Almost 15 years ago, ZEISS was one of the first companies to recognize the opportunities offered by carbon fiber technology for metrology and launched ZEISS ThermoFit, the first carbon fiber stylus extension on the market. Although the advantages of such extensions are therefore generally known, “they are unfortunately not as present in everyday metrology as they should be,” emphasizes Jörg Eßwein, Business Development Manager for the Field of Business Accessories of ZEISS Industrial Quality Solutions.
And this has consequences. Valuable measuring time is wasted when using extensions made of aluminum. Because of the high weight of these extensions, only simple probe systems can be used. With the lightweight carbon fiber extensions, on the other hand, more complex probe systems can be constructed without losing valuable time when measuring complex parts.
And since metrology is also moving closer and closer to production, there is one more point in favor of carbon fiber extensions - they do not expand under the influence of heat. The clever material pairing of ZEISS extensions almost completely compensates for the heat influence on the measurement result. This means that regardless of whether users measure in the measuring lab or in production, with carbon you are always on the safe side.
In order to be able to meet the different performance requirements of its customers, ZEISS has now developed the new ZEISS REACH CFX portfolio, which offers two new carbon fiber extensions in addition to the existing ZEISS ThermoFit extensions. This means that users now have a total of three variants to choose from, which have been adapted to the individual accuracy classes of different coordinate measuring machines. The different accuracy levels of the individual solutions CFX 1, CFX 3 and CFX 5 is achieved by using a variety of carbon fibers. These have varying degrees of tensile strength, which influences the stiffness of extensions. All extensions of the new portfolio are far superior to those made of aluminum and titanium in this respect. A great advantage for the user, because increased stiffness of the extension reduces the measurement uncertainty of the entire system.
The newly developed ZEISS REACH CFX 1 extensions offer a cost-efficient introduction to carbon fiber technology and a significant performance upgrade compared to aluminum and titanium extensions. It is approximately 40 percent stiffer than, for example, an extension made of titanium and thus offers significantly more stable measurement results.
Results are even more reliable - even at high scanning speeds - when the ZEISS REACH CFX 3 probe extension is used. The further 30 percent increase in stiffness compared to CFX 1 is particularly advantageous when high accuracy requirements are to be met by the measurement result. Many customers already know this version under the name ZEISS ThermoFit. “With the name change, we are now integrating ThermoFit into the new portfolio and making it clear to customers that we have the right carbon probe extension for every accuracy requirement”.
The third stylus extension in the portfolio is ZEISS REACH CFX 5 - for extreme demands on the precision of measurement results. This precision is achieved by using a high-end carbon fiber that increases rigidity by a further 30% compared to CFX 3.
For Eßwein, the decision to remove aluminum and titanium extensions from the portfolio is only logical and absolutely in the interest of customers. Working with aluminum and titanium extensions therefore means that the potential of the coordinate measuring machine is not fully realized. In all relevant aspects, such as weight, temperature stability and stiffness, the extensions in the ZEISS REACH CFX portfolio are far superior to those made of aluminum and titanium, making them the best choice for ensuring the best possible measuring accuracy.