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Position: SouVR >> CaseStudy >> Successful Story >> Detail

3D Quality inspection and race car dimension measurement in Formula 1

frank/Editor  From:aicon3d  Hit:  2014-11-20

3D Quality inspection and race car dimension measurement in Formula 1

Exciting overtaking maneuvers, best lap times, enthusiastic fans and cutting edge technology on the race track: that’s Formula 1™. This is where product quality is measured in milliseconds!

The time factor is not only of prime importance during the actual race, but also with regard to the preparation phase prior to each racing season: As the number of test days in Formula 1™ is strictly limited, the objective is to accomplish the development and production of a race car in record-breaking time. To achieve exactly that, Pierluca Magaldi, Head of Quality Assurance of the Italian Formula 1™ team Torro Rosso, enters the breuckmann naviSCAN system into the race. This is the system chosen by the Scuderia to conduct the three-dimensional quality control of their production molds and car components; in addition, it is used to measure the dimensions of the complete race car. Within only a few minutes, the scanning system delivers all required data together with the respective evaluations; all relevant information for potential adjustments and changes is made immediately available.

Objective and measuring object

The project consists of two main aspects: On the one hand, different production molds and carbon fiber car components are being digitized in a time-saving manner and at highest accuracy. Directly subsequent is the comparison of the measurement data produced by this areal measuring approach with the CAD model in order to swiftly and easily identify and visualize any deviations.

On the other hand, certain predefined points of the complete race car are measured by tactile approach in order to ensure that the Formula 1™ regulations are precisely adhered to. The measuring objects vary in dimension from a few centimeters all the way up to several meters; in some cases, the Surfaces of the objects are black and shiny.

Measuring system and setup

Given the requisite of top precision and flexibility, together with the requirement to avoid the time-consuming attachment and calibration of reference markers, Pierluca Magaldi of the Scuderia Toro Rosso has opted for the only feasible solution available on the market: the breuckmann top of the range system naviSCAN.

This combination of the breuckmann high-performance white-light scanner with a portable coordinate measuring system, e.g. the MoveInspect of AICON 3D Systems, enables the user to conduct individually customized, highly precise measuring procedures.

By using a tactile measuring probe, the application spectrum of the 3D scanner is further extended into a range allowing a very fast tactile acquisition of even those areas, which are usually very tricky and challenging to access. Boreholes, undercuts, covered areas, and similar object properties can therefore be rapidly and easily captured through tactile approach and then directly incorporated into each specific measuring project of the Scuderia. To examine only singular reference points is equally easily done with the help of the tactile probe, without having to go through the generation of areal measurement data. To couple an areal measuring sensor with a tactile sensor is therefore the ideal combination to conduct very complex scanning tasks at the smallest possible effort.


By combining fringe projection technique with an optical tracking system, it is possible to easily cover even very large-scale measuring areas. The time-consuming attachment and calibration of reference markers is no longer required. In each recording, an area of up to one square meter is being scanned; the assembly of the individual recordings into a 3D model is carried out automatically in the car coordinate system.

The workflow in detail:

1. Measuring setup and digitization

  • Setup of the naviSCAN, the coordinate measuring machine and the measuring object
  • 3D data acquisition of the measuring object with the naviSCAN
  • Areas which are difficult to access are completed by using the measuring probe
  • By combining the two measuring techniques, car components and production molds can be captured by scanner as well as by measuring probe within a single measuring project
  • The measurements are conducted directly in the car coordinate system
  • Inspection with the PolyWorks Inspector™ by InnovMetric Software Inc.

    2. Quality inspection

  • Determination of the relevant inspection parameters according to defInition (regular geometry properties, cross-sections, scaling)
  • Nominal / actual comparison (false color mapping)
  • Automatic reporting by generation of measuring protocols and ARChiving are conducted automatically within a matter of a few minutes
  • The evaluated measuring data provide the optimization of the production molds and car components


    The Scuderia Toro Rosso has chosen to use a breuckmann naviSCAN for the digitization of the production molds and car components of their Formula 1™ racing cars. Using this system allows to capture of even very large-scale and shiny Surfaces at very high speed and accuracy without the time consuming preparation with reference markers. Despite very large data volumes, the measurement results are directly available for any type of quality inspection tasks as well as for the purpose of controlling and ensuring the race car meets the regulation dimensions.

  • Compared to other types of 3D scanning systems and because of operating by combining two metrology techniques, the naviSCAN is able to deliver conclusive measuring results in a significantly faster and simpler manner, allowing for them to be immediately integrated into the production optimization process: The breuckmann naviSCAN for the quickest way to the finish line — both with regard to quality inspection as well as the Formula 1™ World Championship!

    We would like to express our appreciation to the Scuderia Toro Rosso for the friendly and successful cooperation and extend our best wishes for continued success in the future!

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