Glasstech: revolutionary automotive glass inspection system

The new system lowers gauging costs while providing more capability over existing technologies

The automotive industry’s quality requirements for glass have increased significantly over the last decade. Glass shape measurement has evolved from perimeter glass support fixtures with ten to twenty interior measurement points to glass measurement fixtures with hundreds of measurement points. In addition, some automotive manufacturers are specifying that transmitive and reflective optics be objectively measured instead of subjectively evaluated.

The increased quality expectation has led to increasingly complex and costly gauging systems that can exceed 100,000 USD per fixture. It has also led to large spatial volume equipment to quantify reflective optics that requires minutes to measure a part.

Subsequent to the industry acceptance of Glasstech’s AGI-T™ transmitted optical distortion measurement system, efforts have been focused on developing technology that can measure the entire surface of complex shaped glass with sufficient accuracy and repeatability to gauge glass to industry standards1. In addition, the technology is capable of quantifying the reflective optical characteristics, all on the same system.

This new technology, AGI-G/R™, is capable of measuring typical backlites or windshields as fast as 22 seconds, including glass handling. It can be integrated with AGI-T to provide a complete quality report for a part, including glass shape to design, and both transmission and reflective optical distortion levels.

AGI-G/R requires a glass support structure that integrates the required glass measurement datum and an integrated glass positioner that costs a fraction of current high probe count gauging systems. AGI-G/R can measure glass either horizontally or at installation angle.

Output Report with Superimposed Topographical Off Form Map

AGI-G/R’s output has the basic measurement probe data and Statistical Process Control (SPC) analysis of traditional contact gauges. In addition, a full surface topographical off-form map can be superimposed to provide more part information. This additional information can assist in understanding wiper performance, HUD or other quality attributes to assist the glass fabricator by further enhancing their forming tool or process. Additional output reports can be generated based on industry input.

AGI-G/R measures the glass surface to a level that allows reflective optics to be determined. As an example, AGI-G/R can simulate any grid board reflected off the glass surface. Below is an example of that capability. AGI-G/R can report the local curvature of the glass surface to be compliant with published standards.

Reflective Output Report comparing a simulated grid board and an actual photograph

AGI-G/R revolutionizes glass inspection by:

  • Lowering the cost to gauge parts by replacing multiple probe checking systems with a much lower cost glass support structure and eliminating the multiple probe’s ongoing maintenance cost.
  • Providing more meaningful shape information that can be used to improve operations.
  • This single system can be used for the measurement of shape and reflective optics.
  • It can be integrated into a production line or used in a laboratory setting.

Contact Glasstech to learn more about this exciting new technology. A production system is installed within Glasstech’s R&D facility to demonstrate this revolution in glass quality measurement.

Footnote:

  1. Automotive Industry Action Group, Measurement System Analysis, 4th edition