EBCC located in Wrocław, Poland was established in the early 1960s and since 1999 has been specializing in aluminum castings production. The company produces about 6.5 million aluminum brake calipers annually, which makes it the second-largest producer in Europe. EBCC is part of the ACE group established in 2006 which activity is concentrated in three operating companies: Fuchosa located in Spain and focused on casting of iron components. Feramo, an iron foundry located in the Brno, Czech Republic and EBCC. The ACE group main customers include the largest European suppliers of brake modules such as Continental Teves, TRW Automotive and Robert Bosch, and products are installed in the majority of automobiles produced in Europe.
White Light Metrology Shining Through
EBCC which specializes in gravity casting using aluminum alloys selected a Cognitens Optigo system for supporting dimensional quality inspection and reverse engineering in its facility. The complex production process involving mould making, automated foundry line, 5 axes machining centres and advanced forming simulations calls for process and quality control in order to achieve high quality.
The Cognitens White light technology was preferred by for various 3D measurement and digitizing applications including qualifying parts and tools and enhancing future product design.
Quality – A Strategic Priority
Maintaining the highest quality is a strategic element in the EBCC policy. This is achieved, among others, by controlling the physical and chemical, mechanical and dimensional parameters at each stage of the production process. In order to enhance product quality and accelerate first article production, EBCC decided to equip its quality control department with Cognitens Optigo 200 DI system.
After a technical evaluation of the Optigo system capabilities, EBCC engineers determined that it would be highly instrumental for supporting:
- Prototype development using sand moulds
- Casting mould equipment build
- Measurement and qualification of parts for production
- Quality assurance on production batches
- Generating STL (polygon mesh) outputs for engineering studies, reverse engineering and digital archiving operations.
Based on their successful experience using Optigo, Fuchosa (EBCC’s sister company in the ACE group and a long time Cognitens customer) advised EBCC on how fully leverage the systems capabilities in their key applications.
Precise 3D Measurement in Aluminum Foundry
“Thanks to Optigo we can easily do full 3D surface analysis which is especially important for qualifying casting dimensional quality”, said Mr. Szczerbik Marek, EBCC's quality manager. “We’re using Optigo for inspecting parts and tools and comparing them to nominal. Optigo’s 3D Colormap and 2D cross section tools have proven valuable for our quality and formability analysis studies”.
Using Optigo’s Mapped Space technology, EBCC inspect parts of up to 500X500 mm using a customized tool without applying photogrammetry targets on the castings. This reduces the measurement preparation time to minimum and allows EBCC to produce inspection reports within minutes.
Faster Time to First Article
“Optigo proved its value for measuring casting die components and analyzing digital assembly interfaces and dimensions of internal chambers. Optigo helps us solve problems faster and shorten the time to produce a first article” said Szczerbik Marek.
In addition to various dimensional inspection applications, EBCC also makes use of their Optigo system to produce high quality 3D digitized models from actual parts and tools. Using the Optigo - PolyWorks™ integration EBCC automatically generate polygon mesh (STL) models and conduct reverse engineering operations. The produced point cloud and polygonal models are used for advanced formability studies and for closing the loop with product design.