Optics in motion

Sometimes it is useful to move optical components. Scanning a sample in one or two directions can show gradients of thin film properties. Or you may be forced to move a spectrometer system to a calibration position.

With upcoming 3D printers, low cost CNC machines and laser cutters for private use, moving things has become rather cheap. Motion controllers based on Arduino boards can drive payloads at very low costs. Nevertheless, position errors are significantly below one mm which is sufficient for macroscopic optical measurements.

GRBL is the language to talk to Arduino controllers. We have integrated GRBL into SCOUT and CODE to simplify the combination of optical measurements and mechanical motion. You can use script commands to move equipment in up to 3 dimensions and take measurements at any wanted position. This opens up the route to fully automated measurement systems.