Aerotech announces a new control function for AGV laser scanners


The demand for laser processes with higher throughput is increasing across all industries, while quality standards are being tightened at the same time. Conventional laser scanning systems quickly reach their limits. The motion control experts at Aerotech are therefore offering their users an upgrade in scanner performance with an extended controller function: the “enhanced scanner control” (ESC-Enhanced Scanner Control) can be used without additional set-up or programming effort and ensures fewer errors with more throughput.

Aerotech’s highly dynamic 2-axis laser scan heads, controlled via the Automation1 motion control platform, offer a unique benefit to laser process engineers and equipment manufacturers by bringing an additional level of performance to their automation processes. The enhanced control function ESC is now an optional upgrade to the hardware, firmware and controls, designed to provide significant added value to customers with more stringent requirements.
Simon Smith, European Director at Aerotech, summarises the advantages: “Motion profiles can be achieved more quickly and with the desired precision. Throughput gains in the process are increased and the machine performance allows cost targets of manufactured products to be improved.”

With the new ESC control function, users can now achieve a lower total cycle time for their parts to be machined with higher quality without costly set-up work. Companies from a wide range of industries can now process their orders faster and with fewer errors without ever having to leave the processing window again. Time lost due to skip delays is eliminated and higher scan accelerations and speeds can be applied.

According to Aerotech, applications that are already benefiting from the new control functions include:

  • Deep-hole laser drilling: deep holes, vertical profile, multiple processing at the same location
  • Circular contouring: lower circularity error, higher constant speeds
  • Corner contouring: reduced tracking errors, increased speed without tracking error limits
  • Laser cutting and micromachining: faster cutting, higher quality, higher throughput
  • Laser welding of medical devices: more parts per hour with a higher yield

Product implementation and schedule

ESC is now being introduced with the current version 2.7 of Automation1. The extended control function is standard for the AGV-XPO laser scanning head (galvo scanner) and as an additional option for the AGV-HP(O). According to the manufacturer, this is a controller function that does not require any hardware changes or further training.

Simon Smith concludes: “We want to further consolidate our pioneering role in the motion control environment, which is why we are constantly developing new ideas together with our customers in order to create high-performance processes with maximum precision. The improved scanner control is another milestone on this path.”