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Nikon LC15Dx scanner closes the gap with tactile probe accuracy

February 29, 2012

For over a decade, Nikon Metrology pioneered laser scanning and gradually sharpened the capabilities of this non-contact measuring technology. Nikon’s superior optics combined with innovative 3D laser scanning technology resulted in this new, groundbreaking Nikon scanner. The LC15Dx digital laser scanner is a new milestone, as it brings laser scanning in the accuracy range of tactile inspection.LC15Dx is a viable alternative to a tactile probe for an increasing number of high precision CMM applications; including molds, small turbine blades, medical devices and other complex geometry.

Closing the gap with tactile probe accuracy

Following an intense R&D phase involving engineering from Nikon Japan, the LC15Dx is the first CMM laser scanner to benefit from a high quality Nikon lens and receive the Nikon branding. “The LC15Dx is a significant breakthrough product, our customers can now realize the measurement possibilities and productivity gains they have been asking for.  This  further bolsters our position as industry innovator and market lead for metrology grade laser scanners.”commented Kenji Yoshikawa, chairman and CEO of Nikon Metrology.

LC15Dx accuracy comes close to the accuracy expected when using a CMM and tactile probe. Thanks to new solid state laser scanner technology, an innovative calibration method and high quality Nikon lens, the LC15Dx achieves a probing  accuracy of 2.5µm (0.0001in) multi-stylus test accuracy of 6µm (0.00024in) in tests comparable to EN/10360-2 and -5. A unique thermal stabilizer inside the scanner body eliminates the uncertainty and delay caused when the laser scanner is used before it has reached operating temperature. Probe tip compensation errors are also eliminated by using non-contact triangulation between the laser source, workpiece and CCD sensor to measure the surface of the workpiece directly.

Versatile scanning without the hassle

The LC15Dx provides significant benefits for a wide variety of high precision parts and geometry, including small details, semi-rigid parts and the more demanding materials. A greater range and mix of surface materials, finishes, colors and transitions can be measured more efficiently without user interaction, manual tuning and part spraying. Nikons unique third-generation Enhanced Scanner Performance (ESP3) technology maintains accuracy, speed and data quality by intelligently adapting the laser settings for each measured point in real-time. Unwanted reflections are neutralized by an advanced software filter while changes in ambient light are absorbed by a high grade daylight filter.

Better insights, earlier

Manufacturers gain a full appreciation of the dimensional quality of their products without compromising on cycle times. As the LC15Dx passes over the workpiece mounted on a CMM, a laser line is projected onto the surface. The line measures 70,000 points per second at intervals of 22µm (0.0008in). As the entire part is checked to the design intent CAD model, any areas of concern are immediately highlighted using color mapping. Further investigation and analysis is possible using fly-outs, sections and a library of Geometric Dimensioning and Tolerancing (GD&T).

Multi-sensor applications , ready to retrofit to your CMM

In situations where a single sensor technology is insufficient for measuring all the features, the LC15Dx can be combined with a tactile probe and change rack to create a versatile fully automated multi-sensor CMM. Depending on the application both technologies can be used independently or together within the same inspection program.

The LC15Dx is available with any Nikon Metrology CMM and can be retrofitted to existing CMMs fitted with CMM controllers from Aberlink, Deva, Coord3, Dukin, LK, Hexagon DEA, Hexagon Brown & Sharpe, Hexagon Sheffield, Mitutoyo, Mora, Renishaw, Wenzel, Werth, Zeiss and probe heads Renishaw PH10M, PH10MQ, PHS and Hexagon CW43.

About NIKON METROLOGY

Nikon Metrology offers the broadest range of metrology solutions for applications ranging from miniature electronics to the largest aircrafts. Nikon Metrology’s innovative measuring and precision instruments contribute to a high performance design-through-manufacturing process that allows manufacturers to deliver premium quality products in a shorter time.

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