Frost & Sullivan Market Analysis CT Applications in Manufacturing Shift to Include Quality Control

The nascent computed tomography (CT) metrology market is rapidly climbing the ranks of the overall dimensional metrology domain, spurred by consistent technical advancements. A number of original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) and research organizations are joining hands to enhance accuracy, scanning speed, capacity to support multi-material complexity and the inspection of large parts. As a result, CT is finding uses in research and development (R&D) as well as quality control during manufacturing.

The new analysis from Frost & Sullivan, Strategic Analysis of Computed Tomography Technology in the Dimensional Metrology Market finds that the market earned revenues of $85.2 million in 2014. Increasing awareness on the importance of quality safety-critical parts is sustaining the deployment of CT systems in the automotive, medical and aerospace sectors. Reaching the best feature recognition possible in the examination process of industrial parts has become a high priority, driving the need for CT metrology systems. Through the use of multiple rotary positions, CT can deliver relevant dimensions of parts regardless of complexity. Moreover, end-users are turning to flexible CT solutions that can scan any type of surface topology and reach components not visible from outside. “Miniaturization of complex parts in the automotive, electronics and aerospace industries demands a high level of feature identification only available in CT metrology systems,” said Frost & Sullivan Measurement and Instrumentation Industry Analyst Mariano Kimbara. “In addition, CT metrology systems are in a unique position to provide three-dimensional (3D) CT measurements without preparation of the component or extensive programming.”

While CT has the potential to become a game-changing technology in the metrology market, high costs curb uptake in certain applications. Providers that raise awareness on CT benefits and offer comprehensive technical customer service will be well-positioned to grow given the huge market scope. Future market opportunities will also ride on technology developments. Improvements in the accuracy of dimensional measurements will be critical to quicken adoption. In several cases, inaccuracies remain unidentified since CT systems are multi-purpose measuring devices, and therefore measurement traceability cannot be assured. “Designing a fully automated software CT platform requiring minimal human intervention will guarantee high-precision results,” noted Kimbara. “Reducing human interference will ensure high-speed inspection and boost the repeatability of CT results too.” These advancements will push CT to completely replace conventional technologies such as coordinate measuring machines and traditional 3D scanners, thus revolutionizing the dimensional metrology space.