Crane Rail Thickness Custom Application Posted in: Position Measurement – Tags: , , ,

Measurement of wear-and-tear on rail flanges goes from 3 months to 1 night with Acuity laser sensors

Crane rail thickness solution utilizes both short range and long range laser sensors


What do you do if manually measuring the thickness of your crane rail is taking too much of your team’s time? That was the quality control scenario an engineering company found itself in before they came to the Acuity team for measurement advice.

The company had a project involving continuous field measurements of approximately 1000 linear feet of crane rail flanges for evaluation of flange thickness wear from the trolley wheels. The customer needed help selecting and setting up hardware and software to measure thickness relative to distance along each crane rail. This was an important solution for the customer because it was taking three months to manually measure the thickness of the rail and they needed a faster, more automated solution.

After more discussions, the team found out the customer would be setting up the measurement system on a mobile track system. From the hardware side, the customer needed three distinct items: the sensors for the rail thickness measurement, a sensor for the long-range distance tracking, and a display device reading the measurements. From the software side, the customer needed a system capable of performing some computational gymnastics. They wanted the system to take the thickness measurement data while correlating that info relative to the distance along the crane rail, all while logging the data for future analysis.

Upon understanding more of the application, the Acuity team got to work and realized: “Hey, this is a beautiful scenario of peanut butter and jelly working together.” Finding the laser sensors to take the thickness measurement was a relatively common task for the Acuity team, as Acuity has a deep roster of short range sensors perfect for this type of thickness measurement. With a rail thickness of up to ¼ inch, the team selected (2) AR200-25 sensors in a dual thickness measurement position. For the long-range position measurement, the Acuity team went to their bench of long range sensors and selected their longest-range sensor, the AR3000 Distance Measurement Sensor. With ranges up to 300 meters on natural targets, the AR3000 was a great fit for this very long-range positional application.

Finally, the Acuity team attacked the software situation. Acuity software engineers were able to come together to provide a custom modification to the standard Touch Panel Display software, enabling the change needed to marry the thickness measurement of the AR200 sensors and correlate it with the AR3000 position measurement. Working together with this customer, the system was designed to take all the crane rail thickness measurements in one night versus the three months it was taking the customer before.

Have a challenging measurement problem your team is facing? Our team has decades of experience in the field finding solutions for our customers’ applications.

Related Products

AR200 Laser Measurement Sensor

NEW FOR 2023 – AR200 Now Nearly Twice as Accurate

The AR200 laser measurement sensor is a compact, durable, and reliable sensor built for many industries including the lumber, medical and high-tech industries. The AR200 sensor consists of five different models with ranges up to 100 mm (4 in) and accuracies down to 6-microns to satisfy precise measuring requirements.

Touch Panel Display 8-Inch

The 8-inch Touch Panel Display can control up to six Acuity laser sensors and display their distance readings. Using serial communications, this smart terminal includes software applications for calculating thickness and other dimensions without the need for a computer or software programming.

AR3000 Distance Measurement Sensor

AR3000 distance measurement sensors are Acuity’s longest-range models. Ideal for measuring positions of cranes and trolleys, the time-of-flight sensor can measure up to 300 meters to natural surfaces and up to 3,000 meters when using a retroreflective target.

Inside Technical Sales and Support at Acuity Laser | Website | + posts

Sarah has been our technical support and sales engineer for 5+ years. If you've ever reached out to Acuity Laser for tech support, more than likely, Sarah is the one who helped you.