the MetraScan handheld laser scanner, providing high speed scanning for inspection and reverse engineering applications and further enhancing the versatility of the HandyProbe solution.

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