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Vision-Based Molding Line Inspection for TK Waupaca

Sept. 5, 2011
FTI to supply Inspectomation to check, correct mold and sand defects
Finishing Technology International has been contracted by ThyssenKrupp Waupaca to supply an inspection system for the vertical molding line at the ferrous foundry group’s Tell City, IN, plant. The patented Inspectomation vision system will be installed within the chamber of the molding machine to check for mold and sand defects and, if necessary, to take corrective action, including real-time decisions on pouring. It will be the first such system installed in North America. Developed by Inspectomation, a German company, the system uses color shadow modulation to achieve the exceptional response time needed for short-cycle production, and it allows continuous visual inspection of the green sand molds. Finishing Technology Intl. LLC is a consortium of five European foundry equipment manufacturers working with a single North American sales organization. The group’s focus is offering cost-cutting products and services for cleaning, finishing, and inspecting castings. In addition to Inspectomation, the group includes Blastman, a developer of robotic air-blast casting cleaning systems; Janke, a manufacturer of hydraulic press and robotic casting trimming and finishing equipment; Reichmann & Sohn, makers of mechanized casting grinding and cut-off machinery; and R. Scheuchl, which provides casting decoring, degating and finishing technology. The start-up at Tell City is scheduled for this fall, FTI said. It added that the installation will promote TK Waupaca’s goal of providing customers with the best product possible, using innovative technology in a “continuous improvement” culture.