When it comes to measuring medical devices and prostheses, non-contact technologies are generally preferred because the parts to be measured may be flexible or deform under the action of a contact probe, or touching them is not permitted to avoid scratching or contamination.
Until now, the capabilities of optical metrology systems have been fairly limited in the medical field, due to their high cost and limited versatility. Only versatile vision systems have been widely adopted by medical device manufacturers to perform 2D dimensional checks on their parts. However, for 3D toleranced dimensional and roughness measurements, only CMMs and conventional contact roughness testers were previously available.
Today, thanks to the development of its range of optical 3D metrology systems, Bruker Alicona makes it possible to carry out these different types of inspection with a single complete piece of equipment, offering medical device manufacturers the possibility of measuring toleranced dimensional quantities, position and shape, as well as roughness.
Already widely adopted in the aeronautics and automotive sectors, optical 3D technology is an alternative to conventional metrology, and is of growing interest to the medical sector, as it enables a large number of points to be evaluated quickly, repeatably and seamlessly on micro-geometries that are difficult to access by contact methods, even on bulky parts.
Whereas conventional contact technologies require a great deal of operator know-how and are very time-consuming, optical 3D metrology provides a highly accurate, easily automated measurement solution, capable of bringing significant gains in productivity and competitiveness to production.
To illustrate the type of measurements performed by Bruker Alicona optical 3D metrology systems, we examined the sealing surfaces of four valve components made of different materials used in the medical industry to control gas or liquid flows.
"The miniaturization and increasing complexity of parts produced by the medical sector are making components increasingly difficult to measure. Alicona's 3D optical metrology solutions meet these new measurement objectives in terms of accuracy, automation and ergonomics, with versatile measurement systems that deliver a rapid return on investment for medical device manufacturers."the company says.
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