LAKE MARY, FL-Faro, manufacturer of portable 3-D measurement and imaging technology, has won the Defense Manufacturing Excellence Award from the National Center for Advanced Technologies (NCAT).

The National Center for Defense Manufacturing and Machining (NCDMM) assembled a team to improve manufacturing methods for Naval submarine tapers and carrier propulsion drive shafts.

The team consisted of the NCDMM, the Applied Research Laboratory of Penn State University and Faro. The solution included developing an advanced measurement system that dramatically reduced the in-process and final inspection stages for the shafts. Faro adapted the technology and software for the solution, which employed a Faro laser tracker to map the surface of each taper while the shaft remained on the machine tool.

The solution reduced inspection time from 72 hours to 24 hours-a 66% reduction compared to the previous method-and easily transitioned to multiple shafts and shipyards. The project resulted in more consistent inspection processes, longer shaft life, elimination of costly gage masters and increased flexibility to accommodate design changes-all of which resulted in reduced run times and increased the shipyards’ cost savings by up to $8 million.

“This is an outstanding testament to the value of our products and the return on investment companies need in this economy,” says David Morse, Faro senior vice president and managing director of the Americas. “We couldn’t have achieved the award without the effort of our whole Faro tracker team, which included Ken Steffey, Chuck Pfeffer, Alex Burrows, Ed Franulovic, Eric Boyer and Dave Sommers.”