16 May, 2022

Interacting with non-contact displacement and temperature sensors (Oct 2013)

12 November, 2013

At the Engineering Design Show (2-3 October 2013, Ricoh Arena, Coventry), precision sensor manufacturer Micro-Epsilon (stand C35) presented a range of sensor technologies, including non-contact eddy current and laser displacement sensors, infrared temperature sensors, thermal imaging cameras, draw wire sensors, and colour recognition sensors.

To encourage visitors to interact with the products, the stand staged a number of ‘live’ working demonstrations, where sensors were set up to capture measurements from a variety of real-world applications. Visitors were also invited to take part in Micro-Epsilon’s ‘Sensor Challenge’ to test their knowledge of the various non-contact measuring techniques.
Laser profile sensors
Highlights of the stand this year included the new scanCONTROL 2600/2900, the latest development in the company’s range of 2D/3D laser profile scanners. The scanCONTROL 2600/2900 is even more compact and lightweight than its predecessors, making it suitable for a wide range of measurement tasks in highly automated production environments. The sensor is small enough to be mounted on robot arms or on plant and machines where space is restricted. The sensors offer measuring rates of up to 1280 points per profile. Measuring ranges are from 53mm up to 390mm, with a choice of interfaces, including Gigabit Ethernet, RS422, as well as digital and encoder inputs.
Embedded Coil Technology
Other highlights at the show included the eddyNCDT 3100 displacement sensor, the first standard, catalogue sensor to benefit from Micro-Epsilon’s Embedded Coil Technology (ECT). ECT is a technological advancement in eddy current sensor design and manufacture, enabling ultra-compact designs to be produced and giving almost unlimited scope in terms of the external design and geometrical shape of the sensor. The eddyNCDT 3100 also gives improved flexibility and multi-sensor capability through an integrated calibration facility within the sensor head. The sensors offer extreme mechanical robustness, resulting in longer service intervals and higher temperature stability. This makes them highly suitable for harsh operating environments, including high vibration, impact shocks and high operating temperatures. Custom ECT sensor versions can be developed for high volume OEM applications.
Detecting small temperature differences
Micro-Epsilon also showcased its latest thermoIMAGER TIM 450 inline infrared thermal imager at the Engineering Design Show. This higher resolution camera offers improved image resolution, and also detects even smaller temperature differences. The TIM 450 is able to capture and store thermal video and images with high optical resolution (382 x 288 pixels) at a full frame rate of 80Hz. A new detector provides a thermal sensitivity of 40mK, enabling the camera to detect even smaller changes in temperature. Presentation and analysis of the images, videos and profiles are optimised by bi-spectral technology and an intelligent software developer kit. The TIM450 is available for less than £6000.
The stand also featured the thermoMETER CSmicro, one of the smallest infrared temperature sensors currently available. This miniature sensor has a diameter of just 14mm, with the electronics unit now fully integrated in the cable. The sensor now includes an LED for self-diagnostic functions or for displaying the current measured temperature. The sensor can be used in a wide range of OEM applications, particularly where installation space is restricted.

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