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Reducing Automotive Recall Risk*

*Taken from the June 2017 issue of Industrial Technology

Recalls in the automotive industry seem to be on the increase. These occurrences cost volume car makers dear, with millions of vehicles being recalled across the world. One way of reducing the risk in automotive recalls is through accurate product traceability.

Laser Part Marking

Part marking for traceability

Laser based part marking is the traceability solution of choice with the automotive supply chain as it is ideally suited to marking the vast majority of materials used within the industry. However, no matter how high the laser’s marking quality, more important still is ensuring that the correct marks are applied in the right position on the correct part variant and on a part that is non-defective. If these objectives are met, scrapping levels are dramatically reduced and productivity and efficiency increased significantly.

Safety and Traceability

A unique and innovative closed loop machine vision and laser solution from our product partners, FOBA, contributes to increased product safety and lower product recalls. Provided as a completely integrated solution within the laser system, IMP (Intelligent Mark Positioning) ensures consistent and correct marking. The system carries out pre- and post-marking optimal validation as part of a closed-loop marking process.

Part Verification

Prior to marking, the system performs a part validation check to ensure that the part to be marked is the correct variant. This is followed by a post-verification check making sure that the part has not been marked previously. The automatic mark alignment function is then used to check the position of the mark relative to the position of the to-be marked component. Only when these checks are completed satisfactorily is the laser mark produced.

Once marked, the post-marking verification stage validates that the laser marks are exactly as they should be, checking for positioning, alignment and size. Optical character verification (OCV) then validates that every character marked matches the required content.

Unique Process

This unique three stage process combined with the IMP system ensures the highest levels of process reliability and, more significantly, delivers zero defect marks. It makes a crucial contribution to guaranteeing quality assurance and helps to ensure a “no fault forward” manufacturing process.

For further details about FOBA’s patented vision system (IMP), please contact