Confocal microscope

The analysis of surfaces is present in many areas of forming technology and is particularly necessary in research and quality conformance tests. Topographies are examined for their texture and compliance with tolerances. For example, the roughness of a contact surface has a relevant influence on the forming process, which subsequently affects friction and thus the forces of the process. Compliance with tolerances must also be checked regularly in forming technology, whether it is to check the dimensional accuracy of the products or to monitor the wear tolerances of the forming dies.

To modernise its measuring technology, the institute replaced a tactile surface measuring device with the modern Smartproof 5 from ZEISS. The wide-field confocal microscope determines component topographies in a semi-automated process, which can be correlated with process parameters of the forming processes. As the microscope has an accuracy in the lower micrometre range, a high resolution and the analysis of individual microstructural components is guaranteed.