17IND05 - MicroProbes

Traceable measurements of surface form and property are essential for controlling the use of or assessing the condition of machined parts and tools in high precision mechanical manufacturing machines especially when these components are subject to wear and / or surface contamination. However, technical constraints mean these measurements are currently carried out off-line, which increases the total manufacturing time and cost. In addition, existing optical measurement systems are not adequate for in-line measurement of such components. Therefore, this project will develop new tactile microprobes for reliable and ultrafast, on-the-machine (i.e. in-line) topographical micro-form and roughness measurements that are 30 times faster than conventional methods. The project will also develop fast methods using contact resonance and force-distance curves to measure adhesion, stiffness, friction, coating thickness and to detect contaminants through adhesion contrast.