Keeping The F-18 Flying

How the NavAir Advanced Measurement Systems and Reverse Engineering Lab Keeps F-18's FlyingCalled the birth place of naval aviation, the United States Naval Base at Coronado Island, San Diego, CA (NBC) provides a shore-based platform for 16 helicopter squadrons, 2 fixed wing squadrons, two aircraft carriers, four SEAL (Sea, Air, Land) Teams, Navy Expeditionary Combat Command squadrons, and other air, surface and subsurface commands. The huge base is also home to the Fleet Readiness Center Southwest (FRCSW), which overhauls, repairs, and modifies Navy and Marine Corps front line tactical, logistical, and rotary-wing aircraft and their components. FRCSW airc...

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Computer Aided Inspection

Closing the Loop On Digital Manufacturing Workflow, While Moving Toward a Model-Based Definition EnvironmentConmputer Aided Inspection (CAI) software helps CAD, GD&T (Geometric Dimensioning and Tolerancing datums), and measuring devices work together to ensure design intent, and eliminate the need for 2D inspection drawings, while closing the loop on digital workflow. These are all important considerations when moving towards a ModelBased Definition (MBD) environment. CAD-Based inspection is a good first step toward achieving a complete MBD environment. The central concept of MBD is that a 3D CAD model provides all product information needed for all a...

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Portable CMMs Go to Inspection Source

Quality Magazine cover story, November 2010 Discover how rapid shop floor inspection makes quick work of Quality. By Ron Branch  For the machine shop that supplies the aerospace industry, portable coordinate measuring machine (PCMM) and model based definition (MBD) are everyday terms that are integral parts of its daily inspection routines. In the effort to drive quality and control processes, aerospace OEMs have altered the inspection methodology and the tools of their entire supply chain. Many of these suppliers are small- or mid-sized machine shops that have invested in inspection hardware, software and processes to satisfy strict quality s...

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Powering Up an Age Old Design

Reverse Engineering Helps Power Companies Generate Up To 15% More PowerVerisurf Software helps power companies reverse engineer steam turbine rotor assemblies to support new and improved bladding. Southern California Edison, GE, Alstom, Siemens, Mitsubishi and Toshiba have all used Verisurf Software to create "as built" CAD models of existing rotor assemblies. Why go to all that trouble you might ask? After 130 years, steam turbines are still a wonderful and powerful design generating approximately 90% of the electrical power in the United States.  Most of the steam turbine power plants in use today around the world were built over 60 years ago, long before CAD ...

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Scan It, Build It

When Gabe Draguicevich was asked to help fabricate a titanium hip implant based on CT (computed tomography, also known as CAT) scan data, he had to coordinate numerous technologies to complete the project. Because the CT data consisted of 2-D cross-sections, Draguicevich had to stack and align the individual scans to create a 3-D model, which he used to create a polygonal mesh in the form of a stereolithography (STL) file. After creating a prototype, he had to verify it against the original scan data, which was no mean feat considering that software capable of providing deviation analysis of the model surface to the STL file did not exist. Finally, Draguic...

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