Mapvision: Faultless car parts with unique Finnish inspection technology

Mapvision ensures that car bodies and components emerging from a production line are of prime quality. Mapvision’s system is globally unique.

Located in Konala, Helsinki, Mapvision manufactures and delivers in-line inspection systems for the automotive industry, to be integrated in production lines. Car component suppliers use the company's solutions to monitor the geometric quality of body and chassis parts on high volume production lines. Mapvision's customers include major Tier 1 part suppliers in the automotive industry, such as Gestamp, Magna and Benteler, and the component factories of the car giants Daimler and BMW.

The in-line inspection solutions are based on Mapvision's own technology and sold worldwide – most of them to Germany, China and the United States. Founded in 1987, The company employs some 50 people and is hiring new employees at a steady pace.

Digital methods beat traditional ones

"Our measurement technology is based on photogrammetry. The delivery comprises equipment, inspection software and software for analysing and visualising the results. The inspection process is purely software-based, and no moving parts are required to perform measurements. Our solution has digitalised the inspection and quality control of geometry. The installation, training and consulting form an integral part of the package we offer," says Marketing and Communications Director Lasse Paakkola.

Adjusting of welding processes is difficult and slow using traditional methods. Defective parts are produced every now and then, and sample-based quality monitoring does not catch them all. Achieving and maintaining a sufficient quality level has been a challenge for part suppliers, and the costs caused by quality deviations have been a significant issue for them.

Unique Finnish expertise

"We are the only company in the world to successfully introduce optical inspection based on a multi-camera system in an industrial environment. We have no competitors that would use the same technology. With the help of the data produced by the system, our customers are able to adjust their processes with unprecedented efficiency. In addition, the system performs a complete final inspection that prevents the delivery of geometrically flawed products."

"Our main competition comes from traditional methods, such as using a coordinate measuring machine to adjust a line, and mechanical gauges or sample-based quality control at the final inspection stage. Technology competitors in the same market use stereo camera sensors and measurement systems based on laser scanning and robots. However, their accuracy and measuring speed clearly fall behind our system."

Entering the Asian market with a partner

In June 2016, the leading Japanese metrology company, Mitutoyo, acquired a minority share in Mapvision.

"We have already been selling systems to China for some time, mainly to Chinese plants owned by European companies. Japan and Korea have significant market potential for our products, but they are difficult to enter. Our partnership with Mitutoyo will open a door for us into these major countries in the automotive industry. One of the megatrends in the automotive industry is the switch from laboratory inspection to direct inspection on a production line. For Mitutoyo, in-line inspection is a strategically important investment. We offer Mitutoyo the products and know-how it requires in this growing area of quality control," says Lasse Paakkola.

Tekes has funded Mapvision's product development through several projects.

For further information, please contact

Lasse Paakkola
Mapvision
tel. +358 40 5011 895
lasse.paakkola (at) mapvision.fi
www.mapvision.fi

Photo: Mapvision

Kaj Nordgren