Which scanner is best suited to which application?

As a pioneer in laser scanning, Nikon Metrology has years of experience and knowledge in how customers use laser scanners in real-life applications from automotive and aerospace to medical, research and many other sectors. The Nikon Metrology range of laser scanners can be categorized as one of the following; Line Scanner, high-accuracy Line Scanner, Cross Scanner or ModelMaker (for handheld applications only). All of the scanners in the Nikon range make use of the unique ESP technology to deal with shiny or reflective surfaces and can easily scan soft or fragile objects. Nikon Metrology laser scanners can also be retrofitted to existing CMMs and 3rd party arms from many brands.

nikon metrology laser scanning overview

CMM Line Scanners

L100 – Best combination of productivity and accuracy

nikon metrology L100 scannerThe newest laser scanner from Nikon Metrology introduces the 4th generation Enhanced Sensor Performance (ESP4). With a high point resolution along a 100 mm wide stripe, the L100 achieves a data collection rate of 200,000 points per second. As the most productive line scanner, it offers double the point resolution, 2.5 x the scanning speed and 30% better accuracy than other scanners. With a projected field-of-view, the L100 makes for easy path planning and the ESP4 means it is the most adept at handling difficult shiny or reflective surfaces.

Like other line scanners, the L100 is often used for surface and feature inspection in automotive and aerospace applications. However, its specification makes it the fastest and most accurate multi-purpose scanner, therefore the most proficient tool for almost any application.

Visit the L100 page here, to find out more.

  • Ultrafast data collection – 200,000 point/s scan speed
  • Captures the finest details - Best-in-class probing error of 6.5 μm
  • Easy to use – Field-of-view (FOV) projection
  • Highly accurate surface & feature inspection for automotive and aerospace industries
  • Fast surface inspection and shape validation
  • Body-in-White (BIW) and gap & flush inspection

LC15Dx - Closing the gap with tactile accuracy.

nikon metrology jaw LC15DxThe high accuracy LC15Dx uses a smaller laser stripe, but with more points along the stripe for a higher resolution makes it the most accurate Nikon Metrology laser scanner available. The LC15Dx perfectly suits digitizing compact or detailed objects with higher point density and tighter tolerances, both suited for surfaces and features. Considering this, the LC15Dx is often used for the inspection of high precision parts.

The LC15Dx closes the gap between laser scanner and tactile probe accuracy, making it a viable alternative to a tactile probe for an increasing number of high precision CMM applications. In tests, the LC15Dx achieved the accuracy associated with using a tactile probe on a CMM. The probing error of 1.9 µm mirrors the accuracy expected when using a CMM fitted with a tactile probe. Unlike a tactile probe though, the LC15Dx uses non-contact 3D laser triangulation to measure the surface directly and eliminate probe compensation errors.

Visit the LC15Dx page here, to find out more.

  • Highest accuracy for inspection of precision parts
  • Viable non-contact alternative to tactile probe for many applications
  • Narrow stripe with high-resolution for inspection of smaller items
  • Medical implants
  • Precision moulds
  • Turbine blades


LC60Dx – All-purpose scanning

nikon metrology dual purpose LC60DxThe LC60Dx can be used both on a static CMM or an articulated arm offering ultimate flexibility The all-purpose line scanner ensures quality data collection with optimal cost-performance ratio. Featuring the ESP3 it deals with challenging reflective, shiny or multi-colour surfaces. The LC60Dx is often used for surface inspection, troubleshooting and shape validation.

  • Dual-purpose for use on CMM or articulated arm
  • Straightforward programming and execution, even for novice or non-metrology users
  • Cost-effective solution for all purposes
  • Surface inspection
  • Troubleshooting
  • Shape validation


CMM Cross Scanners

XC65Dx - The ultimate scanner for feature inspection and more...

nikon metrology cross scanner XC65DThe XC65Dx Cross Scanner utilises three laser stripe scanners in one sensor. The three lasers are spaced 120 degrees apart and observe the part in question from three angles. By doing this, the XC65Dx can acquire the same amount of data with just one scan than a line scanner would do in three scans. This feature makes the XC65Dx well suited to feature inspection of slots, holes and grooves in sheet metals or items with a large complex surface area. It is often used in automotive BIW (Body-in-White) inspection, gap & flush and driveline casting inspection.

XC65Dx-LS (long standoff variant)

Whilst the long standoff Cross Scanner retains the many advantages of the original XC65Dx, it also excels in dealing with accessing difficult-to-reach or obscured areas. By capturing geometry up to a distance of 170 mm (7.1 ”), the scanner gains optimum access to cavity surfaces of body-in-white structures or can scan over the clamps that hold components in position. For these reasons, the XC65Dx-LS scanner is used a lot on horizontal-arm CMMs in the automotive industry.

Visit the XC65Dx page here, to find out more.

  • Full 3D capture of complex surfaces and features geometry in a single scan
  • Suited for both surface and feature scanning in tight cycle times
  • Optimised for deep pockets and slots, and accessing other hard-to-reach locations (LS)
  • BIW (Body-in-White) inspection
  • Gap & flush
  • Driveline casting inspection


Handheld ModelMaker scanners

MMDx ModelMaker sanner – Portable productivity

nikon metrology MMDx ModelmakerMMDx ModelMaker scanners are used in handheld applications and feature different models with different stripe widths. They are optimised for portable 3D inspection and reverse engineering and are of a robust design to be deployed in both metrology labs or on a production shop floor. Just like the CMM scanners, the ModelMakers use ESP technology. Incorporating dynamic point-per-point laser intensity adaptation which allows different surface materials, finishes and transitions to be scanned without user interaction.

  • Seamless transition between scanning and touch probing
  • ‘Plug-and-play’ – Quick and easy setup
  • Robust design for metrology lab or production shop floor
  • Reverse engineering
  • First article inspection against CAD
  • Gap & flush inspection


The ModelMaker scanners are primed for high productivity with the widest laser stripes of 200 mm (MMDx200) in the Nikon Metrology range. With the emphasis of the ModelMaker scanners being on productivity, these scanners are often used for first article inspection against CAD models and in reverse engineering applications to attain fast and accurate scans.

Visit the Handheld page here, to find out more.

You can also read the case studies or watch the movie.

ScannerAccuracyStripe widthBest suited for…
MMDx50 7 μm 50 mm Detail & high accuracy
MMDx100 10 μm 100 mm General purpose, combined accuracy & productivity
MMDx200 16 μm 200 mm Large parts & productivity


K-Scan MMDx – Full freedom scanning

nikon metrology KScan MMDxMMDx scanners are used in the K-Scan probe with Optical CMM localizer. K-Scan MMDx is a walk-around laser scanner for portable metrology applications. Accurate, easy-to-use and with stunning performance ensure it to be the most capable handheld scanning solution without mechanical constraints. The scanner is tracked by the K-CMM Optical Tracker, so that operators can measure anywhere needed.

© MMDx is the ultimate tool for accurate part-to-CAD inspection and productive reverse engineering, combining the accuracy and productivity of the MMDx laser scanner and the user freedom, measurement volume and motion compensation of the K-CMM Optical Tracker system. The optical CMM is used in larger measuring volumes and can easily cover a full car. The measuring volume can even be extended further to accommodate trucks, buses or off-road vehicles.

Visit the K-Scan page here, to find out more.

You can also read the case studies or watch the movie.

  • Measure anywhere & effortless handling with ergonomic design
  • High scanning throughput for maximum productivity
  • Large measurement volume up to 35 m³, further expandable by leap frog functionalities, multi-camera support or dynamic referencing
  • Full freedom scanning of large objects: automotive components of any size
  • On-site measurement applications
  • Scanning for reverse engineering