The Blue Series

The blue Series is a family of 3D laser vision cameras

  • LightBlue - camera for laser positioning (Red laser) (Available mow)

  • SkyBlue - camera for arc welding seam tracking (Red laser) (Available now)

  • SmartBlue - camera for inspection of weld tracks and surfaces (Red Laser) and ultrasonic transducer (Q2 2021-Q3 2021)

  • DeepBlue - camera for underwater inspection and welding. Up to 100m depth in saline water. Or a very DeepBlue for 1000-1500m depth. (Green Laser) (Q4 2021)

  • OfflineBlue - a virtual machine which can simulate the behaviour of all Blue series real devices. It allow and accept series of images for reprocessing in a loop and can deliver real results useful for track analyses or integration to a system without real hardware. (Available now)

  • WideBlue - camera for measurement and tracking of objects to big distances (1m). Variants for extrawater (Red Laser) and underwater (Green Laser) are planed.(Q1 2022)


When is Laser Vision camera needed?

Most problems with robotic arc welding can be attributed to welded part and their fixture variability, which causes the weld joint to vary in location or fit up. This variation causes both productivity and quality problems.

In arc welding, if joint repeatability of ±0.5 mm cannot be held, then joint finding or joint tracking needs to be considered. This equipment can then be specified, placed in simulation to verify access and cycle-time effects, and integrated correctly into the complete robot cell.

Laser Vision Camera Basics

The technology used for joint tracking and weld inspection cameras is based on the principle of laser triangulation. A relatively low-power laser beam (up to 50mW) is projected on the surface of the part and the reflected scattered light is imaged back onto a CCD or CMOS sensor. The controller then extracts signals from the image that can be used for either joint tracking or weld inspection purposes

Steps in welding process

Pre-production

Pre-production can be used to track the joint and measure the location and fitup variance. Toolmakers can use this information to adjust the fixture clamping to close gaps and get the joint location to repeat. The data can even be used to tell if the detail parts are being correctly made. Without this information, it is tough to determine the root cause of the problems.

Real-Time Finding and Tracking

After parts and fixtures are optimized, the laser vision cameras used for finding and tracking will continue to maintain proper torch position and can allow the operator to select appropriate adaptive weld schedules to compensate for even larger variation. Of course, if the variation becomes excessive, no weld schedule change will be enough to maintain minimum weld quality.

Quality Inspection

After welding is finished it is important in some critical applications to verify quality of the weld and do corrections or rejection of the piece if quality is not satisfactory. This process can be executed with similar measurement principle like the seam finding and tracking camera. In addition special mesurements have to be executed to support real quality inspection. One importan tool for that is the ultrasonic tranceducer probe which executs in addition to surface qualification an inside weld analizes for cracks and hollows.

Selection table for Blue series products