2D Altimeters Ready for Industry 4.0

The 2D digital altimeters proposed by Sermac highlight the advantages which can be obtained thanks to the addition of a second dimension: fast and accurate control of numerous measurements, reduction of costs on parts and time and more

The new line of digital altimeters with 2D electronics from the Italian brand TRC, exclusively represented and distributed by Sermac, was created in partnership with a well-known Swiss research centre specialising in metrology. This new family of products represents the perfect combination of Swiss precision and Italian flexibility, as it has been designed for use both in workshops and testing departments.

The evolution towards 2D applications

As the word suggests, altimeters are measuring instruments used in production processes to measure heights of mechanical parts. Among the basic functions in 1D models, the ones most commonly used, are the measurement of heights on a single vertical axis of the parts to be checked, for example to measure distances, diameters and wheelbases. Thanks to the continuous technological development in an Industry 4.0 perspective of new control methods, and of the necessary quality certifications requested by the market on supplies, altimeters have evolved with 2D models which, by effectively adding a second dimension to their original use, open up a very different, high quality world for controls on production batches. The functionalities offered are remarkable and allow measurements in two dimensions, of the positioning between the controlled targets, statistical or programming control measurements as well as perpendicularity, angle, flatness, statistical printouts and reports, data transfer and so on. With TRC 2D digital altimeters it is possible to validate in production the phase advances of batches of parts, with more complete measurements, reducing the time to market.

For a more efficient production

“We note positively the trend towards bringing metrology closer to the production cycle, unlike a few years ago, when some instruments were typically located inside a controlled metrology room,” Alberto Gillio Tos, director of Sermac, declared. “This trend does not end here, but also carefully researches the business interconnection aspects. A 2D altimeter, like ours and ready for Industry 4.0, becomes an integral part of a phase in the machining of the part, and contributes to reducing control times and costs.”

Obtaining an accurate and fast measurement in a production environment is a reality of Industry 4.0 which makes a company competitive on an international level. The 2D altimeters, which can be used alongside machine tools on special control benches, allow more efficient production with a reduction in costs of parts and time; in production, measurement, control, possible correction of deviations in the machining phase and so on are all competitive advantages with high added value.

Simple and complete control of numerous measurements

The 2D digital altimeter enables the control of numerous measurements. With the new TRC4002D and TRC7002D models, for example, it is possible to measure heights, thicknesses and vertical series measurements, maintaining absolute dimensional zero and distance from the last measurement with list results and allowances highlighted in colour. For diameters, both external and internal, measurement is easy. The instrument’s manual mode for micrometric positioning of the probe with a specially designed crank allows the part to be moved laterally to overcome the reversal points indicated by audible and visual signals. The user is thus precisely guided during diameter measurement. The large display offers a high degree of graphical possibilities. 2D measurements can be displayed in a very convenient format. Even for 2D measurements, the operations are easy to perform: the part is measured as usual, then rotated and measured again on the second axis. The results appear immediately on the screen in two dimensions. Another example is the measurement of parts in series, where an automatic dimensioning program is created from a sample part. The final statistical analysis is carried out directly by the software. All results can be retrieved from the display or exported to a PC via USB or RS232, saved on a USB stick or in the control unit itself.

Large display and high ergonomics

The TRC 2D altimeters have an innovative control unit and software. The large, tablet-like touch screen display offers comfortable reading thanks to its excellent brightness and resolution (IPS panel). Ergonomics is uncompromising as the display can be rotated in any direction. Ergonomics, button positions, colours and menus are simple and straightforward. Features worth mentioning include: battery autonomy of up to 20 hours; intuitive touch screen interface with 2D electronics designed to facilitate two-dimensional measurement operations; exclusive “Fast Diameters” technology for fast measurement execution; dual-value display for simultaneous viewing of diameter and wheelbase; statistical analysis; on-line help; temperature compensation; electronic N-force adjustment on a 4-level scale (from 0.75 to 1.5 N); automatic calculations and selectable zero point.

Main technical features

The TRC4002D and TRC7002D models have a resolution of 1/10th of a micron, and the measuring ranges available are 400 and 700 mm respectively. The cart is fitted with a double connection, allowing the measuring range to be extended to 719 and 1,023 mm. The wide range of usable probes allows a range of lengths up to 400 mm, and setting up is quick and easy thanks to an integrated balancing system. Accuracy is 4.5 and 6 microns with repeatability of 2 microns on the radius.

The construction quality of the compact, sturdy and ergonomic structure ensures maximum stability in the use of the instrument and high vibration dampening thanks to the stabilised cast iron base. The lightening system of the unit by means of an integrated air cushion and a frontal handle ensures a rapid and controlled movement. The micrometric movement of the probe is manual, and is also suitable for high-precision measurements of small parts. The line of new TRC 2D altimeters includes many optional accessories, offered in kit form or loose to enable customisation of the measurement set.