Teratonics pushes forward real-time quality control by providing immediate insight into every part

Combining speed, automation and precision, Teratonics STRIPP Control unleashes for the first time the advantages of 3D Terahertz pulsed imaging on production lines

Teratonics pushes forward real-time quality control by providing immediate insight into every part

3 minutes, 20 secondes

See Through the Matter… This is the solution proposed by Teratonics to the industry for the reduction of its poor-quality costs and for the optimisation of its manufacturing processes. Teratonics STRIPP Control can be directly deployed on a production line to perform 3D measurements and to detect defects in 100% of the production, in a fully automated and Industry 4.0 way. It reveals the invisible inside many electrically non-conductive materials, for example plastics, ceramics, paper, semiconductors… Components can be controlled in their pure form, but also in a heterogeneous state, such as a foamed plastic or a composite. Assemblies between two dielectric units or between a dielectric and a conductive unit can be analyzed in the dielectric volume and in particular in the bonding transition between the two units. Moreover, the powerful depth resolution gives access to thickness, with a micrometer precision that is adapted to many coatings and that can resolve also individual thickness in multilayer coatings.

With the very immediate feedback to the production, bad parts can be sorted out to be scrapped or reworked. Often the production process itself can be optimized to avoid the fabrication of bad parts and to reduce the waste of raw materials, energy, and time. All this helps to reduce the global costs.

Teratonics STRIPP Control system – here implemented at an injection moulding machine for the control of plastic parts, immediately after their fabrication.

This transformation of quality assurance and quality control is enabled by Teratonics’s internationally patented technology: it uses the Terahertz (THz) frequency range – the last part of the electromagnetic spectrum to be exploited in the industry – and allows therefore flexible non-contact analysis, without danger to the health, without the need for radioprotection. Its unique ultra-fast single-shot detection decreases the point measurement time by a factor of about 10,000,000 compared to the state of the art of pulsed THz. 3D imaging of internal structures permitting also precise wall thickness measurement and high probability of defect detection becomes possible in the production cycle time of many industries. This breakthrough THz hardware is complemented by a proprietary software for an automated scan motion and data processing.

As recently demonstrated publicly on the industrial site of our partner Wirth Werkzeugbau GmbH, the system enables fast robotized scanning of complex 3D objects based on their CAD files, with a scanning speed in the order of 1000 cm²/min and more. To the best of our knowledge, this is the fastest pulsed THz imaging solution in the market, and the only one to allow inline control with depth resolved imaging over large part sizes. For many applications, this imaging capacity is a unique feature not only in the THz market but also in the NDT market at large. The measurement method is insensitive to ambient conditions such as temperature, light or vibrations, and supports the analysis of moving parts. The data processing returns images and automated detection of defects suchas, for example, thickness variations and voids.

Currently, with a single robotic device and automated data analysis – without an active operator – a holistic and therefore economical solution is offered to support the transformation of quality control requested by the industry and society. Its impact can go well beyond the reduction of the direct costs of quality and can have positive effects on the environment. The use cases are diverse and come from sectors such as automotive, aerospace, electronics, medical devices, luxury goods: The reduction of raw materials like plastics, paints and solvents by process control is of course advantageous in the industrial perspective as costs are reduced, but also as less material must be moved and recycled. This is of particular interest in the transport industries where energy can be saved. To give further examples, also touching the corporate Health, Safety & Environment: The automated control on a production line can replace visual / manual control by an operator, which is a very monotonous and tiring job prone to human errors. This can also speed-up the production or Maintenance and Repair Operations for industries as the aerospace where the inevitable control step can be the bottleneck of the cycle time. Besides, used as a laboratory device, this breakthrough technology opens the door to innovative technology and scientific developments providing a new way to analyze samples, without cutting or preparing selected regions, also over large extended 3D parts.

In conclusion, Teratonics’s unique pulsed THz approach rapidly gives access to the 3D structure of objects including precise wall thickness measurement and high probability of defect detection. 3D imaging of internal structures becomes possible in the production cycle time of many industries.

Teratonics was also a Startup Booster Finalist at JEC Connect 2021.

More information www.teratonics.com