New Ford Technology Has Dirt Detection Using High-Res Cameras

Posted Aug 26, 2013

Ford Motor Company has created new technology for new Ford F-Series models that focuses on dirt detection.  Ford’s dirt detection technology uses high-resolution cameras and reflected light to digitally identify surface impactions that are finer than a grain of salt in final vehicle assembly.  Operators are cued where to polish and buff out imperfections.

Ford has improved paint quality and has reduced customer complaints of vehicle surface finish by 82% within one year, according to customer warranty data from F-Series models produced at their Dearborn Truck Plant in Dearborn, Michigan.

The dirt detection technology uses microscopic scans of each painted vehicle surface and then cues the final assembly operators to repair the vehicle where it is necessary.  In the past, Ford relied on human-eye examination.

?This system ensures better paint jobs and surface finishes for Ford customers around the world,? stated Ford’s global paint applications project manager Tom Dougan.

The 3D imaging system uses varying degrees and angles of light while looking at the paint surface of vehicle bodies to identify dirt in paint or other irregular paint conditions.  Around 3,150 images are captured in 15 seconds for every vehicle made.  The images are stitched together for a full 3D image that is digitally compared to a perfect computer model.