Volkswagen Group, the world’s largest automobile manufacturer, already uses das-Nano´s technology with its Irys system to measure the layer thickness of its car body coatings.
The images show examples of traditional manual methods that require contact and only measure the total thickness of the whole coating.
One of the problems faced by the automotive sector, as well as others that use multilayer coatings in their manufacturing processes, is that there was no method to measure the coating thickness that meets all the requirements in an industrial environment. They needed a non-destructive, non-contact, fast, robust, automatable system that could measure the thickness of each layer simultaneously and identify defects, work on any type of substrate (metal, plastic, and composite), on flat and curved surfaces, provide real-time data and have a Big Data analysis and visualization platform.
We have developed a non-contact terahertz system for the measurement of paint thicknesses of multilayer structures in the automotive sector. The heart of this system is called das-Nano Irys.
It is a spectrometer that emits a beam of terahertz waves onto a surface, such as a car body. The beam travels through the material, interacts with each of the layers of paint that cover it, and is subsequently reflected and picked up by a detector. Information about the electrical properties and thickness of each layer of the coating is extracted from the detected terahertz wave.
Irys has great advantages over other solutions on the market. It is a fully automated, fast, and accurate system that simultaneously measures every single layer of a car body coating, regardless of its substrate material. No calibration stops are required during the measurement, which saves a lot of time.
Work has been carried out in different areas and, in particular, in the development of complex algorithms, based on artificial intelligence, to extract thickness values from terahertz waves. Also, optimizing the hardware of the terahertz system to adapt the technology to the specific needs of inline thickness measurement in car bodies