Taunton, UK -- Scantron Industrial Products Ltd, a UK-based supplier of non-contact laser-based scanning and measuring systems, has developed the MasterTrak System specifically for use on continuous insulation panel and board production lines.
Scantron says Proscan MasterTrak delivers continuous, in-line monitoring of panel thickness, width and profile, using the latest laser sensors to "generate exceptional accuracy without contacting the panel surface." The operator interface provides real-time measurement and trend graphing, with alerts for out-of-control or out-of-tolerance conditions, says the company.
This helps improve yield in two ways, the company explains: firstly, at a changeover, production typically sets physical parameters (height, speed) on the production line, yet still has to wait until the first parts are measured at the end of the line before starting a batch. With MasterTrak, the dimensions are available as soon as the uncut panel is formed. Operators know with confidence that their set-up is accurate so they can achieve full speed more rapidly.
Secondly, during a batch, MasterTrak can identify trends as well as sudden changes which might lead to control limit or tolerance breaches. These might otherwise go unnoticed until the end of the batch is tested, and then the whole batch would have to be checked individually. In this way, MasterTrak can help avoid making scrap and second-quality panels.
Statistics are logged to give genuine Cp and Cmk figures (stastitical process control parameters on deviation from the norm), so that decisions about making panels to a new, tighter specification can be made with less commercial risk, Scantron said.
Closed-loop feedback control is available to automatically regulate the process line parameters, so helping to reduce human intervention and improve process capability further.