Micro-Epsilon UK Ltd. - PRODUCT NEWS

Laser sensor filters out any interference from sub-micrometre surface defects.

A new non-contact laser profile displacement sensor is now available, which uses a unique laser line and special software algorithms to filter out any interference caused by very small (sub-micrometre) surface defects on shiny objects such as polished metals, mild steel and rubber.

Rather than using a spherical or point-shaped laser spot, Micro-Epsilon’s optoNCDT 2200-LL uses a special cylindrical lens that widens the laser spot to an oval shape. Although this shape appears as oval to the human eye, the actual shape is a very small line that measures just 30 micrometres wide by 300 micrometres in length. Measurements using this laser line are then averaged using Micro-Epsilon’s patented software algorithms, so that any interference caused by surface roughness, defects, indentations or holes down in the sub-micrometre range – are completely filtered out.

An ideal application for the optoNCDT 2200-LL is therefore in structured surfaces, where the distance and not the structure itself need to be measured. The distance measurement should not be influenced by the structure of the surface, but instead should provide a constant, reliable value of the distance from the target.

Erich Winkler, Product Manager at Micro-Epsilon comments: “The speckle effect that is often associated with rough surfaces is filtered out by the new sensor’s optics and software algorithms. A component with a rough surface, when illuminated with light from a laser, exhibits a speckled appearance. This effect makes it very difficult for laser sensors to measure distances to surfaces, especially if the surface defects are very small.”

According to Winkler, the optoNCDT 2200-LL is already being used in a number of applications, including measuring the distance of lift cylinders on printing machines and for measuring the thickness of shiny, oily steel surfaces on textile machinery. The sensor is also being used to measure structured surfaces on grinding wheels and on CNC turned parts, including shafts and tubes. “These parts are cut from metal and are left with small machining tracks on the surface, which together, act like a small mirror to a laser light. In this case, most of the light is reflected back to the sensor at different angles rather than in a diffuse manner and so the sensor struggles to take accurate measurements. The optoNCDT 2200-LL has been designed specifically to solve measurement problems such as these,” explains Winkler.

Seven different versions of the optoNCDT 2200-LL sensor are available, with measuring ranges between 2mm and 200mm. The sensor is based on the company’s very successful optoNCDT 2200 and therefore benefits from all the other advantages of this series, such as fast measurement rates and automatic real-time exposure regulation.

For more information on Micro-Epsilon’s optoNCDT 2200-LL and 2220 sensors, please call the sales department on 0151 260 9800 or email: info@micro-epsilon.co.uk

For sales and technical information contact:-

Chris Jones
Micro-Epsilon UK Ltd.
Telephone: +44(0)151 355 6070
Fax: +44(0)151 355 6075

June 2008

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