Replacing the laser in 3D – FocalSpec’s LCI offers superior accuracy in quality control for manufacturing

Line Confocal Imaging (LCI) is a unique and globally patented technology for carrying out 3-dimensional quality control measures. It allows for measuring and testing on-line, so that the desired look, feel and quality for products is achieved. It also enables accurate and fast measuring, not only in R&D, but also during on-line speeds in production.

Laser measuring, which is the most frequently used method for 3D measuring, is capable of nearly identical accuracy and speeds compared to LCI. What it lacks is the ability to measure transparent or shiny surfaces, or their combinations.

“One of the perks of LCI is that it can even detect separate layers in the scannable material, as long as they have separate refraction indexes. Speckle noise, which is a problem with laser scanning, is nonexistent when LCI is utilized”, says Sauli Törmälä, President of FocalSpec Ltd.

Utilizing Line Confocal Imaging to measure roughness and improve production

FocalSpec’s MicroProfiler MP900 can measure surface roughness at line speeds of up to 150 meters per minute. The LCI technology allows the profiler to scan moving cable surfaces at the rate of 250 measurements per second. The LCI sensors use a measurement profile line which records 2048
3-dimensional raw data measurement points simultaneously.

The MP900 on-line roughness measurement system is a highly mobile, easy to set-up measuring device for companies producing cables, wires and medical tubes. The MP900 is achieving high volumes of sales in Asia, mostly in China, where it has been thoroughly tested and put into use by major cable manufacturers.

FocalSpec has also developed a profiler for measuring online roughness of flat surfaces whether they are dark matte, glossy or transparent. The system utilizes the same LCI 1200 sensor than MP900.

LCI is suitable for a wide array of quality control measures

In a recent study made by the Tampere University of Technology, LCI was successfully used in preventing surface melt fracture in polymer cast film manufacturing.

LCI can be used in manufacturing to ensure a homogeneous extrusion process. It can be used to calculate the mean roughness, mean roughness depth and the mean width of profile elements. This can be utilized in the producing of medical equipment, for example medical tubes. It can also be used in achieving the wished look and feel for high end charger cables for cell phones.

“The MP900 allows for measuring on almost any surface material, such as glass, metal and a wide variety of plastics. Combined with the LCI 1200, manufacturers can attain notable boosts in the quality of their end product”, Törmälä says.

In October, FocalSpec attends K2016, a trade fair in Düsseldorf, Germany for plastics and rubber.

For more information:

Sauli Törmälä, President, FocalSpec Ltd.,, Tel. +358 10 231 2814

Sanna Rantanen, Director, Sales and Marketing, FocalSpec Ltd.,,
Tel. +358 400 214 012

FocalSpec is a privately held Finnish high tech company offering laboratory level measurement precision for online quality control and manufacturing line process optimization. Our product range consists of sensors, 2D profilers and 3D at-line scanners for metal, electronics, plastics and medical industries as well as for systems integrators. Our headquarters is located in Oulu, Finland and it operates globally through its subsidiary in Atlanta, USA and a skilled network of integrators and distribution partners.