NVision

NVision (13)

Steve Kersen of NVision Inc. is pleased that Americans are being moved by the movie “American Sniper,” which tells the story of Navy SEAL Chris Kyle, who, with 160 confirmed kills, is recognized as America’s most successful sniper. Prior to the film, NVision participated in honoring the soldier by assisting in the creation of a life size statue of Kyle.

Kyle, portrayed in the Clint Eastwood-directed movie by actor Bradley Cooper, served four tours of duty in Iraq and received numerous medals and commendations for his combat service before his tragic shooting death at the hands of a fellow veteran in 2013.

Two years ago, before production on the Eastwood film began, NVision volunteered its 3D laser-scanning services to Sarasota, FL sculptor Greg Marra, who was at the time creating a life-size sculpture of Kyle in order to pay tribute to Kyle’s service as well as that of all members of the military. As part of the sculpture project, Marra had contacted NVision to help him create an exact replica of the rifle that Kyle used while in the military. “We were more than happy to volunteer our services to help Mr. Marra create this tribute to a fallen American hero,” says Kersen, NVision’s Vice President of Sales and Marketing.

After Kyle’s widow Taya granted NVision permission to use her husband’s rifle for the project, company technicians went to work scanning the gun and collecting all the essential data on the rifle’s geometry, its precise shape and size - every dimension necessary to create an exact duplicate of the weapon.

The technicians utlilized NVision’s own HandHeld 3D laser scanner, which is both accurate and fast – able to obtain dimensions from objects of almost any size and shape while capturing 60,000 measurements per second.

“I can only say that it was an extremely moving experience to be touching and holding the very rifle that had saved so many American lives in Iraq,” says Kersen. “Kyle’s weapon is a valuable personal and historical artifact, and we made sure it was treated with the utmost care while it was in our possession.”

After about two hours of scanning, NVision technicians had captured all the intricate details of the gun’s geometry. A 3D computer model was then created and used to make a replica of the gun to be placed with Marra’s statue of Kyle.

Subsequently NVision scanned the entire bronze statue so that a digital version of it could be archived and replicated in the future.

Says Kersen: “After the scanning was completed, I had the privilege of speaking with Kyle’s widow and she thanked us for our participation in the statue project. Now, with the immediate success of ‘American Sniper,’ I hope she realizes the appreciation and gratitude this country holds for the services rendered by her late husband and all his fellow service members.”

For more information, visit: www.nvision3d.com

Turbine parts supplier Power Plant Services is using an NVision HandHeld laser scanner to reduce by 60% the time required to reverse engineer turbine blades. In the past it took the Melrose Park, Illinois company 15 hours to produce a 3D computer aided design (CAD) file from a customer's turbine blade. But that has now changed. "By switching to NVision's HandHeld laser scanner we can produce an accurate CAD file in only six hours, which makes it possible to deliver a new blade to our customer one full day faster than was possible in the past," said Chad Fisher, Project Manager for Power Plant Services. That time saving can result in significant cost savings for the company's customers.

Power Plant Services engineers and manufacturers high-performance alternatives for original equipment manufacturer (OEM) turbine parts and systems and supplies a wide array of other parts and services to the power generation, pulp and paper, petroleum refining and steel industries. The company produces more than 10,000 parts per year and has performed repairs on major turbine components for more than 40 utility plants. Delivery time is critical because customers often place orders after power generation equipment has broken down, which can sometimes cost them hundreds of thousands of dollars a day in lost revenues.

"Previously we used a contact probe to measure part elevations point by point in different cross-sections of the airfoil and entered the measurements in solid modeling software," Fisher said. "Then we created lofts between the elevations. We felt that laser scanning could improve on this process by capturing the entire profile of the airfoil and eliminating the need for measuring elevations and lofting. We looked at several different models and selected the NVision Hand-Held scanner both because of its portability and because NVision provides a complete solution including both hardware and software so we only have to work with a single organization for support."

The NVision Handheld scanner is a powerful portable scanning device that is capable of capturing 3D geometry from objects of almost any size or shape. The scanner is attached to a mechanical arm that moves about the object, freeing the user to capture data rapidly with a high degree of resolution and accuracy. As a part is inspected, the scanner generates a point cloud consisting of millions points each with x,y,z coordinates and i,j,k vectors. Integrated software that comes with the scanner is used to convert the point cloud to an STL polygon and an optional tripod provides complete portability in the field. Intuitive software allows real-time rendering, full model editing, polygon reduction, and data output to all standard 3D packages.

"The HandHeld scanner substantially reduces the time required to reverse engineer airfoils and other parts," Fisher said. "Since we began using it we save about nine hours per part and we are also more confident in the results because we get many more points of data than in the past. In many cases we are able to save our customers large amounts of money by getting their turbines up and running a day earlier than was possible in the past. Another advantage is that the portability of the HandHeld scanner means that we can now go to our customer's facility to reverse engineer parts that are too big for them to ship to us."

For more information, visit: www.ppsvcs.com or www.nvision3d.com

Purdue University’s Formula SAE team is utilizing NVision's HandHeld laser scanner to pursue its goal of taking home a first-place trophy in the annual Formula SAE Competition. The team anticipates that reverse engineering data obtained by the HandHeld scanner will allow for a strong Purdue showing at the upcoming 2013 competition.

The Formula SAE competition is an annual event sponsored by the Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE) in which teams of SAE student members from about 130 colleges and universities around the world compete to design and manufacture the best all-around small formula-style racing car. The competition’s restrictions on the vehicle frame and engine are limited, which challenges the students’ knowledge, creativity, and imagination. Their goal in the competition is to produce a prototype of a high performance car that is low in cost, easy to maintain, and reliable. Also of concern is the vehicle’s marketability, so the team members must keep in mind factors such visual aesthetics and passenger comfort when they design the cars. The end result of participation is a valuable engineering experience for students and an opportunity to be part of an engineering project requiring a team effort, which often improves students’ skills in time management and communication.

In the most recent competition, the Purdue team needed to reverse engineer some of its engine components. In order to do that, however, it first needed to create a 3D CAD model of the engine and its parts. The Purdue team obtained access to a HandHeld laser scanner from NVision, a leader for over two decades in providing the highest accuracy non-contact optical measurement systems and services for reverse engineering and inspection.

The NVision Handheld scanner is a powerful portable scanning device that is capable of capturing 3D geometry from objects of almost any size or shape. The scanner is attached to a mechanical arm that moves about the object, freeing the user to capture data rapidly with a high degree of resolution and accuracy. An optional tripod provides complete portability in the field. Intuitive software allows full model editing, polygon reduction, and data output to all standard CAD packages.
 
Engineers were able to quickly scan the engine and camshaft using the HandHeld scanner. The scanning process took less than one day, after which NVision converted the scan data into an STL model, which was then provided to the Purdue team and used to analyze its engine components.

With the information from NVision’s scanning now added to its knowledge base, the Purdue team intends to devote the upcoming year to building and testing a racecar that will allow it to achieve its dream of taking home a first-place trophy in the competition.

“NVision is proud to offer support and assistance to the Purdue Formula SAE team at no charge,” said Steve Kersen, NVision’s Vice President of Sales & Marketing. “We feel it’s important not only to invest in tomorrow’s engineers but also to help students who are passionate about their dreams.”

For more information, visit: www.nvision3d.com

Synappsys Digital Services, a sculpture enlargement and reduction company based in Norman, OK, used NVision's 3D HandHeld laser scanner to create the model for a sculptured tribute to U.S. Special Forces in Afghanistan that is now on display near Ground Zero in New York City.

In the wake of the September 11 terrorist attacks, President George W. Bush dispatched Task Force Dagger to Afghanistan. The task force is a joint Special Operations team consisting of Green Berets from the 5th Special Forces Group, aircrew members from the 160th Special Operations Aviation Regiment, and Air Force Combat controllers. The men were offered horses by the Afghan tribes they were supporting and rode into battle with the Afghan Northern Alliance against the Taliban.

When sculptor Douwe Blumberg of DeMossville, Kentucky, saw a photo of the Special Forces soldiers fighting on horseback in Afghanistan he was moved to create a sculpture. He spent nine months creating an 18 inch tall clay model called a maquette. The maquette depicted a Green Beret on horseback holding field glasses and an M4 carbine with attached grenade launcher. An anonymous group of Wall Street bankers who lost friends and co-workers in the attacks learned about his effort and commissioned Blumberg to build a large-scale version for a monument near Ground Zero.

Blumberg contracted with Synappsys Digital Services to create the large-scale version of the maquette. Synappsys has produced many such enlargements for dozens of leading artists. "We selected the NVision HandHeld laser scanner for this work because the NVision software shows in great detail what the scanner is seeing," said Alan Ray, owner of Synappsys. "This feature saves a lot of time because without it we could never be sure that we had scanned the entire model until after we had finished the job and reviewed the point cloud."

The NVision Handheld scanner is a powerful portable scanning device that is capable of capturing 3D geometry from objects of almost any size or shape. The scanner is attached to a mechanical arm that moves about the object, freeing the user to capture data rapidly with a high degree of resolution and accuracy. An optional tripod provides complete portability in the field. Intuitive software allows full model editing, polygon reduction, and data output to all standard CAD packages.

Synappsys first scanned the maquette in order to create a CAD model of the sculpture. The HandHeld scanner collected millions of points on the maquette. The resulting point cloud was converted into a mesh and then imported into a rapid prototyping software package where it was converted to a watertight 3D digital representation of the maquette. Synappsys then enlarged this CAD model and used it to create a computer numerical control (CNC) program. They sectioned the computer model into pieces and produced each section on a CNC milling machine to the final size. The individual pieces were assembled with glue. Clay was applied to the foam model and Blumberg tooled the final surface. The resultant life-and-a-half-scale, 13-foot-tall foam model of the sculpture was used to produce the mold for the final 5000-pound bronze sculpture.

The statue is titled "De Oppresso Liber" (to free the oppressed), the Green Berets motto. It was introduced to the public during the Veteran's Day Parade in New York City in 2011. Currently displayed at One World Financial Center opposite Ground Zero in New York City, Blumberg expects that it will be installed in a permanent location immediately adjacent to the 9/11 Memorial and Ground Zero at the World Trade Center site in the near future.

For more information, visit: www.nvision3d.com

NVision, Inc., a leader in 3D non-contact optical scanning for over 21 years, announced that it has launched a new project portal for its clients. The new portal, which utilizes TeamPlatform, provides NVision’s clients with full, speedy access to customized data exchange Web pages related to their projects.
 
“NVision’s new project portal is another step forward in ensuring the success of our clients’ projects,” said Steve Kersen, VP of Sales and Marketing at NVision. “The difficulties of trying to coordinate CAD projects in person, or via email or online file-sharing services can be enormous and time-consuming. With our new portal service, clients can go directly online to their customized project pages to exchange, open and compare files in over 200 formats, including CAD models and 3D Scan files.”

Additionally, for closer project involvement, or for long-term or larger projects, NVision’s clients can access online project workspaces for collaboration.

Within these workspaces, clients can:

  • Check the project’s progress and follow ongoing issues with real-time updates.

  • Track different file versions, add annotations to screen-captured images, comment on files, collaborate on documentation and discussion, and make use of video streaming technology.

“One of the workspaces’ most valuable features is the online 3D viewer, which enables our clients to get high-quality 3D views from their web-browser in order to make the quick decisions so often necessary in design and re-engineering work,” said Kersen.

“Our client feedback thus far has been clear: the TeamPlatform project portal greatly improves clarity of communication and facilitates project success.”

For more information, visit: www.nvision3d.com

NVision, Inc. is helping sculptor Somers Randolph gain additional revenue by laser-scanning his creations and saving them as computer models, which can later be used to reproduce the original works at any size on a 3D printer. For example, Randolph's wife Hillary has created a successful line of jewelry based on soapstone shapes that Randolph whittled in his spare time. Once these hand-crafted shapes are laser-scanned, duplicates can be produced with the click of a few buttons.

And there will no doubt be demand for those reproductions. New Mexico Traveler Magazine says: "Santa Fe master stone sculptor Somers Randolph combines creativity, skill and passion to create exquisite artwork from stone and to whittle the intricate forms for his line of fine gold and silver jewelry…When creativity combines with technical abilities the result is a superb mastery of materials."

"I often spend two to three months creating a shape in marble or other stone," Somers Randolph said. "But for 30 years, once I made and sold them they were gone forever. Although technically I still own the forms of all the sculptures I've sold, in the past it was never practical to store or reproduce them."

The success of his wife's jewelry line got Randolph thinking about the value of the shapes he creates and the need to preserve them. Through research he discovered the technology of laser scanning which makes it possible to create a computer model of a physical shape regardless of its complexity, which can later be used to reproduce the shape to an extraordinary level of accuracy.

"I selected NVision's laser scanning service because they can easily handle any size shape I send them - from the largest to the smallest - provide fast turnaround, and are affordable," said Randolph. "The people from NVision took the time to help me understand the laser scanning process and worked with me to understand what type of output I needed to ensure that my work would be preserved."

NVision's laser scanning works by projecting a line of laser light onto the surfaces to be measured, while a camera continuously triangulates the changing distance and profile of the laser line as it sweeps along. The position and orientation of the scanning head is also continuously monitored by a highly accurate localizing device as the data is captured. Instead of collecting points one by one, the laser scanner picks up tens of thousands of points every second. This means that digitizing even the most complicated parts can often be accomplished in an hour or two.

"I look forward to scanning all of my best sculptures," Randolph said. "The computer model provided by NVision makes it easy to reproduce the shapes either in plastic with a 3D printer or as a bronze casting. I feel good knowing that the computer models will forever preserve these shapes for whatever uses I or my heirs can imagine in the future."

For more information, visit: www.nvision3d.com

A national marketing services provider recently used NVision Inc.'s Engineering Service Division to reverse engineer an essential part in a store display for one of the nation's largest optical retailers. NVision was able to quickly scan the part and provide the CAD files necessary to mass-produce it for the display in the retailer's stores nationwide, enabling millions in annual sales.

WebbMason is on-demand marketing services provider headquartered in Hunt Valley, MD whose clients include one of the country's largest optical retailers. Webbmason invented a custom display to showcase their client's ability to provide a multitude of different sunglass lens coatings. The display uses small plastic rings about 2 inches in diameter, into which the optical retailer can snap a sample lens, which can then be looked through by customers.

"We invented and provide the display these sample lenses are used with and we also distribute the sample lenses themselves, but we've only recently been asked to provide the lens rings the sample lenses snap into. So this was an entirely new product for us," said Dan Michels, Senior Account Executive & Retail Solutions Specialist for Webbmason. "I did some research and discovered that, although we have physical samples of the part, plastic injection molders still need a CAD drawing from which they make their molds for mass-production. Unfortunately, we didn't have a CAD drawing of an existing ring. I did further research into reverse engineering and learned that one way to obtain a CAD file of a part is have it scanned with a 3D laser scanning system and then create the CAD drawing from the scan."

Michels, who works out of Webbmason's southern division in Fort Worth TX, learned of NVision's scanning services and met with the company's engineers. "I could immediately tell that these guys were pros. They knew what they were doing, they were well-equipped and staffed to provide me with exactly what I needed. Above all, they were willing and interested in working with me."

NVision engineers were able to quickly scan the lens ring using the company's HandHeld laser scanner. The NVision Handheld scanner is a powerful portable scanning device that is capable of capturing 3D geometry from objects of almost any size or shape. The scanner is attached to a mechanical arm that moves about the object, freeing the user to capture data rapidly with a high degree of resolution and accuracy. An optional tripod provides complete portability in the field. Intuitive software allows full model editing, polygon reduction, and data output to all standard CAD packages.

The scanning process took less than a day. After it was completed, NVision provided Michels with the CAD files needed to mass-produce the ring for the display.

"Lens coatings are any optical retailer's most profitable product, so selling Rx sunglasses is pretty important," said Michels. "It can be said that NVision's help with this part enables millions of dollars of our client's most profitable sales annually. They also helped us add another product to our already broad offering and I'm looking forward to working with them on my next custom retail display project."

For more information, visit: www.nvision3d.com

Aircraft Technologies, Inc., a leading manufacturer of toilets for corporate jets, saved $20,000 and four weeks in reduced tooling costs/time for a new model by utilizing NVision's laser scanning and engineering services. "By scanning an existing upper and lower bowl assembly and modifying the resulting CAD models to fit parts that we already had tooling for, we substantially reduced the tooling cost and got the product to market faster," said Mark Riebesehl, Owner and Vice President of Operations for Aircraft Technologies.

Aircraft Technologies Inc. provides single-source sanitary solutions for airframe manufacturers, completion centers and maintenance and repair facilities. The company's Series 90 externally serviced toilets are made of thermoformed Kydex and composites for a high strength-to-weight ratio. The user simply closes the cover for an automatic flush. The new variant of the Series 90 will be produced in volumes of about 70 per year for a corporate aircraft manufacturer.

The main parts in the new design are the bowl cap, spray ring and upper and lower bowl assembly. The normal approach to tooling up for a new toilet would have required designing all four parts from scratch and then building a new thermoforming tool for each part. However, Riebesehl noted that an existing bowl cap and spray ring from one toilet and an existing upper and lower bowl from another toilet were all close to the new design and would work perfectly if modifications could be made to the upper and lower bowl to make them fit together.

"The upper and lower bowl were designed before we started using CAD so there was no model that we could modify," Riebesehl said. "I had heard about NVision's laser scanning and decided to try reverse engineering the existing upper and lower bowl tooling. We hired NVision's Engineering Service Division to scan the two parts and provide us with the CAD models.

"The upper and lower bowl tooling was nearly irreplaceable so my partner and I flew to NVision's facility in Dallas and stood there while they scanned the parts. NVision's team worked quickly and efficiently and we flew back with the scan data the very same day. NVision then sent us the CAD surface models via FTP."

Laser scanning works by projecting a line of laser light onto the surfaces to be measured while a camera continuously triangulates the changing distance and profile of the laser line as it sweeps along. A computer translates the video image of the line into accurate 3D coordinates of the object's geometry. NVision engineers then created point clouds consisting of millions of points and used the scan data to create solid models and then output the IGES/STEP CAD surface models.

"When we got back we modified the CAD models to mate up with the existing bowl cap and spray ring," said Riebesehl. "Then we generated CNC programs and built the tooling on a machining center. Everything fit together perfectly, validating the accuracy of the laser scanning process. Using NVision's scanning services saved us in the neighborhood of $20,000 from only having to build two tools instead of four and also helped us get the new product into production four weeks earlier."

For more information, visit: www.nvision3d.com

NVision, Inc., a leader in 3D non-contact optical scanning for over 21 years, recently provided an orthodontic company with the information it needed to recalibrate its CT scanner. The company, an orthodontic supplier, utilized NVision’s Engineering Service Division to scan a human skull as part of the verification/inspection process for its in-house CT machine. The scanning results provided by NVision contained all the measurement data necessary for the orthodontic company to recalibrate its CT machine to the highest possible level of accuracy.

The use of CT scans in orthodontics has increased in recent years, primarily because such scans can provide practitioners with an enhanced view of a patient's facial anatomy. Unlike traditional 2D X-rays, CT scans provide a three-dimensional image of the patient's skull, teeth, roots, and jaw that can be viewed from all angles, providing extra information that can't be obtained soley with X-rays. This information can aid orthodontists and oral surgeons in diagnosing problems and planning treatment.

The orthodontic company needed a high-precision 3D scan of the skull to compare to measurement results obtained from its own cone-beam CT scanner. They sent NVision the skull and engineers began scanning it with NVision’s HandHeld laser scanner.

The NVision Handheld scanner is a powerful portable scanning device that is capable of capturing 3D geometry from objects of almost any size or shape. The scanner is attached to a mechanical arm that moves about the object, freeing the user to capture data rapidly with a high degree of resolution and accuracy. An optional tripod provides complete portability in the field. Intuitive software allows full model editing, polygon reduction, and data output to all standard CAD packages.

“Our scan of the skull confirmed that the orthodontic company’s CT machine, although only 1/1000 of an inch off in its measurements, was in need of some recalibration,” says Colin Ellis, Engineering Manager at NVision. “The company subsequently used our skull measurements as its key tool in the recalibration process.”

For more information, visit: www.nvision3d.com

Engineers from NVision, Inc., using the company’s HandHeld Scanner, were able to quickly reverse engineer a large impellor for a major hydroelectric facility, sparing the facility what would have been an extended shutdown had they needed to produce a replacement impellor from scratch. In less than one week, NVision scanned the original impellor and provided a computer model of it to the facility, which then used the model to manufacture a duplicate impellor for installation. In the end, only a relatively short shutdown was necessary to accommodate the scanning and reproduction of the impellor.

The turbines that move the water in hydroelectric plants employ massive impellors to get the job done. In this case, one of the facility’s key impellors had suffered damage that forced the facility to replace it. However, the facility did not possess a computer model of the impellor, which was necessary in order to manufacture a replacement. Without a replacement available, the plant was facing an extended shutdown with potentially high losses in time and money.

The facility’s management contacted NVision to produce a computer model of the impellor. Two days after the initial contact, with a refurbished impellor temporarily in use as a replacement, an NVision engineer was on site to scan the impellor using the HandHeld laser scanner.

The HandHeld scanner is attached to a mechanical arm which moves about the object being scanned, freeing the user to capture data rapidly and with a high degree of resolution. An optional tripod provides complete portability in the field. Intuitive software allows full model editing, polygon reduction, and data output to all standard 3D packages.

“The HandHeld laser scanner was perfect for this project because its ability to move freely around a part makes it possible to reverse engineer components of virtually any size and shape," said Colin Ellis, Engineering Manager at NVision. “In this case, the spacing of the blades was large enough for the laser scanning head to fit through.”

Scanning took eight hours, and included data from three locations situated throughout the part, with data being indexed into the same coordinate system using geometric features. After the data was collected and processed into an STL mesh, a SolidWorks model was created in two days. The facility received the completed model of the impellor just six working days after first calling NVision with their problem. The computer model was used to manufacture an exact duplicate of the original impellor.

“By using laser scanning to reverse engineer the impellor the facility was able to avoid a lengthy and costly shutdown,” said Ellis. “As a side benefit of the scanning, we found that the impellor being used as a replacement was greatly out of balance, with no easy way of manually checking the part to see where the problem lay. Fortunately, using our inspection software, we were able to rotate and compare the data virtually, allowing precise indication of problem areas.”

For more information, visit: www.nvision3d.com

NVision, Inc.'s Engineering Service Division is now offering product defect analysis, which can potentially be introduced in product liability litigation to prove a manufacturer innocent of producing a defective or harmful product. The company has partnered with Materials Analysis, a Dallas-based engineering firm specializing in litigation support, to provide this service.

"Each year, thousands of product injury lawsuits are filed in the U.S. While it's indisputable that the use of flawed products can result in injury to the consumer, it's equally true that manufacturers are often sued for product "defects" that do not exist, or for defects that occurred after the product left the manufacturing facility," says Steve Kersen, Vice President of Sales and Marketing for NVision. "The precise product geometry we provide with our non-contact scanning services can potentially rule out the theorized cause of an accident and clearly show whether or not an alleged defect actually existed." Scanning also makes it possible to generate electronic solid models of product parts, which are much easier for non-technical people in a courtroom to visualize than blueprints.

To produce a product's geometry, which will later be analyzed by Materials Analysis for possible defects, NVision uses its non-contact MAXOS measurement system and HandHeld Scanner. The HandHeld scanner is a portable device that is capable of capturing 3D geometry from components of virtually any size. It is attached to a mechanical arm that moves about the object, freeing the user to capture data rapidly and with a high degree of resolution. The MAXOS uses a proprietary non-contact probe consisting of a concentrated light that collects individual points at a rate of 100 per second, many times faster than a CMM. The MAXOS provides accuracy of +/- 0.0002" and a resolution between measured points down to 0.00001".

NVision's non-contact measurement and scanning technologies have already provided critical assistance in several product liability cases. In one case, it was necessary to inspect a product defect that had caused a critical component to break and cause an airplane to lose altitude and crash. If the defect was an inclusion in a casting it would indicate a manufacturing defect and would likely be shaped like a stringer or half-ellipse. However, if the defect was a corrosion pit that had occurred long after manufacturing, and had not been properly addressed when the aircraft was last serviced, it would likely be hemispherical in shape.

NVision's Engineering Service Division examined the defect with the MAXOS and HandHeld Scanner and captured the defect's complete geometry, then generated a point cloud consisting of the coordinates of individual points. The technicians used software that comes with the scanner to convert the point cloud to a polygon mesh. They then used reverse engineering software to convert the polygon data to a surface model. They exported the surface model in the STEP format and imported it into computer aided design (CAD) software where they converted it to a solid model.

The solid model clearly showed that the defect was hemispherical and was therefore caused by a servicing problem rather than a manufacturing defect. The manufacturer was thus able to avoid what would undoubtedly have been an expensive settlement. Said Mark Allen Lewis, Staff Engineer for Materials Analysis, "Frankly, NVision's scanning results were almost magic!"

For more information visit: www.nvision3d.com

After experiencing significant frustration and sub-standard scanning results, the NAS contacted NVision, which regularly works with every branch of the U.S. military and specializes in providing scanning solutions and customized, on-site training in the use of laser scanners for reverse engineering. An NVision engineer traveled to the base and spent four days extensively training its personnel on site in the use of laser scanning equipment and software. "Our on-site training with actual parts is one of the reasons why NVision's work with the military continues to grow," says Colin Ellis, Engineering Manager at NVision. "NVision is unique in that we provide full turnkey solutions from start to finish including training instead of having clients purchase separate hardware, software, and training from different places, which happened in this case."

Engineers and machinists at the base regularly need to reverse engineer complex replacement parts for naval aircraft in order to keep the planes and helicopters in peak flying condition. Although this NAS purchased a 3D laser scanner for reverse engineering from another vendor a few years ago, the vendor's lack of a thorough training program limited the ability of its personnel to reverse engineer parts in military aircraft. Sadly, the original training was on parts completely unrelated to those used at an NAS facility and with software not suitable for the station's needs.

The NVision engineer initially had some difficulty using the base's scanning equipment due to its inherent limitations. These issues included a very small laser strip width, tiny stand-off distance, and limited depth of field. Thankfully he was he able to resolve all of the NAS's issues and concerns by providing the facility with two new high-speed portable workstation computers and extensive training on XOR software using the station's own parts and real-world scenarios.

"Fortunately, with NVision's superior level of on-site training and the XOR software, we were able to bring the NAS completely up to speed on reverse engineering their complex parts," says Ellis. "The base now plans to replace their current rudimentary and slow scanner with an NVision high-accuracy and wide-stripe scanner in order to speed up their reverse engineering process even more."

For more information visit: www.nvision3d.com

Thursday, 24 February 2011 10:59

NVision Now Offers Industrial CT Scanning

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NVision's Engineering Service Division is now offering  industrial CT scanning for reverse engineering and full inspection of components.

Industrial CT (Computed Tomography) scanning is a process which utilizes x-ray  equipment to produce 3D representations of both internal and external components.

According to Steve Kersen, NVision's Vice President of Sales and Marketing, "CT scanning is typically utilized when a customer's requirements exceed  the capabilities of laser scanning. For example, it's extremely useful for accurately modeling or inspecting the internal geometry of transparent materials, which  would be obscured for laser scanners, or for detecting hidden flaws in plastic moldings and castings."

The best results from CT scanning can be achieved on non-metallic components  fitting within an envelope of 150mm diameter. Metallic and larger items can  be CT scanned, but the resolution and accuracy decreases. The output received from the CT scanner is a STL (stereo lithography) format  file, which is opened in specialized software for inspection against a CAD file,  or used to create a CAD file in the customer's required native format.

NVision is currently employing CT scanning on a number of projects for customers,  such as small medical components, electronic and fiber optic connectors, and  ceramic components.

For more information visit: www.nvision3d.com

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