A developer of bespoke metrology systems for the orthopaedics industry has introduced two new products: a taper measurement gauge to ensure that tolerances are met and a part identification gauge to verify that the correct parts have been packaged together.
Tapers on implants are stringently controlled with tolerances as low as 10 microns. Coordinate measuring machines (CMMs) and air gauges are traditionally used to verify dimensions, but both techniques have drawbacks, according to Trac Measurement Systems Ltd.
The CMM is slow and the capital outlay is considerable; the air gauge, on the other hand, is very quick but cost of ownership is high because of the many masters that are needed. The air gauge also lacks flexibility, notes the company.
The Mechanical Taper Gauge from Trac couples speed—a six second floor-to-floor cycle time for a 30-mm taper—with 1-µ accuracy. The use of analogue scanning provides a wealth of data and has the added advantage of outputting straightness. The system is shop-floor hardened and can reside by the machine tool.
Making the product right is important, but so is packing the right products together. That’s where Trac’s Part Identification Gauge comes in. The company describes the tool as a manufacturer’s last line of defence before shipping products to end users. A common concern among suppliers of orthopaedic products is that mismatched, or differently sized, parts not be packaged together. The Part Identification Gauge combines vision technology with Gauge Xplorer software to identify all components related to hip, knee and shoulder implants, says the company.Norbert Sparrow