Drives and Controls Magazine
Laser distance sensor ‘represents a new generation’
Published:  08 May, 2019

The German sensor-maker SensoPart claims that a new laser-based triangulation sensor represents a new generation of distance sensors. The FT 55-RLAM sensor, available with operating ranges up to 1m, can detect surfaces from black to shiny. It is equipped with an analogue output, two switching outputs, an IO-Link interface and an optional RS-485 port.

The sensor is said to owe its high detection efficiency to three main characteristics. First, it produces an oblong light spot that supplies a clear signal even on structured metal surfaces. Second, high signal amplification allows reliable detection of poorly-reflecting black parts, as well as shiny objects. And third, improved signal evaluation enhances the measurement reliability.

Special functions that cannot be implemented via a control system in fast-moving processes – such as outputting profile height differences, or determining minimum or maximum values – can be integrated without needing any programming. Instead of the usual seven-segment display, the sensor has a large LCD screen with soft keys.

SensoPart’s laser triangulation distance sensor can detect a variety of surfaces

The standard version of the sensor has a five-pin connector and an IO-Link interface, allowing direct communication for set-up and switching between configurations. There is also an eight-pin version with an RS-485 interface. Two sensors can be used in master/slave mode – for example, for double-layer detection or thickness measurements.