QUAH Beng Chieh,
Head of Marketing (Asia Pacific),
Could you brief us about FARO?
Founded in 1981, FARO is the world’s most trusted source for 3D measurement, imaging and realization technology. The company develops and manufactures leading edge solutions that enable high-precision 3D capture, measurement and analysis across a variety of industries including manufacturing, construction, engineering, and public safety.
Can you share about details on the functionality of FARO technologies especially into the welding and fabrication segment?
FARO’s full portfolio of 3D measurement hardware and software provides turnkey solutions for manual and automated inspection and actionable analysis of any part, component, or final assembly, to streamline and maximize efficiencies across the manufacturing process. With the improvements in tool manufacturing standards and testing methods; highly accurate and reliable inspection checks in almost every part of the process has become essential, including the welding and fabrication industry. Some applications that the welding and fabrication segment might find useful include dimensional analysis, CAD-based inspection, non-contact inspection, and alignment.
An example of a business that yielded better welding performance with FARO’s solutions is MH Robot & Automation Co. Ltd, a Chinese systems integrator. With FARO’s support, the company managed to enhance the precision and stability of its welding and assembly equipment systems, as well as improve the overall precision of its production line and conveyor systems.
Any specific technology designed by FARO for the welding and fabrication industry?
Several FARO solutions are well suited for the 3D measurement requirements within the welding and fabrication industry. For example, the FARO® Cobalt Array Imager is a metrology-grade non-contact scanner equipped with dedicated on-board processors – an industry first. The smart sensor allows unique multi-imager array configurations, enabling industrial manufacturers to significantly improve productivity and operations in a way never before possible. An unlimited number of 3D imagers can be placed in array configurations virtually anywhere in a manufacturing process – all scanning simultaneously and controlled by a single computer.
Apart from that, our latest FARO®Quantum series delivers maximum measurement performance and consistency for contact and non-contact requirements in every working environment. The welding and fabrication industry can rely on the Quantum for inspection and quality control, as well as added capabilities like point cloud comparison with CAD, rapid prototyping, reverse engineering, and 3D modeling of free-form surfaces. In addition, the FARO® TracerM3D laser projection technology can be used within the welding and fabrication industry to aid with part positioning and assembly, as well as visual verification.
What is the role of FARO® Focus Laser Scanner into metal, welding, and fabrication industry?
The FARO® Focus Laser Scanner Series enables the users to capture accurate measurements of complex objects and buildings in a quick, straightforward manner. For metal, welding, and fabrication applications, the Focus Laser Scanner offers highly accurate non-contact scanning even for hot forging inspections, allowing users to improve the quality of their products and boost productivity at any stage in a manufacturing process. FARO’s solutions — including the Cobalt Array Imager, Quantum series ScanArms, and TracerM 3D laser projectors—help businesses improve the quality of the product during the inspection process, which leads to a reduction in rework and increased throughput and ROI.
Any recent project wherein the FARO technology has been used at its best?
Tokai Engineering (India) is a specialist toolmaker that supplies a wide variety of welding accessories, equipment, tables, and fixtures; complete with hydraulics, pneumatics and programmable logic controller (PLC) systems. Part of Tokai’s state-of-the-art manufacturing unit is a high precision, portable coordinate measurement machine (CMM) – the FaroArm. The measurement arm allows Tokai to confidently verify that its products are within tolerance.
The FaroArm’s high levels of precision and user-friendliness increased the productivity for Tokai in multiple ways. For instance, having replaced traditional hand tools with the FaroArm, Tokai achieves higher accuracy levels in its inspections and dimensional calculations, providing tighter tolerances on their jigs and fixtures. In addition, as a portable device, the arm can be deployed right where production takes place, withstanding harsh conditions yet still providing precision measurement results. This is in contrast with fixed CMMs that require a controlled environment in order to function accurately.
Can you please elaborate on FARO® Freestyle3D Scanner and FARO® QuantumS FaroArm®?
The FARO® Freestyle3D Scanner is another solution suitable for metal scanning. It is a high-precision handheld scanner that quickly and reliably documents the objects in 3D and creates high-definition point clouds. The handheld 3D scanner maximizes user’s productivity — offering fast data acquisition, real-time visualization, and the largest scan volume on the market.
With its lightweight carbon fiber body, the handheld scanner is highly mobile and it boasts the ability to perform scans in tight and hard-to-reach areas or around corners where there is limited visibility. Equipped with a memory-scan technology, the Freestyle3D allows users to pause and resume scanning at any time, and also possesses an auto leveling function for greater precision in measurement.
Earlier this year, we introduced the FARO® QuantumS FaroArm — the latest member of our best-selling product line — to the market globally. With this launch, FARO extended its leadership in value and performance for manufacturing inspections by offering best-in-class performance and durability, enhanced ergonomics, and extreme portability.
The QuantumS passed both ISO 10360 -12:2016 certification (the most rigorous international measurement quality standard in existence) and International Electrical Commission IEC 60068 -2 standards for shock, vibration and temperature stress relief. Apart from its exceptional ruggedness, the QuantumS also delivers maximum measurement consistency and improves end-user productivity by capturing more data in richer detail with the FAROBluTM Laser Line Probe HD.
Equipped with advanced man-machine interface and enhanced ergonomics, the QuantumS is a virtual extension of the human arm and enables up to 15% less effort and fatigue for the operator. This dramatic increase in both comfort and portability increases operator productivity by facilitating continuous use over extended periods during the workday.
Last but not least, the QuantumS advances the concept of true portability and ensures additional floor reach by up to 40%. Advanced wireless capability ensures that the reliability of cable-free scanning and probing is comparable to scanning and probing with a cable attachment. Furthermore, the availability of dual, hot swappable batteries supports continuous operation anywhere.
FARO is one of the leading players in the 3D measurement industry. How do you think the global 3D market scenario is doing currently?
According to Report Linker, the 3D metrology market is forecasted to grow from ~$11.3 billion in 2017 to ~$17.0 billion by 2023, at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 7.10 per cent between 2017 and 2023. Asia Pacific continues to grow at a maximal rate, which is likely due to the high economic increase in countries such as China and India. The 3D measurement industry is a competitive market and requires constant innovation to stay ahead of the competition. As a result, emphasis on research and develop is paramount, and is the very core of FARO’s existence and it is one of our top priorities.
How has been the Indian market for FARO? What are the major challenges and how do you overcome them?
India is one of the fastest growing economies in Asia. With the India government pushing for infrastructure investments, the immediate future is bright for companies operating in the industrial manufacturing and construction segments. Additionally, with the ‘Make in India’ program firmly in place, India is reforming to become the third largest global economy by 2030. For these reasons, we continue to see India as a key part of FARO’s business, and our three offices in New Delhi (India head office), Chennai, and Pune are prepared to offer comprehensive support to our customers in this region.
We observe that the Indian manufacturing industry is maturing, and companies have become more discerning. Increasingly, manufacturers are adopting higher standards and demanding greater precision and speed in their operations, especially for inspections and quality checks. To support customers in this regard, FARO continues to invest in its R&D activities to develop even more innovative and high performing measurement technologies. We also frequently gather feedback from customers at trade events – which directs our R&D projects. India is an important market to FARO, and we remain committed to the manufacturers here, supporting them with our advanced metrology technologies.
Your future plans?
In 2018, FARO will continue to introduce high-precision portable solutions to more customers, so as to assist them in moving up the technology ladder and improving their productivity and efficiency. Our R&D team will continue to work on innovating new solutions to address industrial manufacturers’ real, felt needs, and we will launch them as soon as they are ready.