Galvanometer scanner is a motorized mirror mounts used in scanning applications. They are different than electrical measuring devices called galvanometers.

Closed loop galvanometer scanners consist of magnet-based rotary motors with a high-precision optical position detector to provide fast, accurate scanning. Because of their precision, closed loop galvanometer scanners are used to position mirrors for the deflection of lasers.

Open loop galvanometer scanners, or galvos, are also used in optics applications, but because they don?t use a positioning sensor, galvos are used only in applications that require less accuracy.

Galvanometer scanners are constructed with rotary motors that use precision ball bearings to provide smooth movement with very low friction. The galvanometer scanner assembly is contained in a stiff housing to minimize any wobbling or vibration due to motion. The optical position detector system may include temperature sensors to monitor fluctuations in ambient temperature. Galvanometer scanners may function on a single axis or may be configured to work in two dimensions on a dual axis system. Some galvanometer scanning systems may also work on multiple axes. Galvanometer scanners are commonly used to control many types of optoelectronics, including laser-based medical devices, high resolution imaging and printing, and semiconductor processing. They are also used in both ultraviolet (UV) and visible light laser systems.

Galvanometer scanners can be used in laser projectors in conjunction with a scanner amplifier. The scanner amplifier conditions and amplifies the control signal originating from the computer or control unit of the laser projector and makes it compatible with the galvanometer scanner. Laser projectors are used to draw laser graphics during concerts or presentations. Laser projectors require two galvanometer scanners, one oriented on an X-axis, the other on the Y-axis. One galvanometer scanner moves the beam horizontally, the other moves it vertically. When selecting laser projectors, the capabilities of galvanometer scanners is an important consideration.

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Ref: 122467/2006-09-26

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