Standardization of Coordinate Measuring Machines Supports Smart Factory Infrastructure

By Anju Ajaykumar

Industry Trends

The move toward Industry 4.0 drives a new trend in smart factory infrastructure.  Manufacturers are transiting to smart connected factories and extending Industrial IoT ecosystems across factories, plants, and supply chains.  Efficient and flexible data analysis are critical for production systems and plant assets.  As the trend of Industry 4.0 accelerates, metrology and quality control need to keep up with the latest digital trend.  Coordinate measuring machines are critical machines in manufacturing process, which captures geometric measurements or surface conditions of a workpiece.  Continued technology advancements now enable coordinate measuring machines to be integrated into the shop floor and interoperate with other inspection technologies throughout the manufacturing process.  This helps manufacturers share and exchange the captured data while reducing manufacturing waste and time.  The Quality Information Framework (QIF), developed by Dimensional Metrology Standards Consortium, is a unified XML framework standard for computer-aided quality measurement systems.  The QIF standard, enables companies to capture, use, and re-use metrology-related information throughout the PLM/PDM domain.  It supports the seamless exchange of metrology data across the manufacturing process.  This advancement promotes production optimization, real-time production and performance feedback, and production-responsive operations. 

Quality Information Framework, a Prerequisite for Industry 4.0-enabled Coordinate Measuring Machines

To support the digital transformation of inspection operations, QIF intelligently organizes the inspection data generated by coordinate measuring machines and other inspection technologies from different suppliers to provide output in a standard format.  This enables data interoperability throughout the manufacturing process and supports strategic use of quality information across the product development process.  With QIF, manufacturers have a standard platform for setting up a connected digital manufacturing infrastructure.

Coordinate measuring machines enhance production efficiency
Quality Information Framework Standard for Coordinate Measuring Machines


Standards play an important role in building a smart factory environment.  Standardized infrastructure facilitates flexible manufacturing environment by easily connecting entire production facility.  Manufacturers need to adopt standards and make them part of their requirement for hardware and software suppliers to facilitate seamless communication and automation in the production facility.   Seamless exchange of data within the facility or between the machines is possible when the data exchanged is clearly defined and standardized.  A smart ecosystem integrated with standards enhances productivity, competitiveness, and efficiency.

Shop Floor Coordinate Measuring Machines Enhance Production Efficiency

Integration of coordinate measuring machines into the production line enables enhanced productivity and quality, reduces inspection times, and saves costs.  In-line technology has made inroads, with automotive, aerospace, and fabrication industries automating coordinate measuring machines within manufacturing cells.  This technology ensures high-speed detection of variations and enables corrective actions in real time while maintaining the continuous flow of production. 

Shop floor Coordinate measuring machine
Shop Floor Coordinate Measuring Machines


A new ARC market analysis report on Coordinate Measuring Machines provides strategic market information and includes quantitative assessments and forecasts of this market and discusses applications, sales channels, customer types, and major suppliers of this increasingly important technology.

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