New PKYK technology based in acoustic detection of connectors
Publication Date: 2014-Oct-27
The IP.com Prior Art Database
Page 01 of 2
Intelligent Acoustic Solution for Electrical Connections
The importance of controlling the quality of the product is well known in the automotive industry, where one single defect can lead to severe losses, security problems and to a serious damage of the company's reputation. Furthermore, this produces a lack of customer satisfaction, i.e. a loss of competitive advantage in comparison to the company's competitors. The wrong assembly of pieces in the vehicle is one of the main sources of defects in the final product. It is mainly executed by people, thus introducing the human error factor in the process. This is why the development of mistake‐proofing devices (Poka‐Yoke) has dramatically increased in the last few years, with the aim to control the assembly process in a better way. Nowadays the state‐of‐the‐art in Poka‐Yoke systems is limited to mechanical, pneumatic and artificial vision systems, not allowing for the supervision every single operation of the assembly process.
A new acoustic‐based Poka‐Yoke system is proposed in order to detect the sound signal produced by the mechanical action of the assembly of pieces provided with quick connectors. This way, the product quality is assured in production processes where acoustic signals are the only way to know whether the assembly is correctly done or not.
Quick connectors are used in multiple points among the assembly of a vehicle, they are used in almost 700 connections; this connectors simplify the wiring procedure in the assembly line. In the other hand quick connectors have a drawback, the difficulty for automatic inspection of the process. This invention aims to solve that problem. Following design recommendations, quick connectors produce a "click" sound when they are properly connected which confirms that connection has been done, and at the same time produce a non‐return latch to avoid unexpected connector removal. This sound is perfectible by "ear" and it can be measured in order to ensure the connection through automatic inspection.
Schematic of PKYK installation
The system reads the information of the next pieces that should be mounted by the worker. The information of those pieces is stored in a queue. At the same time, when a piece arrives to the worker, the information of this piece is recovered from the queue and shown to the worker in a screen while the system initializes the sound acquis...