High-resolution encoder offers exceptional versatility

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Inmoco's new miniature Mercury II 5000 encoder from MicroE Systems, with its excellent performance, accuracy, versatility and ease of use, provides resolutions ranging from 5um to 1.2nm linear – with accuracy up to +/-1um, or 20k CPR to 268M CPR rotary. In addition, the Mercury II 5000 offers the flexibility of one sensor for use with PurePrecision laser tape, glass linear and glass rotary scales with stick-on index and limits.

The Mercury II 5000 is a miniature, ultra-high resolution and accuracy digital encoder, designed for high-precision manufacturing and inspection applications where its excellent short-range accuracy ensures smooth velocity control.

Robust, versatile and easy to use, the Mercury II 5000 enables compact system design with a sensor that is just 11mm high. Moreover, as all electronics are integrated in the Mercury II sensor, including programmable features and interpolation up to x16384, users benefit from digital output right from the sensor, plus the attendant benefits of good system reliability, a small footprint and a wide variety of connector options, including customer-specific options.

Improved optical design

Also key to system performance and reliability is the improved 'Next-Generation' optical design of the Mercury II sensor, which provides higher resistance to contamination from fingerprints, oil, dust and other contaminants. The same advanced design also means that just one sensor works with tape and glass scales, which saves design time and reduces the number of unique parts in the system.

Tape or high-accuracy linear glass, the scales themselves are easy to install and use. This is due to MicroE's PurePrecision system that enables users to cut the scale to any required length; adhesive backing and a special application tool do the rest, making installation fast and accurate.

In addition, the PurePrecision system effectively addresses the requirement of cut-to-length tape scales for an adjustable index. In contrast to Hall sensors, which are large and difficult to install, the Mercury II has what is claimed to be the first and only stick-on optical index and limits. This bi-directional optical index provides 1LSB repeatability at all speeds, while fail-safe left and right optical limits enhance safety and reduce cabling.

Inmoco is supporting the Mercury II with MicroE's SmartPrecision II, described as the most advanced software in the industry. SmartPrecision II software adds further functionality, allowing set-up, monitoring, diagnostics and data plots. In addition, Ethernet connectivity enables secure, remote viewing of the encoder parameters.

Their small size, excellent operating performance and ease of installation mean that Mercury II 5000 encoders are suited to a wide range of precision applications. A cross-section of these typically includes wafer dicing and inspection in electronics manufacturing, FPD manufacturing, metrology, tuneable optical systems, autofocus mechanisms and microscope stages in inspection systems.

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