Gaining a Technology Edge for a Competitive Edge in Manufacturing Composite Parts

Team member using MetraSCAN 3D to scan a military vehicle hood

In the highly competitive composite materials industry, companies are constantly looking to refine their processes and enhance product quality.

The challenges are multifaceted: the need for meticulous accuracy in part measurement, the demand for speed in production without compromising standards, and the adaptability to a diversity of intricate designs.

These challenges require sophisticated solutions that can streamline workflows, reduce time to market, and ensure that every product meets stringent quality benchmarks.

As businesses push the envelope on the capabilities of composite materials, only those who leverage advanced metrology technologies can maintain a competitive edge and deliver to the most demanding customer requirements.

Mont Blanc Composite: A Leader in Composite Materials

Mont Blanc Composite has been a reference in transforming composite materials for over 50 years.

Founded in 1965, the France-based company has become a benchmark for meeting the needs of the most demanding industries, including the transportation and military sectors.

Mont Blanc Composite’s expertise several composite material transformation technologies, combined with its 100% value chain integration, enables it to offer its customers functional assemblies, ready for integration or use.

The Challenge: Meeting Customers Ever-increasing Expectations

Mont Blanc Composite’s market development efforts and broadening reputation meant that the company’ was winning more and more customer projects.

“With robust customer demand and more strict quality requirements, we wanted to look for a solution to quickly and accurately check a high number of parts on a daily basis,’ explained Baptiste Droz-Vincent, Project Manager at Mont Blanc Composite.

“It was crucial to find a better approach to boost throughput and maintain exceptional part quality.”

The main criteria, apart from generating accurate, repeatable and fast 3D measurement results, was that the technology solution could easily be used by operators and integrated with third-party software.

In addition, the team was galvanized to find an alternative to its current 3D measurement methodologies due to a new contract to produce bus front ends.

A team member using the MetraSCAN 3D to scan a large bus part.

The Solution: Combining the HandySCAN 3D and MetraSCAN 3D

Mont Blanc Composite decided to implement the HandySCAN 3D scanner and MetraSCAN 3D optical CMM scanner at the inspection station at the end of the production process. The goal was to assess finished parts that were ready for dispatch. The team also chose VXinspect dimensional inspection software for inspection reporting.

The 3D scanners were placed on inspection jigs to meet the clamping conditions specified on customer drawings to speed up data acquisition. The operator then launched the program to acquire the 3D measurements and complete the part inspection report. A simple GO or NO GO tells the operator if a part can be shipped or not.

“The speed of the 3D scanners’ data acquisition, ease of use and software compatibility convinced us to invest in Creaform,” added Droz-Vincent.

A team member creating inspection reports with MetraSCAN 3D and VXinspect

The Results: Major Time-savings and Satisfied Customers

The implementation of the MetraSCAN has not only met but exceeded Mont Blanc Composite’s expectations in verifying finished parts and assemblies.

“Creaform’s technologies has brought about a revolution in our day-to-day operations, particularly in tooling development, by enabling quick dimensioning, which has proven invaluable for mold designing and creating bonding jigs. The tangible results extend beyond time savings; they represent a leap in productivity,” said Droz-Vincent.

The Conclusion: 3D Scanning Tech to Expand Business Opportunities

According to Droz-Vincent, Mont Blanc Composite would not have been able to meet customer requirements regarding pre-shipment inspections.

An added advantage? Opting for Creaform’s 3D measurement technologies has paved the way for the company to successfully explore new business development avenues, thanks to now being able to offer on-site and off-site inspection services for customers.

Now, that’s proof that investing in new technology can truly be a game-changer for a business’ competitive edge!

Results of VXInspect software scans of the military hood and bus front panel

Result of bus front panel scan in VXInspect software

Article written by Creaform

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