Tire manufacturers wants to satisfy their customers, and protect themselves from liabilities, manufacturers are moving to 100% tire inspection for defects and abnormalities. Defects not only cause potential safety issues but they can also introduce unwanted vibration into the vehicle suspension system. Belts can be overlapped, or not cover the complete tire surface, causing weak or bubbled areas and imbalances. The tread depth can be too shallow, leading to decreased service life. An uneven tire can cause excessive runout and vibration. MTI was approached by a major manufacturer requesting a solution to measure tread depth, runout and blistering.
They expected a non-contact sensor with a 40 mm (1.6”) measurement range, a minimum standoff of 100 mm (4”) and a frequency response greater than 5kHz. The package needed to be capable of operating in a harsh manufacturing environment, 24-hours per day. MTII Application Engineers worked closely with the customer and provided the Microtrak laser displacement sensor.
The Microtrak laser displacement sensor communicated with the customers DAQ system. Each signal was analyzed and tires found to be outside acceptable limits were rejected. The standoff exceeded the customer’s requirement, reducing the possibility of damage to the laser head.