CMM
Shuttle System

CASE STUDY

A leading manufacturer of mining vehicles wanted to improve efficiency at its North Carolina calibration laboratory.

THE SITUATION

The lab routinely analyzes large metal castings weighing up to 20,000 lbs. each. The facility’s coordinate measuring machine (CMM) is located in a temperature- and humidity-controlled room with a positive-pressure ventilation system. The loading/unloading of the test pallet is performed in an adjoining room with a quick-rollup curtain door to limit exposure to the outside environment. Lab workers needed a way to safely and quickly transport the bulky test articles and pallet from the staging room to the CMM room.

 

 

THE SOLUTION

Custom Designed
Airfloat, in cooperation with the CMM maker, designed and built a custom air-riding shuttle that docks with a pair of large tooling pallets.
How it Works
Once docked, the operator deploys pneumatic lifting beams to lift the 8,000 lb. pallet and test article a centimeter or two off the ground. The operator can then drive the transporter in circles, around corners and other complex movement patterns.
Removable Bridge
Airfloat also provided a removable bridge to allow the transporter to cross an expansion gap between the rooms. The air caster transporter now allows the CMM manufacturer to quickly transport the heavy loads.
The calibration laboratory estimates the Airfloat shuttle system has reduced CMM cycle times by 50-70%.

The Result

The calibration laboratory estimates the Airfloat shuttle system has reduced CMM cycle times by 50-70%. While one loaded pallet is in the CMM room being measured, the second one is unloaded/loaded in a staging area. When the measuring process is complete, the shuttle is used to swap the two tooling pallets, and the process is repeated.

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