Etalon 1-100 channels with absolute measuring interferometer
Etalon reports that it and the University of Oxford have developed the technology for use in the precision measurement of lengths of up to 20m.
According to Etalon, the Absolute Multiline Technology combines the advantages of an interferometer – very high resolution, very good metrological traceability – with those of absolute measuring systems. Unlike conventional interferometers, the laser beam of the Absolute Multiline Technology can be interrupted at any time without causing precision loss, the company explained.
Integrated in a large machine tool, the system is said to continuously monitor machine calibration, and initiates compensating measures as needed to ensure the dimensional accuracy of the components. Even automated metrology monitoring of robots based on reference lines is possible, the company added. Moreover, the Absolute Multiline Technology can be used as a global metrology system for monitoring the entire in-line measuring technology of a production hall.
According to the developers, the system provides the foundation for machines and structures that are self-monitoring and can also become a building block in the future concept of intelligent production.
The metrological traceability of the technology is ensured by the reference to fundamental physical constants, Etalon explained. In every measurement, the molecular absorption spectrum of a gas cell that stays constant over decades is scanned and the system is thus automatically recalibrated during every measurement.
Comparison measurements using a conventional interferometer at the National Physical Laboratory in England confirmed a measurement uncertainty of 0.5 ppm (equivalent to 0.5µm per metre) for distances between 0.2m and 20m, the company said. It added that a single system can drive up to 100 measurement channels, depending on the configuration. Moreover, it can measure motions of an object with a resolution of over 500 kHz during one measurement interval, the company said.