Industrial beam profiler enables safe, powerful predictive maintenance for high-power CO2 lasers

April 6, 2009--Ophir-Spiricon (Logan, UT) is announcing today its new ModeCheck Industrial CO2 Laser Beam Profiler, a low-cost, portable system designed to help industrial parts manufacturers conduct efficient predictive maintenance and reduce changeover time. Reportedly the only offering of its type, the system measures key characteristics of high-power CO2 beams in real-time and stores mode images for later recall and comparison.

April 6, 2009--Ophir-Spiricon(Logan, UT) is announcing today its new ModeCheck Industrial CO2 Laser Beam Profiler, a low-cost, portable system designed to help industrial parts manufacturers conduct efficient predictive maintenance by enabling quantitative measurement and viewing. Reportedly the only offering of its type, the system measures key characteristics of high-power CO2 laser beams in real-time and stores mode images for later recall and comparison so that such shops can easily verify performance and reduce changeover time.

Ophir-Spiricon president Gary Wagner told Laser Focus World that ModeCheck targets "contract manufacturers with three or more lasers." He said it is designed to replace the time-consuming process that many such shops use to gather data on beam shape--acrylic mode burns. Acrylic mode burns are much less accurate than ModeCheck's process--and they produce toxic fumes, Wagner explained. He described the inefficient process manufacturers need to make to protect workers from carcinogenic fumes in order to conduct acrylic mode burning.

ModeCheck offers numerous capabilities for manufacturers that depend on the effectiveness of their lasers. In an interview with Laser Focus World, Wagner described how manufacturers may be tempted to simply crank up the power when a laser begins to lose effectiveness over time. But, he said, that often doesn't solve the problem--and in fact can introduce other problems. For instance, Wagner explained, "power density may fall."

ModeCheck monitors high power CW and pulsed lasers in the 8-30µm range with intensities up to 30 W/cm2. The system reduces the time needed for changeovers between jobs. The user can quickly place the ModeCheck head in front of the laser, then see and measure the beam profile to confirm optimal laser performance. ModeCheck delivers accurate 2D and 3D renderings of the beam profile in real-time. When used regularly, the user can compare measurement changes from the same set-up and make necessary adjustments, keeping the laser output constant for the same job from day-to-day. Over time, the user will be able to measure laser degradation and predict and schedule down-time for maintenance.

"Manufacturers are under intense pressure to maintain quality and produce increasingly customized products," Wagner said. "ModeCheck was created for exactly this scenario. It instantly sees and measures the beam, reducing setup times and optimizing laser efficiency."

ModeCheck is based on technology Ophir-Spiricon designed for the demands of the aerospace industry, which the company customized to better meet the needs of industry. The price has been adjusted as well; the ModeCheck Industrial CO2 Beam Analyzer is priced starting at $5000, and OEM pricing is available on request.

For more information on ModeCheck, see the data sheet on Ophir-Spiricon's website.

Reported by Barbara G. Goode, barbarag@pennwell.com, for Laser Focus World.


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