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Incremental optical linear and rotary encoders now offer 1 nm resolution

03 November 2009

Renishaw has introduced 1 nm and 2 nm resolution versions of its TONiC incremental encoder range. Available in linear and rotary formats, the new higher resolution options comprise a standard TONiC read head and new Ti20KD (1 nm) or Ti10KD (2 nm) interfaces that apply high interpolation rates to achieve very fine resolution. Furthermore, TONiC’s low-noise optical scheme with superior photometry has been combined with advanced filtering inside the Ti20KD/Ti10KD interfaces to reduce the jitter (noise on reported position) to a low level of just 0.51 nm RMS.

Significantly enhanced positional stability
The reduced jitter and increased resolution result in an encoder that provides significantly enhanced positional stability and low-speed velocity control. This improvement is additional to the benefits of the dynamic signal conditioning included as standard on all TONiC readheads.

As a result, 1 nm and 2 nm TONiC incremental encoders offer all the benefits of a 20 micron pitch encoder, such as easy set-up, greater ruggedness and superior dirt immunity, yet they also rival the resolution and noise levels of much finer pitch encoders.

Variety of linear and rotary scales available
The linear encoder version of TONiC is available with a comprehensive range of scale options. RGSZ is the latest evolution of Renishaw’s ubiquitous gold tape scale, now with integral IN-TRAC optical reference marks. RELM Invar spars offer “zero” thermal expansion and ±1 µm accuracy on lengths up to 1130 mm, whilst for high performance on long axes and significantly more robustness than glass scales, RSLM stainless steel spars have a total accuracy of ±4 µm over 5 m, with lengths up to 10 m available. Additionally, for very fast and easy installation, the new FASTRACK linear encoder scale system comes with low-profile RTLC tape scale, offering ±5 µm/m accuracy.

Rotary (angle) encoder options are also well served, with RESM rings in a range of standard diameters from 52 mm to 550 mm, with even larger sizes available. For even higher performance, ultra-high accuracy REXM ring encoders have a total installed accuracy better than ±1 arc second on ring diameters greater than 100 mm, when used with dual readheads.

The interfaces have been named after their interpolation factors: Ti20KD refers to 20k digital interpolation (post-quadrature), which equates to 1 nm resolution.

As with all Renishaw encoders, TONiC incremental encoders are backed by a truly responsive global sales and support network. Furthermore the product satisfies the highest environmental standards, with both WEEE and RoHS compliance.

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