US-based supplier of high-quality inspection, levelling and calibration equipment, Fowler High Precision, has introduced the world’s first truly portable direct computer control coordinate measuring machine (DCC CMM), the zCAT.
The zCAT is the only CMM on the market that can take automated, repeatable measurements whilst being entirely portable. The lightweight device has been designed to ensure flexibility, ease of use and accuracy for use in various manufacturing processes.
Direct computer control (DCC) sets the zCAT apart from other portable devices on the market as it allows the operator to teach the machine what they want to measure and enable it to take over.
The device was created by Homer Eaton who invented the articulated arm, after he found himself looking for a way of bringing a highlt accurate, yet simple and portable measurement system to the manufacturing market.
The zCAT stands 620 mm tall and 420 mm wide with a 172-mm-diameter base. A rotary encoder in the base supports 360-degree rotation, allowing parts to be nested around the device’s perimeter and measured all at once.
The completely wireless zCAT is powered by a 10.8 volt lithium ion battery that provides enough energy for up to 4 hours of use in the field before needing a charge. In addition, WiFi capabilities let the zCAT automatically and wirelessly transfer data to a PC in whatever format the user requires, including an Excel spreadsheet.
The device also features an intuitive icon-driven touchscreen and built-in ControlCAT geometric measurement software. This enables users to take simple measurements within 15 minutes of training and put together more complicated programs within a couple of hours. To expand measurement capabilities and lower training time even further, an optional zCAT MK4 3D measurement software is available as well and includes free upgrades and zero licensing fees.
Fowler High Precision is currently taking orders for the zCAT which shipment expected to begin next month.