Laser system used for quality control of London trains

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Two rail services are employing laser measurement systems for quality inspection during the production of new high-capacity trains being introduced in London.

Global transport firm Bombardier is using Third Dimension’s laser measurement system, GapGun, to assist in quality inspection for the production of 66 train carriages - on order for Transport for London’s Elizabeth line service - and is now planning to use the system on 45 carriages for the LoTrain project for London Overground.

They are being used to build the transport manufacturer’s new Aventra electric multiple unit passenger trains, which will deliver a significant increase in capacity for London rail passengers.

GapGun provides potential savings of millions of pounds to Bombardier by enabling more efficient quality checking along the length of the production line.

Operation quality manager, Colin Mellor commented: 'Since we started using the GapGun we have been able to speed up the production process and check each part as we go along, meaning we can head off problems before they arise.'

The new trains are being manufactured and assembled at Bombardier’s plant in Derby, and the GapGun system is being used to check components and the gaps, flush and radius of panels before and after being fitted.

The handheld and non-contact system provides a range of profile measurement capabilities that use optical triangulation to measure gaps, shapes and forms, quickly and accurately.

'The GapGun completely removes ambiguity and subjectivity. We can also use the... data the GapGun records to predict problems before they even happen,' Mellor added. 'It accurately measures flush and radius of features, which can drastically reduce the costs of having to make corrections at the end of the production process.'