Automotive

Instrument Cluster Inspection

Vision systems inspect instrument clusters, meet cycle-time requirements

Instrument Cluster Inspection

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The appliqué, a plastic sheet incorporating speedometer and tachometer markings, is a critical element of the instrument cluster. Each appliqué must be clipped and secured into position with high accuracy to tolerate vehicle vibration. If the appliqué moves it could result in incorrect speedometer and tachometer readings. Typically, the position of the appliqué is manually checked by people, but this is not always accurate because people tend to lose concentration and get tired performing this repetitive task.

Ensure Proper Alignment and Fit

Using Cognex In-Sight vision systems for instrument cluster inspection ensures proper alignment and fit. In-Sight vision systems use a geometric pattern matching algorithm called PatMax to search for two plastic tabs on each appliqué. If these tabs are obscured, the appliqué is sitting on top of the clip rather than behind it and is not aligned correctly. PatMax software locates each feature despite any part-to-part variation.

Each part is manually loaded onto a test rig by an operator and then removed once the inspection is complete. Results are viewed on a PC monitor and all the results are sent to a factory data collection system used to monitor performance. Any defective parts are manually removed from the rig once the operator has pressed the ‘reject acknowledgement’ key. The vision inspection takes only 500 milliseconds per part so each part can easily be loaded, inspected and unloaded within the lines’ forty second cycle time. Vision inspection of instrument clusters using In-Sight vision systems and PatMax eliminates assembly errors and part recalls.
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