Characterisation, Measurement & Analysis
+44(0)1582 764334


  • EMI/EMC Design & Troubleshooting Webinar 23rd September 2020


    We would like to invite you to join a Live Webinar, hosted by our partner Y.I.C. Technologies and presented by Prof. Arturo Mediano*.

    Prof. Mediano will discuss EMI/EMC Design & Troubleshooting. You will enjoy a really practical and useful lecture discovering the fundamentals of practical EMI/EMC design and troubleshooting electronic circuits using near field scanning tools.

    WHEN: Wednesday, 23 September 2020 11:00
    REGISTER: Click here to register

    You can learn a bit more about Y.I.C Technologies and their products here.

    *Arturo Mediano received his M.Sc. (1990) and his Ph. D. (1997) in Electrical Engineering from University of Zaragoza (Spain), where he has held a teaching professorship in EMI/EMC/RF/SI from 1992. He is the founder of The HF-Magic Lab®, a specialised laboratory for design, diagnostic, troubleshooting, and training in the EMI/EMC/SI and RF fields at I3A (University of Zaragoza). Arturo can be reached at

  • Webinar - Understanding Quantum Computing & Communications.

    Governments are investing $billions in our National Labs to facilitate and grow a Quantum Industry.
    Today with our partner Tabor Electronics we are helping Quantum Engineers get off the ground - with our seminar at 7pm today BST!

    7pm BST, 11AM Pacific, 2PM Eastern.

    · What is a Quantum Computer?
    · Some Physics
    · Implementation
    · Control and Measurement
    · Logic Gates and Algorithms
    · Quantum Transportation and Quantum Communications

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  • SAVE 15% on all High Performance Reference Cables from OptoTest

    SAVE 15% on all High Performance Reference Cables from OptoTest. For a limited time, stock up on this essential element of your test setup at a discounted rate – including 24-fiber fanout cables and non-BIMMF cables.


    To speak with a Sales & Applications Engineer please call 01582 764334 or click here to email.

  • OptoTest Releases a Compact Insertion Loss & Return Loss Test System

    OptoTest is proud to announce the latest advancement in MPO/MTP® testing, the OP940-CSW. This compact insertion loss (IL) and return loss (RL) test system features the industry-leading speed and accuracy of the switched OP940 in a new form factor that improves the test process.

    The OP940-CSW is an internally switched IL and RL meter, available in both 12- and 24- fiber variants, designed for MPO/MTP® testing. The front panel design of this benchtop system eliminates the need for fanout cables, which drive up costs and setup time. Having a single connector on the front panel makes multifiber testing a cleaner and more efficient process. This new form factor for multichannel testing, scaled down from a rackmount size, was achieved while maintaining the high-performance standards set by our existing range of IL and RL meters.

    The OP940-CSW is compatible with a host of OptoTest software including OPL-CLX and OPL-Max. DLLs are also available for those wishing to create custom programs. Pair the OP940-CSW with existing products like the OP415 Polarity Analyzer and OPL-CLX Software Suite to create the ultimate MPO/MTP® testing solution.


    To speak with a Sales & Applications Engineer please call 01582 764334 or click here to email.

  • OptoTest Releases Continuous Wave Return Loss & Insertion Loss Meter

    OptoTest unveils its new solution for Insertion Loss (IL) and Return Loss (RL) testing, the OP925. As the most cost-effective IL and RL solution in the product line, the OP925 is built to measure IL, RL, and optical power for single mode or multimode patch cords with the level of ease and accuracy that OptoTest is known for.
    In a deviation from the existing line of IL and RL test systems, the OP925 is a Continuous Wave RL and IL meter. Return Loss measurements are done through the continuous wave reflectometry method (OCWR or CW), while IL measurements follow the standard continuous wave method. The instrument is fully functional through the front panel, with an easy-to-use display that allows for dual wavelength IL and RL testing. With the introduction of continuous wave reflectometry to the product line, OptoTest is better equipped than ever to match customers to their ideal IL and RL test solution.

    The OP925 is compatible with the OptoTest Software Development Kit (OPL-SDK). This allows users to create custom programs to control the OP925 in a variety of languages.

    To speak with a Sales & Applications Engineer please call 01582 764334 or click here to email.

  • Advanced Microwave Topics for Quantum Physicists - Tabor Webinar

    This seminar covers microwave control systems, which include methods of synthesis, pulse shaping and modulation techniques used in both semiconductor and photon based qubits. We will also cover analog signal generation techniques common in many systems today, plus direct to microwave digital signal generation and measurement based on new DAC and ADC technology.

    Learn about:

    • Wave Behaviour – Propagation of waves through different cables and lengths will cause delays.
    • Frequency Translation – Increase in non-linear products and phase noise.
    • Synthesis – Understand methods of synthesis - benefits and trade-offs of each.
    • Modulation – IQ Modulators – How to Drive them and to balance and null them.
    • Frequency Planning – Avoiding Feedthrough, Harmonics and Spurs.
    • Analysis – Different methods and their trade-offs.

    To speak with a Sales & Applications Engineer please call 01582 764334 or click here to email.

  • Optimizing Peak-to-Average Power Ratio for Wireless Systems - Tabor Webinar


    The signals used in today’s most advanced communication technologies can employ various modulation and multiplexing techniques to optimize different parameters, such as spectral efficiency, susceptibility to interference, and data rate. Correspondingly, these signals can have widely varying peak-to-average power ratios (PAPRs). Careful consideration must be taken with regard to PAPR. If it is too high, it can lead to spectral spreading or regrowth. However, lowering power can lead to less efficient operation of critical components like power amplifiers. This webinar will explain how to use advanced arbitrary waveform generators to create signals with varying PAPRs and how to simply and cost-effectively measure PAPR utilizing RF peak power sensors throughout an RF transmission chain to make trade-offs for optimal system performance.


    To speak with a Sales & Applications Engineer please call 01582 764334 or click here to email.

  • Laser Interferometry – An Enabling Technology For Optimized Automated Manufacturing

    Precision Beryllium mirror manufacturer, Cambridge Technology, explains how the use of best-in-class interferometry hardware and software solutions has streamlined its manufacturing processes and added efficiencies as well as time and cost-savings across the company.


    Author: Tyler Steele Product Manager Laser Interferometer Products, Zygo Corporation

    Technological advances over recent years have elevated metrology from being a “necessary evil” in manufacturing scenarios to enabling technologies, allowing the measurement of previously impossible part characteristics and therefore driving innovation across numerous industry sectors.

    It is arguable that best-in-class metrology solutions are the catalyst that drive the trend towards miniaturization, higher precision, faster throughput, and fewer rejects. As the old adage goes, “If you can’t measure it you can’t make it”, but if you can measure to the required accuracy repeatably, then the sky is the limit in terms of producing cutting-edge parts and components.

    One company operating on the bleeding-edge of precision is Cambridge Technology, based in Taunton in the United Kingdom. Cambridge Technology boasts an over 50-year pedigree manufacturing ultra-lightweight coated beryllium mirrors for its parent facility in Bedford, MA, USA. These mirrors which are integrated into laser beam steering assemblies are used in various applications from PCB drilling to laser eye surgery.

    Cambridge Technology had a goal to advance its design and manufacturing capabilities with a focus on integrating and leveraging process metrology to optimize quality control and manufacturing yields.

    The exacting nature of the mirrors manufactured by Cambridge Technology has meant that over time, it has learned to partner with innovative technology suppliers to enable optimal manufacturing processes. The company chosen to help advance its metrology capabilities was ZYGO, which supplied Cambridge Technology with new state-of-the-art laser interferometer systems operating on ZYGO’s Mx metrology software.

    This article analyses the role of laser interferometry as an integral part of an optimized automated manufacturing process, highlighting key issues in supplier selection and providing first-hand testimony from Cambridge Technology as to how it used ZYGO's advanced optical metrology solutions to advance innovation in product design and manufacturing process development.


    Assessing the Advanced Metrology Landscape

    ZYGO has elevated the status of metrology to a disruptive, enabling technology, with its non-contact, non-destructive 3D optical profilers and laser interferometers.

    Optical metrology is extremely versatile and has an important role in the verification of quality and design intent.  Today, in many scenarios, it has become the preferred solution, benefitting from the fact that it is non-contact (meaning it can be used to measure delicate deformable components), non-destructive, fast, highly sensitive, and exhibits exceptional resolution and accuracy characteristics.

    For ZYGO, however, the use of its optical metrology instruments goes well beyond quality control as its benefits are being utilized in advanced R & D, process development, process control, and overall manufacturing optimization.

    Cambridge Technology understands that interferometry is the logical choice for the advanced characterization of its critical parts and recognized that there are no other metrology solution innovators that came close to matching the level of experience and understanding of ZYGO.

    Mx instrument controller software enables automated acquisition and analysis with user-friendly built-in tools, and extended flexibility and customization through integrated Python scripting.


    Cambridge Technology and ZYGO’s Laser Interferometry

    Cambridge Technology uses laser interferometry to measure the surface form of almost every precision beryllium mirror it manufacturers, and at various stages in the production lifecycle for a clear understanding of performance characteristics.

    The company’s original laser interferometry solution was seen as being deficient in two key areas. First, it was prone to environmental vibrations, and second measurement data was stored as individual text files (or text reports) which meant that it was extremely difficult to analyse.

    Each unique mirror in the Cambridge Technology range required a different application which in turn required specific configuration of the laser interferometer. This made the metrology operator-intensive, and required technicians to manually load different masks for each mirror type and for every measurement performed, sometimes three times per mirror.

    To overcome these deficiencies, the company required a metrology solution that would promote process automation and relieve manual workload pressure while minimizing sensitivity to environmental vibration which had led to some mirrors requiring remeasuring.

    The solution chosen was to replace existing laser interferometers with current generation instruments operating on ZYGO's Mx software, which immediately allowed the company to realize improvements in processing times and a reduction in operator errors.

    Greg Salter, Quality Engineer at Cambridge Technology continues, “The reduction in processing times comes as a result of our ability to customize Mx™ using scripting. The reduced processing times for parts with multiple masks (apertures) has been a massive improvement, along with the removal of the necessity of operators from having to manually load each mask, or having to select different parts of a mask to re-analyze different apertures of a mirror.”

    Using ZYGO’s Mx™ software and Python scripts, Cambridge Technology now has a database of all its parts, with corresponding tolerances, settings and masks that is easily selectable by the operator.  Tolerances can be adjusted remotely in a centrally located database by the production engineer without disrupting the production workflow.

    Salter explains, “MX loads the correct masks and tolerances for each part automatically by selecting the part number from a drop-down menu. The ZYGO laser interferometer software can now automatically load and swap different masks during measurement without operator input, which means measurement is quicker, throughput of mirrors is increased, and operator errors have been reduced. The flatness data automatically outputs to a database for easy analysis and monitoring of each stage of manufacturing (SPC etc…). This has already enabled us to use control limits at various manufacturing stages to ensure that the mirrors will be compliant at the end of the manufacturing process. As we continually improve our methods of manufacture, the analysis that this system provides will enable us to gradually reduce how many mirrors we inspect per batch of mirrors, whilst still providing flatness compliance.”

    “If a mirror is not suitable for the application for which it was intended, Mx™ can check similar mirror types and advise if we can use that mirror for an alternative application thus reducing scrap. Our parent company in Bedford, MA, USA also uses our database to control their ZYGO interferometers, it gets instantly updated at both sites simultaneously, which has once and for all ironed out discrepancies between our methods of measurement. Our parent company also stores measurement data so we can monitor mirror performance as it progresses through manufacturing. All of this is achieved using the ability of Mx to allow us to customize how it works by using Python scripts to adapt to our required methods.”

    It was vital that whatever software solution Cambridge Technology chose could be deployed over multiple instruments across manufacturing facilities in multiple locations to support a 24/7 manufacturing operation. Minimizing the amount of downtime and levels of operator training were a must, and this was achieved through a good partnership between ZYGO and Cambridge Technology.

    Salter explains. “We found MX™ to be a simple, efficient, and supportable solution that minimized impact on resources and capacity within the manufacturing environment. The intuitive design of Mx and its overall simplicity were hugely important, as was the help and assistance from Lambda Photometrics and ZYGO with our particular issues and requirements when it came to problems we were unsure how to overcome, especially with python scripts. Lambda and ZYGO provided an understanding of how to achieve certain goals using python (including sending us code examples), and providing us with a way of using a catalogue of existing Mx masks on the new interferometer.”


    Creating a “Set-and-Forget” Application Software Environment

    The use of the scripting function within ZYGO’s Mx™ software has allowed Cambridge Technology to create a recipe driven “set-and-forget” application.

    “This was achieved by utilising a database which we designed and built to work within Mx™, containing all of the parameters required to enable the measurement of any mirror. These include mask names, number of masks and flatness tolerances. All the operator has to do is select a part number from a list (or scan a barcode on our manufacturing datapack) and Mx applies the predetermined settings for that particular mirror prescription, records its a serial number, acquires and analyses the data and informs the operator if it is a pass or a fail in simple terms,” Salter explains.

    “With ZYGO's Mx-based metrology instruments our configuration control is much more efficient and we now have the ability to embark on a statistical process control (SPC) methodology for monitoring our operations.  ZYGO's solutions have helped us drive our mirror yields up to 99% with excellent correlation between our two sites."



    Using ZYGO’s Mx™ metrology software, Cambridge Technology has now upgraded the capabilities of its interferometers, realizing significant savings. This has led to the company being able to realize cost savings by removing bottlenecks in production and quality control, and in turn has provided better utilization of staff resources and an overall improvement in manufacturing efficiencies.


    About the Author

    Tyler Steele is the Product Manager of ZYGO’s Laser Interferometer products. Tyler studied optical engineering at the University of Arizona between 2006 and 2009, joining ZYGO in 2009 as an Applications Engineer. In 2012 he became Associate Product Manager for Laser Interferometers before taking on the role of Product Manager in 2015.


    To speak with a Sales & Applications Engineer please call 01582 764334 or click here to email.

  • SMARTTECH3D Metrology - 3D Scanners

    Send in your samples for a free of charge scan or book an online product demo for the White Light Scanning System.


    SMARTTECH3D Metrology - 3D scanners are well-known experts in the 3D measurement industry with a wide range of accurate 3D scanners – contactless 3D measurement.

    Click here to see a video of the new 3D Scanner MICRON3D Colour 10Mpix

    Alternating patterns of light are beamed from the projector onto the desired part, these patterns are recorded by the camera and used to create surface measurements. The white light scanner system not only scans the object surface but also creates a fully texture mapped point cloud in full colour.

    The new 3D Scanner MICRON3D Colour 10Mpix offers:

    • Ultra-precise high resolution 3D scanner
    • Ability to scan shape of objects with real texture (points cloud with X,Y,Z and RGB)
    • Accuracy certified according to German VDI/VDE standard.
    • Easy & fast change of measurement volume with exchangeable lenses
    • User-friendly SMARTTECH3Dmeasure software enables a quick start and guaranties optimal data processing
    • Full carbon fibre housing of 3D scanner
    • Highest quality components: high resolution and sensitive colour cameras

    For further information regarding sending your sample or booking an online demo  please contact us on 01582 764334 or click here to email.


    About Lambda Photometrics Ltd
    Lambda Photometrics is a leading UK Distributor of Characterisation, Measurement and Analysis solutions with particular expertise in Electronic/Scientific and Analytical Instrumentation, Laser and Light based products, Optics, Electro-optic Testing, Spectroscopy, Machine Vision, Optical Metrology, Fibre Optics and Microscopy.

    About SMARTTECH Ltd
    SMARTTECH3D is a recognised Polish manufacturer of 3D scanners in the world. The company was founded in 2000. The company's offer includes a full range of professional non-contact measuring devices for various applications, quality control, and reverse engineering software. SMARTTECH provides design-implementation services for advanced machine vision systems and 3D measurement services around the world. Satisfied customers include NASA, Boeing, Lufthansa, Orlen, Military Police, KRONES, Central Office of Measures as well as many educational units.

  • Bringing advanced automation to the forefront in the NEW Phenom XL G2 Desktop SEM

    Over the years, scanning electron microscopes (SEMs) have served as an important tool for quality control. Many of our Industrial Partners use SEMs to investigate defects and impurities at the microscopic level, to make accurate adjustments to the production process. Ensuring every product is built to the same high-quality standards.

    In the past, researchers have been required to perform the same repetitive steps to analyse every object; consuming valuable time, slowing down the production process, and increasing the risk of human error.

    New automation solutions within desktop SEMs are helping to solve these problems. Phenom desktop SEMs make it possible for users to perform in-house quality control while automating the repetitive steps in their workflows. The newly available Phenom XL G2 Desktop SEM takes automation to the next level; giving you the flexibility to customise the system and relay fast accurate information back to your team.

    The Phenom XL G2 Desktop SEM offers a versatile solution for automating the quality control process. Users can obtain high-quality images in just 40 seconds—three times faster than other desktop SEM systems on the market. Offering an improved resolution of 10 nanometers, the system enables more resolving power and the ability to explore large samples of up to 100 by 100 millimeters.

    The highly intuitive system extends quality checks to a broader number of users.

    A key feature of the Phenom XL G2 is its easy-to-use, intuitive user interface (UI) combining two screens into one for viewing images and performing analysis. With one simple click on the impurity, users can see what elements are present using the live energy-dispersive X-ray (EDS) analysis. The optical navigation camera makes it possible to view the entire sample while the user is in SEM mode.

    Requiring little lab space, the Phenom XL G2’s condensed size allows users to place the microscope exactly where it’s needed—whether that’s in the lab or on the production line for real-time analyses.

    With the Phenom XL G2, quality control managers can automate their repetitive workflow needed to analyse particles, pores, fibres, and large SEM images. The result is faster, more accurate analysis, more time for value-added work, and the assurance that only the highest quality products make it into customers’ hands.

    CLICK HERE to download the Phenom XL G2 datasheet.


    For further information, application support, demo or quotation requests  please contact us on 01582 764334 or click here to email.

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