Manufacturing AUTOMATION

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NGen supports advanced end-of-line testing system project with investment funds


May 10, 2022  by Manufacturing AUTOMATION

Next Generation Manufacturing Canada (NGen) announced that it is offering investment support of $250,000 for a project led by Kepstrum (Toronto, Ontario) and its partners Stackpole (Mississauga, Ont.) and Armo-Tool (London, Ont.).

The consortium will build an advanced end-of-line tester for Stackpole’s bushing components, which are a critical subcomponent of their hydraulic powertrain solutions.

NGen explained in a statement that in the Canadian automotive manufacturing industry, manual end-of-line test-to-pass is a commonly used practice that is blind to manufacturing processes and their day-to-day variations. Manufacturers have been receiving higher recalls due to unidentified product failures during production. Additionally, with the constant change in vehicle electrification, automotive manufacturing companies have to develop new components without the historical iterations for reference.

“NGen’s mission is to enable collaboration to build world-leading advanced manufacturing capabilities in Canada,” said Jayson Myers, CEO of NGen. “This partnership between Kepstrum, Stackpole and Armo-Tool is a great example of how we can collaborate to deploy cutting edge innovations that benefit all partners and scale new technologies in real-world manufacturing environments.”

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The new system being built will use the analytical algorithms, developed in the prior feasibility study, in order to correlate the gap-to-failure of parts that passed the end-of-line production test system to variation in material properties and critical manufacturing parameters in the manufacturing process. The pilot system will also be able to perform design limit tests as an end-of-line batch testing. This advanced multi-functional end-of-line tester can detect compound production deficiencies which are not detected by current uncorrelated and parallel production quality control processes.

“We are again excited to utilize Kepstrum’s unique engineering methodology and software to now link manufacturing influences with functional performance test sequences to perform physics-based life assessments,” said Richard Muizelaar, director of research and innovation at Stackpole – Fluid Power Solutions.

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