Customization for Laser Measurement Sensors

At Acuity Laser, customization with measurement sensors is one of our core strengths


Short range sensorsWe use our expertise to solve challenging measurement applications, and we’ve worked with customers both large and small to provide customized laser sensors and solutions. Many of our products, such as the AR200 Laser Measurement Sensor and the AR700 Laser Displacement Sensor, have seen new versions develop out of real-world challenges our customers faced and that Acuity helped resolve.

Measuring Deflection with Sub-Micron Accuracy

In one customized laser sensor example, an existing Acuity customer asked for a sensor to measure deflection with sub-micron accuracy in a tight contaminated space. To keep the laser out of the area that could damage the laser sensor, it needed to be highly accurate and use a single spot triangulation method.

In response we custom-created the AR700-2 long range model. This AR700 has the same small footprint as the AR700 compact unit (similar to the AR700-4). The sensor can measure with accuracy from 5″ out to 7″ from the face of the laser triangulation sensor. The 2″ measurement span provides a resolution of 0.0001″ with a linearity of better than +/- 0.0006″ over the full measurement span of 2″. The AR700-2L has all the same command and communications features as the existing AR700 product line.

Measuring flux-core welding wire

Measuring flux-core welding wire

In a different type of example, a manufacturer of flux-core welding wire needed to measure the height of the flux in a channeled wire. Crucially, the sensor needed to focus on the flux without landing on the walls of the metal wire. As well the customer needed to see the real-time measurement output as a graph on a large display for its employees to monitor.

After working with us, the customer chose the AR200-6 model due to its high accuracy and very small spot size. The AR200-6 is Acuity’s shortest range AR200 Laser Measurement Sensor that boasts a linearity down to 12µm and resolution less than 2µm. The AR200-6 model has a spot size as small as 35μm in diameter at the middle of its range. This provides insurance that the laser beam is focused strictly on the flux material for optimized height measurement.

For this flux-core welding wire project, Acuity custom-created a version of our user interface software to take multiple readings and display the readings as a graph on a large display. Adapting our touch panel display to display unique measurement data is a common type of customization for our team. Our 7-inch Acuity Touch Panel Display can control Acuity measurement sensors and display their distance readings. Using serial communications, the smart terminal includes software for calculating thickness and other dimensions without the need for a computer or software programming.

Measuring Battery Expansion

Mutli-sensor battery expansion measurementIn a recent project that utilized our touch panel display, a manufacturer was looking to find a system to precisely measure the displacement of a battery cell during battery expansion measurement tests. The customer was looking to measure the battery cell expansion under cycling and other pressures in a controlled temperature environment.

Using non-contact measurement, the customer was looking to analyze the locations of any battery expansion to see if it was uniform or not, all while maintaining accuracy down to a micron. As well the customer wanted an out-of-the-box solution without the need for software programming on their end.

After a few meetings, Acuity engineers suggested a setup of three AR700-0125 laser models and our Touch Panel Display. Custom software was written in order to calculate, display and record the individual displacement of the three lasers, as well as the x-slope, y-slope and center-z of the target surface. At a glance the customer can see the measurements on the touch panel display as well as export the data to other platforms.

Armed with that data, the customer is ready to guide their design during their next series of iterations.

OEM Customization and Machine Integration

Customization for Laser Measurement Sensors

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In general, Acuity accepts special customized sensor requests for OEM machine integration. Special customized laser sensors range from custom cables and connectors to modifications of units for OEM integration.

In one example, a customer needed a specially designed right-angle connector to meet space requirements inside their enclosure. Acuity developed a right-angle connector to come straight out of the AR700 housing to meet the tight enclosure demands. Acuity also engineered the wire coming out of the elbow of the connector to be as short as possible to meet the customer’s space requests. In addition, Acuity designed a custom 6-wire connector to meet the customer request of only dealing with the proper wires needed for their application.

Customized Sensors for Specific Applications

In another example, a customer requested cabling modifications to include a short pigtail cable connector 6 inches from the unit. They wanted these pigtail cable connectors modified in order to allow easy sensor disconnection for troubleshooting purposes inside their large OEM machine. Acuity sourced customized connectors based off the customer’s needs and in addition, Acuity added a customer specific high flex cable to meet the customer’s cable bend cycle requirements.

In our last example, Acuity had a customer looking for a solution to measure distances off a specular surface. A tough measurement for any laser, Acuity engineered a modified long-distance sensor to do the job. Acuity installed a diffuser in front of our AR1000 Laser Distance Sensor that spread the beam out to increase the laser spot size on the target surface. In doing this, the larger beam size increased the tolerance of the target tilt in order read measurements off the difficult material. Acuity also installed a correctly positioned neutral density filter in front of the receiver to only allow the correct amount of reflected light to be received back to the detector. This customized modification was in turn as accurate as the standard off-the-shelf version of the sensor.

Do You Have a Challenging Application?

Our sales team has decades of experience in the field finding solutions for our customers’ applications.