General Motors plants worldwide will soon use close-range photogrammetry software to assure specification measurements of automotive tooling equipment. This equipment positions automobile components together during the manufacturing process and must be precisely located for proper assembly.
FotoG, developed by Vexcel Corp., Boulder, Colo., provides accurate measurements based on digital photographs. Reportedly, it is more cost-effective than traditional surveying techniques.
A year ago, GM launched pilot programs of FotoG in its Detroit, Mexico, and Ontario plants. A successful demonstration of the product led the way for the certification for all GM plants.
"A benefit of FotoG is its ability to provide measurements without physical contact," explains Dr. Jason Szabo, Vexcel's manager of close-range photogrammetry.
"This allows measurements to be collected without shutting down a work area, resulting in substantial savings that may otherwise be lost due to a production halt. This same benefit also makes FotoG immune to vibrations — ideal for measuring delicate items that are corrupted by touch."
Measurements taken in the pilot studies averaged 59 min from site setup to final results. Typical accuracies were ±0.00079 in. on objects approximately 10-ft long.
GM uses FotoG close-range photogrammetry software to make 3D measurements of autobody components.