The Computer’s Eye – Parts recognition at Porsche

The Computer’s Eye – Parts recognition at Porsche

How are vehicles actually manufactured? What must be taken into account so that these complex systems can guarantee maximum safety and functionality? On a daily basis, we use cars without asking ourselves these very important questions. Processes in the automotive industry have to be carried out very accurately in the shortest possible time to ensure the necessary safety. But how can this be done while working efficiently and saving as much time, costs and effort as possible? At Porsche, a project with VISCOPIC addresses exactly this question. The focus here is on the approach to optimize processes through innovative technologies.

Innovative process optimization – how does it work?

Immersive assistance systems can save time and reduce errors. By means of various technologies such as 3D visualization, AR and VR, computer vision, mobile and web app development, IoT or CAD processing, industrial processes can be optimized and digitized with the support of VISCOPIC. In the four phases of process digitization, the status quo is analyzed, the use case and optimization potential are identified, necessary measures are worked out and a prototype is developed. As an expert in digital solutions, VISCOPIC is able to draw on a wide range of technologies to put together the best possible solution from standard products and individual services. After the implementation of the prototype, user tests are carried out using various methods to obtain information about the added value of the solution. During the subsequent integration of the resulting final scalable software solution, VISCOPIC supports its customers as a direct implementation partner.

Process Optimization in the Porsche Pilot Center

The assembly of a rotor in an electric engine in the automotive industry requires highest accuracy. So-called laminated cores are placed on a shaft. For electromagnetic reasons, there are different ways of assembling the rotor and laminated core packages. The components show the smallest differences, which are difficult to see with the bare eye – the challenge for technicians is therefore to recognize the correct sequence in which the individual parts are to be assembled. 

The Poka Yoke Principle

The ‘Poka Yoke’ system represents a concept for the prevention and avoidance of errors. The Japanese term ‘Poka Yoke’, which can be translated as ‘avoiding unfortunate mistakes’, describes a principle that includes technical precautions for immediate error detection and avoidance.

It is based on the idea that human errors can be avoided from the outset by the way the system that is used operates. An example of this is an ATM – the money is not dispensed until the card is removed. This prevents the customer from forgetting their card, as it is not possible to receive the cash without removing it. Against this background, a technical system can ensure that human error is avoided by the system. For example, the next working step can only be visualized and initiated when the previous action has been completely and correctly executed.

However, the principle is difficult to apply in special component configuration. With the help of computer vision technology and digital component recognition, VISCOPIC and Porsche have developed a digital Poka Yoke system.

By combining a computer vision setup and 3D processing in the Porsche Pilot Center, a scalable software solution was created that supports workers in the assembly of rotors. The technologies enable a clear recognition of components, which allows the assignment of these to process steps. This also enables control of the execution of the work steps, which is supported by the VISCOPIC AR software. As a result, the error rate is reduced and processes are made more efficient.

How does assembly at Porsche work with the VISCOPIC solution?

With the VISCOPIC Computer Vision Setup, the laminated cores can be scanned individually and the scanned images can be compared with the CAD originals. A high-resolution camera installed above the technician’s workstation detects geometric differences in the components in question. These variations are automatically compared with the geometric features extracted from the CAD data, thus clearly identifying and assigning the part. The technician is now guided and digitally supported by the VISCOPIC software in the form of an intuitive visual worker assistance; he or she is shown all important information and thus knows which parts are to be installed and how. By means of this CAD-based optical component recognition via a dynamically adaptive image processing system, the error rate can be reduced by preventing incorrect installations.

This innovative approach serves as a universal tool that can be applied to many other component types. Based on the generic solution, this setup can be used to detect a variety of components based solely on CAD component data.

Take advantage of the opportunities offered by digitalisation with numerous technologies for your company too! Contact us at to evaluate your use case.

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