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Simple shaft aligner uses digital camera technology

01 November, 2006

Simple shaft aligner uses digital camera technology

SKF has launched an easy-to-use system for aligning the shafts of rotating machines such as motors, gearboxes, compressors and fans. The Fixturlaser XA system consists of a handheld computer and two sensor heads containing CCDs (charge couple devices), similar to those used to capture images in digital cameras.

SKF claims that this is the first time that CCDs have been used in laser alignment systems. It says they are smaller, lighter and more robust than traditional PSDs (position-sensitive detectors), as well as providing a larger measuring area and producing readings with a high sensitivity, consistency and linearity.

The handheld computer has a 6.4-inch high-resolution (640 x 480 pixel) display that can be operated using gloved hands. The system which provides animated graphics to guide the user, allows even unskilled operators to produce rough alignment checks in a few minutes.

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