(19)
(11)EP 3 118 577 B1

(12)EUROPEAN PATENT SPECIFICATION

(45)Mention of the grant of the patent:
26.06.2019 Bulletin 2019/26

(21)Application number: 15177314.0

(22)Date of filing:  17.07.2015
(51)International Patent Classification (IPC): 
G01C 15/00(2006.01)
G01C 25/00(2006.01)

(54)

CALIBRATION DEVICE AND CALIBRATION METHOD FOR A LASER BEAM HORIZONTAL TRUENESS TESTING DEVICE

KALIBRIERUNGSVORRICHTUNG UND KALIBRIERUNGSVERFAHREN FÜR EINE VORRICHTUNG ZUM PRÜFEN DER HORIZONTALEN RICHTIGKEIT EINES LASERSTRAHLS

DISPOSITIF ET PROCÉDÉ D'ÉTALONNAGE POUR DISPOSITIF DE TEST DE L'EXACTITUDE D'UN FAISCEAU LASER


(84)Designated Contracting States:
AL AT BE BG CH CY CZ DE DK EE ES FI FR GB GR HR HU IE IS IT LI LT LU LV MC MK MT NL NO PL PT RO RS SE SI SK SM TR

(43)Date of publication of application:
18.01.2017 Bulletin 2017/03

(73)Proprietor: Leica Geosystems AG
9435 Heerbrugg (CH)

(72)Inventors:
  • DUMOULIN, Charles Leopold Elisabeth
    9436 Balgach (CH)
  • BRODER, Katherine
    9491 Ruggell (LI)

(74)Representative: Kaminski Harmann 
Patentanwälte AG Landstrasse 124
9490 Vaduz
9490 Vaduz (LI)


(56)References cited: : 
EP-A1- 2 741 049
US-B1- 6 178 649
DE-A1-102007 039 343
US-B1- 6 539 638
  
  • Thorlabs: "Cylindrical Kinematic V-Clamp", Large Clamping Arm ROTATES 10° HeNe Lasers, 2007, pages 70-140, XP055242857, Thorlabs catalog V19 Retrieved from the Internet: URL:http://www.thorlabs.com/catalogPages/1 99.pdf [retrieved on 2016-01-19]
 
Remarks:
The file contains technical information submitted after the application was filed and not included in this specification
 
Note: Within nine months from the publication of the mention of the grant of the European patent, any person may give notice to the European Patent Office of opposition to the European patent granted. Notice of opposition shall be filed in a written reasoned statement. It shall not be deemed to have been filed until the opposition fee has been paid. (Art. 99(1) European Patent Convention).


Description


[0001] The invention relates to a calibration method for calibration of a laser beam horizontal trueness testing device according to claim 1, and a calibration system according to claim 13.

[0002] Laser beam projection apparatuses, such as, for example, point lasers, line lasers or in particular rotation lasers, are used in particular in construction or interior finishing, for example for vertically marking walls. A rotation laser marks a reference plane by means of its rotating laser beam. In this case, the laser beam itself can be emitted for example in a punctiform, linear or fan-shaped fashion. The laser light can be generated as continuous light or in a pulsed fashion. What is important here is that the laser beam is emitted with plane trueness, in particular horizontal trueness, that is to say that it remains exactly in the envisaged plane, in order to be able to preclude incorrect markings. In order to ensure this, conventional lasers of this type are generally equipped with a beam self-leveling functionality. A first adjustment of the horizontal trueness and calibration of the beam self-leveling functionality are typically carried out by the manufacturer prior to delivery of the laser.

[0003] At regular intervals or as required, it is necessary to test and recalibrate the plane trueness and/or horizontal trueness of the laser and the beam self-leveling functionality thereof and, if appropriate, to readjust the laser because the adjustment of the laser can change as a result of various external influences, such as, for example, temperature and moisture fluctuations, mechanical shocks, vibrations, etc.

[0004] For fulfilling this task, laser beam horizontal trueness testing devices are known and described in the prior art. These known devices usually comprise, as basic components, a telescope and an position sensitive detector for capturing the laser beam of the laser beam projection apparatus and determining out of the impinging position of the laser beam on the detector, if a deviation of an ideal orientation of the laser beam particularly with regard to its horizontality exists which makes a readjustment necessary. For example, such a laser beam horizontal trueness testing device is disclosed in EP 2741049 of 5.12.2012 by the same applicant.

[0005] As such a laser beam horizontal trueness testing device is also subject to said external influences, its precision might also diminish, e.g. after special events like shocks or temperature cycling due to a transport of the device. This might have the effect that the assumed point of true horizontality (level point) as defined by the current calibration parameters is not the real point of true horizontality. Therefore, verification of the calibration or to say a new calibration of the testing device itself can be necessary. For fulfilling this task, regular laser beam projection apparatuses are not suitable even if as accurate as specified and not maladjusted. This is, among other reasons, caused by the precision grade of these apparatuses which is not set up/designed to fulfill such a task, due e.g. errors introduced by the ball bearings of a rotational laser.

[0006] In contrast, it is possible to (re-)calibrate a laser beam horizontal trueness testing device using a total station, which is capable of providing a laser beam with the required precision. However, it has to be assured that the total station itself has not been subject to external influences which have deteriorated this complex instrument. Further disadvantages are the significant costs of a total station or of a similar device and their complexity that necessitates a specialized skilled person for handling.

[0007] It is therefore an object of the present invention to provide a simple and economical device for calibration of a laser beam horizontal trueness testing device.

[0008] A further object is to provide a method for such a calibration device for calibration of a laser beam horizontal trueness testing device

[0009] These objects are achieved by the realization of the characterizing features of the independent claims. Features which develop the invention in an alternative or advantageous manner can be gathered from the dependent patent claims.

[0010] The invention provides a calibration method with a calibration device for calibration of a laser beam horizontal trueness testing device. The laser beam horizontal trueness testing device is designed for testing the horizontal trueness of an incoming laser beam and comprises a telescope, an inherent inclination compensator and a position sensitive detector for detecting an impinging position of a laser beam in dependency of the entry angle of the laser beam with regard to the horizontal. The laser beam horizontal trueness testing device is designed for verifying, and possibly carrying out a quantification of, a laser beam horizontal trueness, possibly with a translation of the determined impinging position on the position sensitive detector into a laser beam inclination value on the basis of a translation rule, related to calibration parameters dependent on a position of the position sensitive detector in the telescope. A point of true horizontality on the positions sensitive detector indicates a laser beam of true horizontality. The definition of this point of true horizontality to be represented by calibration parameters is the main objective of calibration.

[0011] The calibration device according to the invention comprises an elongated laser housing with a longitudinal axis, containing a laser source. The alignment of the laser source is such that a laser beam is emittable by the laser source at least roughly in direction of the longitudinal axis i.e. the optical axis of the laser source is at least roughly parallel resp. identical to the longitudinal axis. The calibration device further comprises an elongated support body serving for support of the laser housing. The support body comprises at least three points of support which define a support array with a defined inserted direction for insertion of the laser housing whereby the longitudinal axis is parallel to the inserted direction. Therefore, the support body has a predetermined direction for insertion of the laser housing. The size and shape of the laser housing is matched to the support array in such a way that the laser housing is insertable into the support array in a first face in at least two different rotational positions and in a second opposing face in at least one rotational position with the longitudinal axis as axis of rotation each. In other words, in addition to a rotation around the longitudinal axis, the laser housing can also be flipped over so that the laser source is pointing to the other side. Each contact area at the points of support in direction orthogonal to the longitudinal axis is punctiform.

[0012] The device designed in said way has the effect that in each face and each rotational position of the laser housing the laser housing rests position-stable and self-centered due to gravity in the support array and the position of the longitudinal axis is equal.

[0013] This means that due to the size and shape of the laser housing and the support body according to the invention there are at least three highly stable and well defined different positions available for the laser housing in the support body whereby the longitudinal axis remains unchanged when changing the laser housing from one face resp. rotational position to another.

[0014] Advantageously, the laser housing and/or the support body are precision ground, smooth and surface hardened. Optionally, the laser housing and/or the support body are single piece units, preferably made of a single piece of high-speed steel, glass or ceramics and optionally made of a material with a low coefficient of thermal expansion, e.g. in the range of 0 to 9.10-6 K-1 (absolute value) .

[0015] Optionally, the support body is designed as a block with a v-shaped and the laser housing is designed as a straight cylinder. Alternatively, the support body is designed as a block with a u-shaped support array or as two bars parallel to each other and to the inserted direction, and the laser housing is designed as a straight cylinder or a straight prism. This or similar designs have the objective to provide points of support that form (two) lines parallel to the inserted direction resp. parallel to the longitudinal axis of the laser housing, whereby each line may have gaps in between. Alternatively the points of support are designed as single points spaced to each other, which is for example achieved by a support body comprising single spheres or balls which provide the support points. Also, both alternatives may be mixed e.g. in such a way that one side of the laser housing is supported by a line of support points and the other side is supported by one or more single support points, wherefore one part of the support body provides a plane area and the other one or more spheres.

[0016] In accordance with one possible embodiment of the invention, both ends of the laser housing are enclosed by a sleeve each, whereby the sleeves are precision ground, smooth and surface hardened. Thus, the laser housing comprises two rings of the same diameter of limited width that are ground circular. Optionally, each sleeve is designed as the race of a bearing or as a fixed ball bearing.

[0017] As an option, the laser source is designed as a line laser. As another option, the alignment of the laser source is adjustable, e.g. by adjustment unit at its fixation to the laser housing, wherefore the direction of the laser beam is adjustable.

[0018] In accordance with one possible embodiment of the invention, the laser housing comprises at least one marking on its external surface for indication of at least one rotational position. Preferably, the laser housing comprises two markings indicating two rotational positions which are separated by 180°. Advantageously, the two markings are clearly distinguishable, which allows a user or a sensor to clearly distinguish both rotational positions. Optionally, the laser housing comprises even more marks which mark defined rotational positions, e.g. six marks spaced 60° to each other. The marks are optionally designed as an alignment reticle.

[0019] In accordance with another possible embodiment of the invention, the support body comprises at each end a stopper plate as limitations of the support array in the inserted direction, which facilitates the insertion of the laser housing. Advantageously, one stopper plate comprises alignment slots or alternatively a single mark for defined alignment of the laser housing to the support array, whereby optionally the alignment slots (or the alignment mark) are matched with alignment marks of the laser housing.

[0020] The calibration method according to the invention is carried out using the calibration device as described above. The method involves determining an impinging position of the laser beam of the laser source on the position sensitive detector with the laser housing in at least two different rotational positions of a first face and at least one rotational position of a second opposing face each, resulting in a first, second and at least a third impinging position, and determining calibration parameters, particularly calibration parameters representing the point of true horizontality, based on the first, second and third impinging position.

[0021] Through the measurement of at least three impinging positions for at least two different rotational positions and in two opposing faces (180°-flip over of the laser housing) and due to the unchanged longitudinal axis achieved by the design of the calibration device according to the invention, uncertainties regarding the direction of the laser beam are cancelled out, in such a way that so to say in "average" a perfectly horizontal laser beam is obtained, wherefore out of all three impinging positions calibration parameters are determinable, particularly calibration parameters describing the point of true horizontality resp. the point of true horizontality itself.

[0022] Optionally, the calibration method involves determining not only one, but at least two impinging positions of the laser beam with the laser housing in at least two different rotational positions in the second opposing face each, resulting in the third and additonally a fourth impinging position, and determining calibration parameters from an average of the first, second, third and fourth impinging position.

[0023] Alternatively or additionally, the method involves canceling out a cone error of the laser source based on two impinging positions of the laser beam with the laser housing in at least two different rotational positions in one face, whereby the rotational angle between the two different rotational positions is known. Preferably, the known rotational angle is

Cone error means an error resulting from a laser beam not perfectly aligned to the longitudinal axis of the laser housing, e.g. due to a sloping fixation of the laser source in the laser housing, wherefore the laser beam direction in one rotational position is slightly different to its direction in another rotational position. As part of canceling out the cone error, the cone error itself is optionally also determined such that its concrete value is measured. Instead of two rotational positions with a known angle in between, at least three impinging positions for at least three different rotational positions, preferably with maximum distance between them, of the laser housing are determined whereby the rotational angles in between need not to be known for canceling out resp. determining a cone error.

[0024] Alternatively or additionally, the method involves canceling out (or determining) a plane error of the laser source based on the impinging positions of the laser beam in the first and in the second opposing face. Plane error means a deviation from a perfectly leveled position of the laser source, e.g. due to a tilt of the laser housing or the support body. If the rotational position (with regard to the longitudinal axis) is defined resp. known, at least one impinging position in the second face is measured. If the rotational position is not defined, at least two impinging positions for two different rotational positions in the second face are measured.

[0025] In other words at least three impinging positions are determined, therein two impinging positions in the same face for two different rotational positions. Depending on whether rotational positions are well-defined resp. known or not, further impinging positions are facultative or mandatory.

[0026] In a further development of the calibration method, the method involves determining at least one additional impinging position of the laser beam of the laser source on the position sensitive detector for a known rotational position in azimuthal direction of the laser beam horizontal trueness testing device different to the rotational position of the laser beam horizontal trueness testing device underlying at least one other impinging position. This variation of the orientation of the laser beam horizontal trueness testing device is used for determining calibration parameters representing a yaw angle of the position sensitive detector (rotation of the detector), based on the additional impinging position. Particularly, two additional impinging positions for two rotational positions of the laser housing are measured. By this further development of the calibration, the calibration method allows not only determining calibration parameters representing a position of the position sensitive detector with respect to translation, but also with respect to rotation.

[0027] Optionally, the calibration method involves a pre-step before determining an (first) impinging position. The pre-step comprises orienting the laser beam of the laser source to the preciously defined center of the position sensitive detector, whereby the center is defined by the currently available, so to say "old" calibration parameters. This ensures that plane and cone are near to level at the onset of the test (under the condition of course, that the real/current center resp. level point of the detector that is to be "found" by the present calibration has not drifted exorbitantly from the center as represent by the "old" calibration parameters). This reduces potential nonlinearities caused by the detector orientation and/or optical units.

[0028] As another option, the cone error is explicitly determined as described above and in the case, that the cone error exceeds a certain limit, e.g. is bigger than 20 or 30 seconds of arc, it is reduced by adjusting the laser beam, preferably in both horizontal (yaw) and vertical angle (pitch). If the laser source is designed in such a way that the laser beam is line-shaped, the rotational angle between to rotational positions of the laser housing is optionally determined based on the orientation of the laser line on the position sensitive detector in each rotational position.

[0029] A further subject of the invention is a computer program product having program code which is stored on a machine-readable carrier, for controlling and carrying out the method for calibration according to the invention.

[0030] Another subject of the invention is a system comprising a calibration device according to the invention and a computer program product according to the invention. Optionally, the system further comprises a laser beam horizontal trueness testing device as described above, whereby the laser beam horizontal trueness testing device comprises a control unit designed to execute the program code of the computer program product.

[0031] Another subject of the invention is the use of a calibration device according to the invention for calibration of a laser beam horizontal trueness testing as described above.

[0032] In an alternative example of the calibration device for a laser beam horizontal trueness testing device, the laser beam horizontal trueness testing device comprising an inherent inclination compensator and a position sensitive detector for detecting an impinging position of a laser beam in dependency of the entry angle of the laser beam with regard to the horizontal, the calibration device comprises a laser housing with a longitudinal axis, a laser source and a compensator. The alignment of the laser source is such that a laser beam is emittable by the laser source at least roughly in direction of the longitudinal axis. The compensator levels the laser beam horizontally and virtually eliminates the plane error. In a preferred example, the compensator is designed as an optomechanical self-leveler having an optomechanical element, in a simple case e.g. as a bubble sensor or vial, for the self-leveling of the optical axis of the laser, said optomechanical element being arranged in the laser beam path inside the laser housing, or as an electronic inclination considerer having a high-precision inclination sensor for ascertaining a inclination value of the laser housing dependent on a current inclination position of the laser housing. Further, the laser housing is positioned on a unit, which is rotatable in azimuthal direction, with an angular position measurement system, by which the laser housing is orientatable in different azimuthal directions with known azimuthal angles (e.g using an electronic encoder). In other words, the laser beam is emittable in defined different horizontal directions.

[0033] Preferably, the rotatable unit is a turntable with an angular position measurement system such as an angular encoder. It is obviously to a person skilled in the art, that features like the compensator or turntable can be combined with embodiments as described above. The alternative calibration method in accordance with the alternative example of the calibration device involves determining an impinging position of the laser beam of the laser source on the position sensitive detector of the laser beam horizontal trueness testing device with the laser housing in a first azimuthal orientation and in a first rotational position and a second opposing rotational position each, whereby the laser housing is in a first azimuthal orientation and a first face. This results in a first and second impinging position. The calibration method involves further cancelling out resp. determining a cone error of the laser source based on the first and second impinging position. The method involves further determining an impinging position of the laser beam of the laser source on the position sensitive detector with the laser housing in at least one rotational position of a second opposing face, resulting in a third impinging position, and determining calibration parameters representing the point of true horizontality based on the first, second and third impinging position. Further, at least a fourth impinging position of the laser beam of the laser source on the position sensitive detector is determined, whereby the laser housing is in a second azimuthal orientation different to the first one. The level variation of the laser beam while turning from the first to the second azimuthal orientation (plane error) is corrected for by the compensator. The known azimuth positions can be provided for by an electronical encoder or by means of known mechanical stop positions. Calibration parameters are determined representing the yaw angle and the scale of the positions sensitive detector, based on the first, second and fourth impinging position. Scale of the position sensitive detector refers to the capability of the laser beam horizontal trueness testing device not only to detect a deviation of a laser beam from horizontal trueness, but also to quantify the extent of that deviation of a laser beam from horizontal trueness. As an option, the determination of a second impinging position in the second opposing face and accordingly a cone error based on the first and second impinging position is skipped.

[0034] The present invention provides advantageously a calibration device and a calibration method for (re-) calibration of a laser beam horizontal trueness testing device at the user's resp. in the field. The calibration device and the according calibration method provides in particular the advantage that a (re-) calibration can be done in a simple, short and therefore cost-effective way and nevertheless with the precision necessary for a laser beam horizontal trueness testing device. In contrast to a sophisticated device like a total station which might also be suitable for a calibration, the calibration device according to the invention is uncomplicated and considerably less costly. Due to its very simple and straight-forward structure and thus the non-necessity of fasteners or the like prone to aging, the proposed calibration device is trouble-free and not prone resp. permissive to errors resulting from manufacturing or external influences. The system according to the invention comprising the calibration device and laser beam horizontal trueness testing device with a control unit designed for executing the according calibration procedure is easy to use even for non-specialized users.

[0035] The device according to the invention and the method according to the invention are in this case furthermore described in greater detail purely by way of example below on the basis of concrete exemplary embodiments illustrated schematically in the drawings, further advantages of the invention also being discussed. Specifically in the figures:
figures 1a-c
show different views of an embodiment of a calibration device according to the invention;
figure 2
shows a cross section view of a second embodiment of a calibration device according to the invention;
figure 3
shows a further development of the embodiment of figures 1a-c of a calibration device according to the invention;
figure 4
shows a detail of an embodiment of a laser housing of a calibration device according to the invention; and
figures 5a-d
show schematically a calibration method according to the invention.


[0036] Figure 1a-1c show one possible embodiment of a calibration device 1 according to the invention for calibration of a laser beam horizontal trueness testing device. It comprises an elongated v-groove bearing block (v-block) 4 as a support body, which in this example is positioned on a levelling base 5, and an elongated laser drum 3 with a longitudinal axis A as a laser housing. Figure 1a is a 3D-view where the v-block 4 and the laser drum 3 are drawn separated from each other for overview purposes. Figure 1b is a 3D-cross section view along the length of the drum 3 and the v-block 4, sectioned along a zy-plane, figure 1c is a 2D-cross section view, sectioned along the zx-plane. In figures 1b and 1c the laser drum 3 is in its intended position for the calibration process according to the invention, lying onto the v-block 4. The v-block 4 is holding the laser drum 3. The optional levelling base 5 allows levelling the device 1 at setup. The levelling of the v-block 4 does not need to be precise as the levelling plane is determined during the measurement process as described below (see figures 5a-5d).

[0037] The laser drum 3 is in principle a strung-out hollow cylinder with a laser source 2 in the center of its end 6a, such that the laser beam from the laser source 2 propagates along the inner of the cylinder (y-direction) before leaving the laser drum 3 and at least roughly in direction of the longitudinal axis A. Preferably, the drum 3 is made of a single piece of precision ground, smooth and preferably (surface) hardened material like high speed steel, ceramics or glass. As a further option, in addition materials are chosen with low coefficient of thermal expansion like special ceramics. The manufacturing of the laser drum 3 can be done as a single piece in one setup at low to moderate cost. The laser drum 3 only requires two rings of the same diameter of limited width that are ground circular. In the preferred embodiment as shown, both ends 6a, 6b of the drum 3 are fitted with an inner race of a needle bearing 9a, 9b, which is hardened, precision ground and a low cost of the shelve component. The drum 3 is resting on to the bearing races inside the v-block 4, wherefore the size of the laser drum 3 and the v-block 4 are matched to each other such that the laser drum 3 rests stable onto the v-block 4 solely by gravity without any connection means. A preferable value for the length of the laser drum 3 and accordingly the v-block 4 is about 150mm-200mm. A greater length makes the positioning of the laser drum 3 more stable but results in a more bulky device. In other words, the longer the v-block 4, the lower the accuracy requirements on the components used but the less handy is the apparatus.

[0038] It is possible to manufacture the laser drum 3 composed of sub components. For instance, the center of the drum 3 can consist of a simple aluminum pipe. On to each end of the pipe a seat is machined to hold a common deep groove roller bearing. Two roller bearings are pressed on to the pipe. Each roller bearing is specially treated, to prevent the outer race of the roller bearing from rotating. Such a treatment can for instance be simple degreasing of the roller bearing followed by a gluing step where the outer bearing is glued against the inner bearing. Another method of securing the outer race to the inner race could be a mechanical clamping mechanism. Instead of using bearings, pre-ground solid rings are used (for instance the inner or outer races only). As a further alternative, the alignment and accuracy of the guiding surfaces of the laser drum 3 are machined once more in a final machining step. The different manufacturing solutions are tradeoffs between accuracy, availability and cost. The in-accuracies introduced by manufacturing tolerances are fixed with the each component. These deviations will not change with thermal cycling wherefore these deviations can be determined ex-factory in a calibration step.

[0039] The v-block 4 is also precision ground, smooth, hardened and an off-the-shelve-part. The v-block 4 can be easily ground as a single block in one setup and machined with high accuracy. Since the machining of the v-block 4 is relatively easy, it can be produced at low to moderate cost. For the v-block 4 similar material choices apply: hardened, precision ground and preferably low thermal expansion coefficient.

[0040] The parts (v-block 4, drum 3) need to be made with moderate to high precision. Assuming the drum 3 has a centering tolerance difference of 20 µm. A thermal expansion coefficient of 20·10-6 results in a 0.4nm centering change per °C. Depending on the length of the drum 3, the thermal change necessary to be noticeable needs to be 70°C or more. This thermal range is well beyond normal office conditions. Using materials with low thermal expansion coefficients virtually eliminates this potential thermal influence even at gross manufacturing error tolerances.

[0041] The v-shape of the block 4 opens a support array S with a defined inserted direction R, where the laser drum 3 can be inserted with its longitudinal axis A parallel to the inserted direction R in two opposing faces. The block 4 does not necessarily have to be v-shaped: as an alternative to a v-shaped block 4, multiple other forms are suitable as a supporting part 4 that for the laser drum 3 which provide smooth and stable support of the laser drum 3 in a support array S with a inserted direction D and a minimized contact area between the laser housing 3 and the support body 4 for at least three different positions of the laser housing 3, e.g. a u-shaped block or two adjacent parallel bars/cylinders. Likewise, the laser containing body 3 does not have to be designed as a drum or a cylinder (see also figure 2). Multiple other forms are possible for the laser housing 3, which allow a self-centering onto the supporting part 4, like a v-block on one side and a ball/sphere on the other side (two lines, one point of contact).

[0042] Fig. 2 shows such an alternative embodiment of a calibration device 1 in a schematic cross section view, where the laser body 3 containing the laser unit 2 is designed as a straight (hollow) prism instead of a cylinder, whereby in the example the cross-section/base area of the prism is formed as a rhombus. Preferably, the rhombus is not (completely) regular but its width is smaller than its length such that the laser body 3 has a preferred up/down-orientation. The laser housing 3 is supported by a supporting body 4 designed in essence of two parallel bars and a supporting substruction (the latter not shown). The parallel bars have a distance to each other wherefore a support array is in between them, whereby the distance is slightly smaller than the width of the laser body 3 such that the center of gravity of the laser body 3 is as low as possible and the laser body 3 therefore rests stable onto the bars. As an alternative to two continuous bars, the supporting body 4 is further "reduced" to four balls/spheres or needles situated in one common plane, a pair each at or near each end of the laser body 3. The bars, balls etc and their substruction are -likewise the block described above- preferably hardened, precision ground and preferably with a low thermal expansion coefficient to guarantee a stable support for the laser housing 3.

[0043] Figure 3 shows a further embodiment of a calibration device 1, based on the embodiment shown in figures 1a-1c. At both sides of the v-groove holder 4 a stopper plate 7a, 7b is mounted. Each stopper plate 7a, 7b has machined visual alignment slots 8. The laser drum 3 also has an alignment reticle (see figure 4). Together with the alignment reticle, the machined alignment slots 8 aid orienting the laser drum 3 in the v-block 4.

[0044] Figure 4 shows one end 6a of a laser drum 3 with an alignment reticle 11. The alignment reticle 11 is glued on to the end 6a holding the laser (the side facing the user). To prevent confusion of the orientation of the laser drum 3, one line segment 11u of the reticle label 11 of the drum 3 is pointing outwards, the 180° opposing line segment 11d of the reticle is pointing inwards. Alternatively, two 180°-opposing sides of the whole laser drum 3 are marked with lines of different colours or shape (see figures 5a-5d) to indicate "up" and "down". In addition to the 180° opposing markings additional markings are optionally placed. These markings help in characterizing the laser drum 3 in case of gross manufacturing errors.

[0045] In the example, the laser drum 3 further comprises adjustment screws 10 for adjusting the laser source 2. In this preferred embodiment the laser 2 mounted in the center of the laser drum 3 is adjustable over its horizontal angle as well as its vertical angle (yaw and pitch angles) with the help of the adjustment screws 10. Alternatively, the laser diode mounting is fixed to the laser drum 3 with mounting and alignment tolerances as determined by the manufacturing process chosen. As the laser beam horizontal trueness testing device to be verified normally is collimated, it is sufficient to align the translation of optical axis of the laser source 2 only roughly with the mechanical center of the drum 3.

[0046] Figures 5a-5d show an example of calibration method according to the invention for a laser beam horizontal trueness testing device 50, comprising a position sensitive detector 51 and a telescope with an objective. The center of the position sensitive detector 51 is arranged on the optical axis of the objective of the laser beam horizontal trueness testing device 50. An evaluation unit of the laser beam horizontal trueness testing device 50 is designed for automatically determining an impinging position of the laser beam captured by the detector 51 on the basis of image processing. Calibration parameters stored in the evaluation unit represent e.g. the imaging position of the optical axis of the objective on the position sensitive detector 51 and, in particular, a direction in the image which represents an offset direction - brought about hypothetically by a pure horizontality error - of a laser beam impingement position on the detector 51.

[0047] For the translation of the determined position on the position sensitive detector 51 into a laser beam inclination value, preferably a distance is ascertained which is present in the image captured by the detector 51 between the impinging position and the imaging position in that direction which is assumed as direction or is stored in the calibration parameters and which represents an offset direction - brought about hypothetically by a pure horizontality error - of a laser beam impingement position on the positions sensitive detector 51. Said distance - in particular in accordance with a translation factor defined by the objective imaging ratio - can be translated into the laser beam inclination value.

[0048] For calibration/determining calibration parameters, four measurements/measurement steps are made. Each step is described with reference to one of the figures 5a-5d.

[0049] Figure 5a shows the set-up for the first measurement. The laser drum 3 lies onto the v-block 4 pointing into a first face F1 (to the left side in the figure, laser source 2 at the right end of the v-block 4), the v-block 4 levelled only roughly wherefore the horizontal direction of the laser beam L shows possibly a plane error. The laser beam horizontal trueness testing device 50 to be calibrated is positioned such, that the laser beam L of the calibration device 1 is imaged on the position sensitive detector (image sensor, provided for example as a CMOS or CCD chip) 51 of the laser beam horizontal trueness testing device 50. Again, there is no need to position the calibration verification device 1 and the laser beam horizontal trueness testing device 50 relative to each other in an exact way of some sort. In this arrangement, a first measurement of a first impinging position P1 of the laser beam L on the position sensitive detector 51 is made i.e. an image position of the laser beam L captured in the image is determined on the basis of image processing.

[0050] Figure 5b shows the set-up for the second measurement. The laser drum 3 is still in the first face F1, but has been rotated 180° around the y-axis, such that compared to the set up of figure 5a, the laser drum 3 is lying on its "back". The rotation is done with the help of a marking line 11d indicating "down" (see also figure 4). In this arrangement, a second measurement of a second position P2 of the laser beam L on the sensor 51 is made, which normally is different to the first impinging position P1 due to a cone error of the laser beam L.

[0051] Next, the laser drum 3 is flipped over so that the laser source 2 is in the second opposing face F2, pointing to the other side (180° rotation of the laser drum 3 around the x-axis of the v-block 4) as shown in figure 5c. In this manner, it is possible to have the laser drum 3 in one position pointing to the front of the v-block 4 (figures 5a and 5b), and in the other position pointing to the back of the v-block 4 (figures 5c and 5d). Accordingly, the laser drum 3 is now lying with its "bottom" side on the v-block 4 again, likewise in figure 5a, which is indicated by the marking line 11u indicating "up". Of course, the laser beam horizontal trueness testing device 50 is now positioned on the other side of the calibration device 1 such that the laser beam L of the calibration device 1 is imaged on its position sensitive detector 51. In this third arrangement, a third measurement of a third impinging position P3 of the laser beam L on the position sensitive sensor 51 is made.

[0052] Gravity presses the laser drum 3 on to the v-block. The laser drum 3 has less mass compared to the v-block 4 and is repositioned at the same contact position in the v-block 4 when rotated around the x-axis. This results in no change of the center point of gravity of the setup when flipping over. There is no play between the v-block 4 and laser drum 3. The accuracy of this measurement principle therefore is determined by the manufacturing accuracy of the v-block 4 and the laser drum 3.

[0053] Figure 5d shows the fourth and possibly final set-up. The laser drum 3 is still in the second face F2, but has been rotated 180° around the y-axis, such that compared to the set up of figure 5c, the laser drum 3 is lying on its "back". In this fourth arrangement, a fourth measurement of a fourth impinging position P4 of the laser beam L on the position sensitive detector 51 is made which again differs form the third position P3 due to cone error. Due to the plane error caused by the non-exact levelling the third and fourth impinging positions P3, P4 are not reverse to the first and second impinging positions P1, P2 but show an offset, dependent on the quantity of the deviation from perfect level. It is to be noted, that the position of the v-block 4 remains unchanged during the measurement procedure. It is further to be noted, that the position of the longitudinal axis A in all four positions of the laser housing 3 is equal, what is achieved by the design of the calibration device 1 according to the invention.

[0054] The rotation of the laser drum 3 around the y-axis of the v-block 4 (figures 5a to 5b and 5c to 5d) is done in order to determine the cone angles resp. eliminate the cone errors of the laser source 2 resp. its laser beam L. Cone error is misalignment of the laser beam L in radial direction from the intended laser beam orientation. Alternatively to two 180° opposing drum orientations, an ellipse on to the measurement results at multiple (at least three) non-opposing orientations of the laser drum 3 is fitted. In case an adjustable laser source 2 is chosen for the laser drum 3, the cone error of the laser source 2 in the laser drum 3 can be adjusted in both horizontal (yaw) and vertical angle (pitch). By adjusting both angles can be controlled to be substantially less than for example 30 seconds of arc.

[0055] The rotation of the laser drum 3 around the x-axis of the v-bock 4 (change from first face F1 to second face F2, figure 5b to 5c) is done in order to determine the laser plane resp. laser line of the laser beam L resp. in order to even out the non-exact levelling of the laser plane resp. laser line resp. the non-exact levelling of the whole calibration device 1 (see figure 1). As said, by rotating the laser drum 3 around the length axis of the v-block (y-axis), it is possible to align the laser source 2 mounted in the center of the laser drum 3 in such a way that the cone errors in horizontal direction (rotation around z-axis) and vertical direction (rotation around x-axis) are cancelled. In practice, perfect alignment of the laser source 2 in the laser drum 3 is not necessary, as the distortion of the optics of the laser beam horizontal trueness testing device 50 are small and the position of the position sensitive sensor 51 to the optical axis of the laser beam horizontal trueness testing device 50 is near orthogonal.

[0056] The level point, i.e. the impinging position on the positions sensitive detector 51 for an impinging laser beam of true horizontality, of the laser beam horizontal trueness testing device 50 is the center of the four image sensor positions P1-P4 measured. Therefore, the real center position of the optical axis projected to the position sensitive detector 51 of the laser beam horizontal trueness testing device 50 is obtained by averaging all four measurement results P1-P4. Thus, the calibration of the laser beam horizontal trueness testing device 50 is finalized in essence and the level point is newly set by the newly determined calibration parameters.

[0057] The averaging and calibration is preferably done by a control unit (not shown) of the laser beam horizontal trueness testing device 50, wherefore in control unit is implemented a program for a calibration verification functionality for a laser beam horizontal trueness testing device 50. Optionally, the method respectively calibration functionality comprises multiple readings to improve the standard deviation of the resulting center position resp. level point. Taking multiple readings at multiple orientations of the drum 3, each 180° opposite further improves the result. If the determined cone error is larger than 10" it can be reduced using the adjustment screws at the laser source 2.

[0058] If the laser source 2 is designed as a line laser source, it allows in addition measurement of the rotation angle over which the laser drum 3 was rotated by measurement of the angle of the projected line to the orientation of the position sensitive detector 51. By measuring the difference of the line angles between the two cone error measurements, the actual rotation angle can be determined. In case of a line laser source, the cone angle in inclination direction is measured as the orthogonal distance between the sensor center and the projected laser line.

[0059] The effect of cone errors at a certain orientation of the drum 3 around the y-axis is covered by sine and cosine laws. Measurement errors introduced by angular misalignment of the laser drum of the intended 180° opposing orientation of cone compensation and the actual orientation are therefore affected by the derivatives of the sine and cosine laws. This means that in case the cone error of the laser source 2 is reduced by prior adjustment to say 30 seconds of arc and the user makes an alignment error of 5 degrees in the orientation of the drum, the cone compensation measurement is only affected by 0.1 seconds of arc. As a result, it is not necessary to have accurate angular alignments of the laser drum 3 when determining its cone error. It is sufficient to have simple marks 11u, 11d (see also figure 4) on the circumference of the drum 3, marking both opposite positions, 180° apart and manual rotation and visual feedback. Same holds for the front-back alignment (flip over, figures 5b to 5c) of the laser drum 3 in the v-block 4.

[0060] The measurement method uses the property of the optomechanical tilt adjustment device (compensator) in laser beam horizontal trueness testing device 50. The compensator ensures that the optical line of sight of the laser beam horizontal trueness testing device 50 is always leveled (setting accuracy typically < 0.3 seconds of arc and linearity error of typically < 1 second of arc"/10minutes of tilt), providing certainty of the optical line of sight. The level of the laser beam horizontal trueness testing device 50 can be adjusted within the working range of the compensator. The accuracy of the compensator allows moving the laser beam horizontal trueness testing device 50 from front to back of the v-block 4 without significant impact on measurement resp. calibration accuracy. By moving the laser beam horizontal trueness testing device 50 from the front of the v-block 4 to the rear of the v-block 4 the laser plane resp. laser line of the v-block 4 setup can be accurately determined. In this process the laser drum 3 is to be rotated around the x-axis to point in front / rear direction.

[0061] When moving the laser beam horizontal trueness testing device 50 from front to back of the v-block 4 (figures 5b to 5c), the laser beam horizontal trueness testing device 50 needs to be positioned in the same horizontal angular alignment as where it was in the front. This is roughly achieved using the side drive of the laser beam horizontal trueness testing device 50. As an option to increase the precision of the alignment, the center of position sensitive detector 51 of the current calibration parameters is used. The deviation of the current position in the front setting from the detector center is determined. Combined with the current orientation parameter of the position sensitive detector 51, the offset of the new position when the laser beam horizontal trueness testing device 50 has been moved to the back of the v-block 4 to the correct position is calculated and corrected for.

[0062] The side drive of the laser beam horizontal trueness testing device 50 allows its azimuthal rotation. This is used in a further development of the calibration method: using the known laser plane and cone angles after the initial measurements, the rotation of the position sensitive detector 51 around the y-axis is determined by azimuthal rotation of the laser beam horizontal trueness testing device 50 over a known angle. The azimuthal angle over which the horizontal trueness testing device 50 was rotated is determined by the horizontal trueness testing device 50 itself. With known azimuthal rotation angle and known plane and cone errors, the rotation of the position sensitive detector 51 around the y-axis resp. a deviation from its ideal rotational position is determined.


Claims

1. Calibration method for calibration of a laser beam horizontal trueness testing device (50), the laser beam horizontal trueness testing device (50) comprising an inherent inclination compensator and a position sensitive detector (51) for detecting an impinging position of a laser beam (L) in dependency of the entry angle of the laser beam (L) with regard to the horizontal, wherein the method is carried out using a calibration device (1), the calibration device (1) comprising

• an elongated laser housing (3) with a longitudinal axis (A), containing a laser source (2), whereby the alignment of the laser source (2) is such that a laser beam (L) is emittable by the laser source (2) at least roughly in direction of the longitudinal axis (A), and

• an elongated support body (4) serving for support of the laser housing (3),
wherein

• the support body (4) comprises at least three points of support which define a support array (S) with a defined inserted direction (R) for insertion of the laser housing (3) with its longitudinal axis (A) parallel to the inserted direction (R) and

• the size and shape of the laser housing (3) is matched to the support array (S) in such a way that

□ the laser housing (3) is insertable into the support array (S) in a first face (F1) in at least two different rotational positions and in a second opposing face (F2) in at least one rotational position with the longitudinal axis (A) as axis of rotation each and

□ each contact area at the points of support in direction orthogonal to the longitudinal axis (A) is punctiform,

by which in each face (F1, F2) and each rotational position of the laser housing (3)

• the laser housing (3) rests position-stable and self-centered due to gravity in the support array (S) and

• the position of the longitudinal axis (A) is equal, wherein the method involves

• determining an impinging position of the laser beam (L) of the laser source (2) on the position sensitive detector (51) with the laser housing (3) in at least two different rotational positions of a first face (F1) and at least one rotational position of a second opposing face (F2) each, resulting in a first, second and at least a third impinging position (P1, P2, P3), and

• determining calibration parameters, particularly calibration parameters representing the point of true horizontality, based on the first, second and third impinging position (P1, P2, P3).


 
2. The calibration method as claimed in claim 1,
characterized in that
the method involves

• determining at least two impinging positions of the laser beam (L) with the laser housing (3) in at least two different rotational positions in the second opposing face (F2) each, resulting in the third and a fourth impinging position (P3, P4),

• determining calibration parameters from an average of the first, second, third and fourth impinging position (P1, P2, P3, P4).


 
3. The calibration method as claimed in one of claims 1 or 2,
characterized in that
the method involves

• canceling out a cone error of the laser source (2) based on two impinging positions of the laser beam (L) with the laser housing (3) in at least two different rotational positions in one face (F1/F2), whereby the rotation angle between the two different rotational positions is known, or

• canceling out a cone error of the laser source (2) based on at least three impinging positions of the laser beam (L) with the laser housing (3) in at least three different rotational positions in one face (F1/F2) and/or

• canceling out a plane error of the laser source (2) based on the impinging positions of the laser beam (L) in the first and second face (F1/F2).


 
4. The calibration method as claimed in one of claims 1 to 3,
characterized in that
the method involves further

• determining at least one additional impinging position, particularly two additional impinging positions for two rotational positions of the laser housing, of the laser beam (L) of the laser source (2) on the position sensitive detector (51) for a known rotational position in azimuthal direction of the laser beam horizontal trueness testing device (50) different to the rotational position underlying at least one other impinging position, and

• determining calibration parameters representing a yaw angle of the position sensitive detector, based on the additional impinging position,

and/or the method involves a pre-step before determining a first impinging position, the pre-step comprising orienting the laser beam (L) to the previously defined center of the position sensitive detector (51).
 
5. The method as claimed in one of claims 1 to 4 for a calibration device (1) according to claim 1 with a line laser as a laser source (2),
characterized in that
the rotation angle between two different rotational positions of the laser housing (3) is determined based on the orientation of the laser line on the position sensitive detector (51) in each rotational position.
 
6. The method as claimed in any one of the preceding claims,
characterized in that
the points of support of the calibration device (1) form lines parallel to the inserted direction (R) wherefore

• the support body (4) is designed as a block with a v-shaped support array (S) and the laser housing (3) is designed as a straight cylinder or

• the support body (4) is designed as a u-shaped support array (S) or as two bars parallel to each other and to the inserted direction (R), and the laser housing (3) is designed as a straight cylinder or a straight prism,

and/or the points of support are designed as single points spaced to each other wherefore the support body (4) comprises single spheres providing the points of support.
 
7. Method as claimed in any one of the preceding claims,
characterized in that
the alignment of the laser source (2) of the calibration device (1) is adjustable.
 
8. Method as claimed in any one of the preceding claims,
characterized in that
the laser housing (3) of the calibration device (1) comprises at least one marking (11a, 11b) on its external surface for indication of at least one rotational position, in particular whereby the laser housing (3) comprises

• two, specifically clearly distinguishable, markings (11a, 11b) indicating two rotational positions which are separated by 180°, and/or

• an alignment reticle (11)

and/or the support body (4) comprises at each end a stopper plate (7a, 7b) as limits of the support array (S) in the inserted direction (R), particularly whereby one stopper plate (7a, 7b) comprises alignment slots (8) or a single mark for defined alignment of the laser housing (3) to the support array (S).
 
9. The method as claimed in any one of the preceding claims,
characterized in that
the laser housing (3) and/or the support body (4) of the calibration device are precision ground, smooth and surface hardened.
 
10. The method as claimed in claim 9,
characterized in that
the laser housing (3) and/or the support body (4) of the calibration device

• are made of high-speed steel, glass or ceramics, and/or

• are single piece units and/or

• are made of a material with a coefficient of thermal expansion in the range of 0 to 9.10-6 K-1.


 
11. The method as claimed in any one of the preceding claims,
characterized in that
both ends of the laser housing (3) of the calibration device are enclosed by a sleeve each, whereby the sleeves are precision ground, smooth and surface hardened, in particular whereby each sleeve is designed as the race of a bearing or as a fixed ball bearing.
 
12. Computer program product having program code which is stored on a machine-readable carrier, for controlling and carrying out the method for calibration according to claim 1.
 
13. A system comprising a calibration device (1) as claimed in claim 1 and a computer program product according to claim 12.
 
14. The system as claimed in claim 13,
characterized in that
the system further comprises a laser beam horizontal trueness testing device (50) according to claim 1, whereby the laser beam horizontal trueness testing device (50) comprises a control unit, the control unit designed to execute the program code of the computer program product.
 
15. Use of a calibration device (1) according to claim 1 for calibration of a laser beam horizontal trueness testing device (50) according to claim 1.
 


Ansprüche

1. Kalibrierungsverfahren zum Kalibrieren einer Vorrichtung zum Prüfen der Horizontalitätstreue eines Laserstrahls (50), wobei die Vorrichtung zum Prüfen der Horizontalitätstreue eines Laserstrahls (50) einen Eigenneigungskompensator und einen positionssensitiven Detektor (51) zum Detektieren einer Auftreffposition eines Laserstrahls (L) in Abhängigkeit vom Eintrittswinkel des Laserstrahls (L) in Bezug auf die Horizontale umfasst, wobei das Verfahren unter Verwendung einer Kalibrierungsvorrichtung (1) ausgeführt wird, wobei die Kalibrierungsvorrichtung (1) Folgendes umfasst:

• ein langgestrecktes Lasergehäuse (3) mit einer Längsachse (A), das eine Laserquelle (2) enthält, wobei die Ausrichtung der Laserquelle (2) derart ist, dass ein Laserstrahl (L) durch die Laserquelle (2) wenigstens annähernd in Richtung der Längsachse (A) ausgesendet werden kann, und

• einen langgestreckten Stützkörper (4), der zum Stützen des Lasergehäuses (3) dient,
wobei

• der Stützkörper (4) wenigstens drei Stützpunkte umfasst, die eine Stützanordnung (S) mit einer definierten Einführrichtung (R) zum Einführen des Lasergehäuses (3) mit seiner Längsachse (A) parallel zu der Einführrichtung (R) definiert, und

• die Größe und Form des Lasergehäuses (3) derart auf die Stützanordnung (S) abgestimmt ist, dass

□ das Lasergehäuse (3) in einer ersten Stirnseite (F1) in wenigstens zwei unterschiedlichen Drehpositionen und in einer zweiten gegenüberliegenden Stirnseite (F2) in wenigstens einer Drehposition jeweils mit der Längsachse (A) als Drehachse in die Stützanordnung (S) eingeführt werden kann und

□ jeder Kontaktbereich an den Stützpunkten in einer Richtung rechtwinkelig zu der Längsachse (A) punktförmig ist,

wodurch in jeder Stirnseite (F1, F2) und jeder Drehposition des Lasergehäuses (3)

• das Lasergehäuse (3) aufgrund der Schwerkraft positionsstabil und selbstzentriert in der Stützanordnung (S) ruht und

• die Position der Längsachse (A) gleich ist,

wobei das Verfahren Folgendes beinhaltet:

• Bestimmen einer Auftreffposition des Laserstrahls (L) der Laserquelle (2) auf dem positionssensitiven Detektor (51) mit dem Lasergehäuse (3) jeweils in wenigstens zwei unterschiedlichen Drehpositionen einer ersten Stirnseite (F1) und wenigstens einer Drehposition einer zweiten gegenüberliegenden Stirnseite (F2), was in einer ersten, zweiten und wenigstens einer dritten Auftreffposition (P1, P2, P3) resultiert,
und

• Bestimmen von Kalibrierungsparametern, insbesondere Kalibrierungsparametern, die den Punkt der echten Horizontalität repräsentieren, basierend auf der ersten, zweiten und dritten Auftreffposition (P1, P2, P3) .


 
2. Kalibrierungsverfahren nach Anspruch 1,
dadurch gekennzeichnet, dass
das Verfahren Folgendes beinhaltet:

• Bestimmen von wenigstens zwei Auftreffpositionen des Laserstrahls (L) mit dem Lasergehäuse (3) jeweils in wenigstens zwei unterschiedlichen Drehpositionen in der zweiten gegenüberliegenden Stirnseite (F2), was in der dritten und einer vierten Auftreffposition (P3, P4) resultiert,

• Bestimmen von Kalibrierungsparametern aus einem Durchschnitt der ersten, zweiten, dritten und vierten Auftreffposition (P1, P2, P3, P4).


 
3. Kalibrierungsverfahren nach einem der Ansprüche 1 oder 2, dadurch gekennzeichnet, dass
das Verfahren Folgendes beinhaltet:

• Aufheben eines Kegelfehlers der Laserquelle (2) basierend auf zwei Auftreffpositionen des Laserstrahls (L) mit dem Lasergehäuse (3) in wenigstens zwei unterschiedlichen Drehpositionen in einer Stirnseite (F1/F2), wodurch der Drehwinkel zwischen den zwei unterschiedlichen Drehpositionen bekannt ist, oder

• Aufheben eines Kegelfehlers der Laserquelle (2) basierend auf wenigstens drei Auftreffpositionen des Laserstrahls (L) mit dem Lasergehäuse (3) in wenigstens drei unterschiedlichen Drehpositionen in einer Stirnseite (F1/F2) und/oder

• Aufheben eines Ebenenfehlers der Laserquelle (2) basierend auf den Auftreffpositionen des Laserstrahls (L) in der ersten und zweiten Stirnseite (F1/F2).


 
4. Kalibrierungsverfahren nach einem der Ansprüche 1 bis 3, dadurch gekennzeichnet, dass
das Verfahren ferner Folgendes beinhaltet:

• Bestimmen von wenigstens einer zusätzlichen Auftreffposition, insbesondere von zwei zusätzlichen Auftreffpositionen für zwei Drehpositionen des Lasergehäuses, des Laserstrahls (L) der Laserquelle (2) auf dem positionssensitiven Detektor (51) für eine bekannte Drehposition in azimutaler Richtung der Vorrichtung zum Prüfen der Horizontalitätstreue eines Laserstrahls (50), die sich von der Drehposition unterscheidet, die wenigstens einer anderen Auftreffposition zugrundeliegt, und

• Bestimmen von Kalibrierungsparametern, die einen Gierwinkel des positionssensitiven Detektors repräsentieren, basierend auf der zusätzlichen Auftreffposition,

und/oder das Verfahren vor dem Bestimmen einer ersten Auftreffposition einen vorgeschalteten Schritt beinhaltet, wobei der vorgeschaltete Schritt das Ausrichten des Laserstrahls (L) auf den vorab definierten Mittelpunkt des positionssensitiven Detektors (51) umfasst.
 
5. Verfahren nach einem der Ansprüche 1 bis 4 für eine Kalibrierungsvorrichtung (1) nach Anspruch 1 mit einem Linienlaser als Laserquelle (2),
dadurch gekennzeichnet, dass
der Drehwinkel zwischen zwei unterschiedlichen Drehpositionen des Lasergehäuses (3) basierend auf der Ausrichtung der Laserlinie auf dem positionssensitiven Detektor (51) in jeder Drehposition bestimmt wird.
 
6. Verfahren nach einem der vorhergehenden Ansprüche,
dadurch gekennzeichnet, dass
die Stützpunkte der Kalibrierungsvorrichtung (1) Linien parallel zur Einführrichtung (R) bilden, weshalb

• der Stützkörper (4) als Block mit einer V-förmigen Stützanordnung (S) ausgebildet ist und das Lasergehäuse (3) als gerader Zylinder ausgebildet ist oder

• der Stützkörper (4) als U-förmige Stützanordnung (S) oder als zwei zueinander und zu der Einführrichtung (R) parallele Stäbe ausgebildet ist und das Lasergehäuse (3) als gerader Zylinder oder als gerades Prisma ausgebildet ist,

und/oder die Stützpunkte als einzelne Punkte ausgebildet sind, die zueinander beabstandet sind, weshalb der Stützkörper (4) einzelne Kugeln umfasst, welche die Stützpunkte bereitstellen.
 
7. Verfahren nach einem der vorhergehenden Ansprüche,
dadurch gekennzeichnet, dass
die Ausrichtung der Laserquelle (2) der Kalibrierungsvorrichtung (1) einstellbar ist.
 
8. Verfahren nach einem der vorhergehenden Ansprüche,
dadurch gekennzeichnet, dass
das Lasergehäuse (3) der Kalibrierungsvorrichtung (1) wenigstens eine Markierung (11a, 11b) an seiner Außenfläche zur Angabe von wenigstens einer Drehposition umfasst, wobei das Lasergehäuse (3) insbesondere Folgendes umfasst:

• zwei, im Besonderen klar unterscheidbare, Markierungen (11a, 11b), die zwei Drehpositionen angeben, die um 180° voneinander getrennt sind, und/oder

• ein Ausrichtungsfadenkreuz (11)

und/oder der Stützkörper (4) an jedem Ende eine Anschlagplatte (7a, 7b) als Grenzen der Stützanordnung (S) in der Einführrichtung (R) umfasst, wobei eine Anschlagplatte (7a, 7b) insbesondere Ausrichtungsschlitze (8) oder eine einzelne Kennzeichnung für eine definierte Ausrichtung des Lasergehäuses (3) zur Stützanordnung (S) umfasst.
 
9. Verfahren nach einem der vorhergehenden Ansprüche,
dadurch gekennzeichnet, dass
das Lasergehäuse (3) und/oder der Stützkörper (4) der Kalibrierungsvorrichtung präzisionsgeschliffen, glatt und oberflächengehärtet sind.
 
10. Verfahren nach Anspruch 9,
dadurch gekennzeichnet, dass
das Lasergehäuse (3) und/oder der Stützkörper (4) der Kalibrierungsvorrichtung

• aus Hochleistungsschnellstahl, Glas oder Keramik gefertigt sind, und/oder

• einstückige Einheiten sind und/oder

• aus einem Material mit einem Wärmeausdehnungskoeffizienten im Bereich von 0 bis 9·10-6 K-1 gefertigt sind.


 
11. Verfahren nach einem der vorhergehenden Ansprüche,
dadurch gekennzeichnet, dass
beide Enden des Lasergehäuses (3) der Kalibrierungsvorrichtung jeweils von einer Buchse umschlossen sind, wobei die Buchsen präzisionsgeschliffen, glatt und oberflächengehärtet sind, wobei insbesondere jede Buchse als Laufring eines Lagers oder als festes Kugellager ausgestaltet ist.
 
12. Computerprogrammprodukt, das einen auf einem maschinenlesbaren Träger gespeicherten Programmcode zum Steuern und Durchführen des Kalibrierungsverfahrens nach Anspruch 1 aufweist.
 
13. System, umfassend eine Kalibrierungsvorrichtung (1) nach Anspruch 1 und ein Computerprogrammprodukt nach Anspruch 12.
 
14. System nach Anspruch 13,
dadurch gekennzeichnet, dass
das System ferner eine Vorrichtung zum Prüfen der Horizontalitätstreue eines Laserstrahls (50) nach Anspruch 1 umfasst, wobei die Vorrichtung zum Prüfen der Horizontalitätstreue eines Laserstrahls (50) eine Steuereinheit umfasst, wobei die Steuereinheit dafür ausgelegt ist, den Programmcode des Computerprogramprodukts auszuführen.
 
15. Verwendung einer Kalibrierungsvorrichtung (1) nach Anspruch 1 zum Kalibrieren einer Vorrichtung zum Prüfen der Horizontalitätstreue eines Laserstrahls (50) nach Anspruch 1.
 


Revendications

1. Procédé d'étalonnage pour étalonner un dispositif de test d'exactitude horizontale de faisceau laser (50), le dispositif de test d'exactitude horizontale de faisceau laser (50) comprenant un compensateur d'inclinaison inhérente et un détecteur sensible à la position (51) pour détecter une position d'incidence d'un faisceau laser (L) en fonction de l'angle d'entrée du faisceau laser (L) par rapport à l'horizontale, le procédé étant exécuté en utilisant un dispositif d'étalonnage (1), le dispositif d'étalonnage (1) comprenant

• un boîtier laser allongé (3) ayant un axe longitudinal (A) et contenant une source laser (2), l'alignement de la source laser (2) étant tel qu'un faisceau laser (L) peut être émis par la source laser (2) au moins approximativement dans la direction de l'axe longitudinal (A), et

• un corps de support allongé (4) servant à supporter le boîtier laser (3),
dans lequel

• le corps de support (4) comprend au moins trois points de support qui définissent un réseau de support (S) ayant une direction d'insertion définie (R) pour l'insertion du boîtier laser (3) avec son axe longitudinal (A) parallèle à la direction d'insertion (R) et

• la taille et la forme du boîtier laser (3) sont adaptées au réseau de support (S) de telle sorte que

o le boîtier laser (3) peut être inséré dans le réseau de support (S) dans une première face (F1) dans au moins deux positions de rotation différentes et dans une seconde face opposée (F2) dans au moins une position de rotation avec l'axe longitudinal (A) comme axe de rotation à chaque fois, et

o chaque zone de contact aux points de support dans la direction orthogonale à l'axe longitudinal (A) est punctiforme,

de sorte que, dans chaque face (F1, F2) et dans chaque position de rotation du boîtier laser (3),

• le boîtier laser (3) repose stable en position et autocentré en raison de la gravité dans le réseau de support (S) et

• la position de l'axe longitudinal (A) est la même,
le procédé comprenant les étapes consistant à

• déterminer une position d'incidence du faisceau laser (L) de la source laser (2) sur le détecteur sensible à la position (51) avec le boîtier laser (3) dans au moins deux positions de rotation différentes d'une première face (F1) et au moins une position de rotation d'une seconde face opposée (F2) à chaque fois, résultant en une première, deuxième et au moins troisième position d'incidence (P1, P2, P3), et

• déterminer des paramètres d'étalonnage, en particulier des paramètres d'étalonnage représentant le point d'horizontalité réelle, sur la base de la première, deuxième et troisième position d'incidence (P1, P2, P3).


 
2. Procédé d'étalonnage selon la revendication 1,
caractérisé en ce que
le procédé comprend les étapes consistant à

• déterminer au moins deux positions d'incidence du faisceau laser (L) avec le boîtier laser (3) dans au moins deux positions de rotation différentes dans la deuxième face opposée (F2) à chaque fois, résultant en la troisième et une quatrième position d'incidence (P3, P4),

• déterminer des paramètres d'étalonnage à partir d'une moyenne de la première, deuxième, troisième et quatrième position d'incidence (P1, P2, P3, P4).


 
3. Procédé d'étalonnage selon l'une des revendications 1 ou 2,
caractérisé en ce que le procédé comprend les étapes consistant à

• annuler une erreur conique de la source laser (2) sur la base de deux positions d'incidence du faisceau laser (L) avec le boîtier laser (3) dans au moins deux positions de rotation différentes dans une face (F1/F2), l'angle de rotation entre les deux positions de rotation différentes étant connu, ou

• annuler une erreur conique de la source laser (2) sur la base d'au moins trois positions d'incidence du faisceau laser (L) avec le boîtier laser (3) dans au moins trois positions de rotation différentes dans une face (F1/F2) et/ou

• annuler une erreur plane de la source laser (2) sur la base des positions d'incidence du faisceau laser (L) dans la première et la deuxième face (F1/F2).


 
4. Procédé d'étalonnage selon l'une des revendications 1 à 3,
caractérisé en ce que
le procédé comprend en outre les étapes consistant à

• déterminer au moins une position d'incidence supplémentaire, en particulier deux positions d'incidence supplémentaires pour deux positions de rotation du boîtier laser, du faisceau laser (L) de la source laser (2) sur le détecteur sensible à la position (51) pour une position de rotation connue dans la direction azimutale du dispositif de test d'exactitude horizontale de faisceau laser (50), différente de la position de rotation qui est à la base d'au moins une autre position d'incidence, et

• déterminer des paramètres d'étalonnage représentant un angle de lacet du détecteur sensible à la position, sur la base de la position d'incidence supplémentaire,

et/ou le procédé implique une étape préalable avant de déterminer une première position d'incidence, l'étape préalable consistant à orienter le faisceau laser (L) vers le centre préalablement défini du détecteur sensible à la position (51).
 
5. Procédé selon l'une des revendications 1 à 4 pour un dispositif d'étalonnage (1) selon la revendication 1 avec un laser linéaire comme source laser (2),
caractérisé en ce que
l'angle de rotation entre deux positions de rotation différentes du boîtier laser (3) est déterminé sur la base de l'orientation de la ligne laser sur le détecteur sensible à la position (51) dans chaque position de rotation.
 
6. Procédé selon l'une quelconque des revendications précédentes,
caractérisé en ce que
les points de support du dispositif d'étalonnage (1) forment des lignes parallèles à la direction d'insertion (R), ce pourquoi

• le corps de support (4) est conçu comme un bloc avec un réseau de support en forme de V (S) et le boîtier laser (3) est conçu sous la forme d'un cylindre droit ou

• le corps de support (4) est conçu comme un réseau de support en forme de U (S) ou sous la forme de deux barres parallèles entre elles et à la direction d'insertion (R), et le boîtier laser (3) est conçu sous la forme d'un cylindre droit ou d'un prisme droit,

et/ou les points de support sont conçus sous la forme de points individuels espacés les uns des autres, ce pourquoi le corps de support (4) comprend des sphères individuelles fournissant les points de support.
 
7. Procédé selon l'une quelconque des revendications précédentes,
caractérisé en ce que
l'alignement de la source laser (2) du dispositif d'étalonnage (1) est réglable.
 
8. Procédé selon l'une quelconque des revendications précédentes,
caractérisé en ce que
le boîtier laser (3) du dispositif d'étalonnage (1) comprend au moins un marquage (11a, 11b) sur sa surface extérieure pour indiquer au moins une position de rotation, en particulier le boîtier laser (3) comprenant

• deux marquages (11a, 11b), spécifiquement clairement distincts, indiquant deux positions de rotation séparées de 180° et/ou

• un réticule d'alignement (11)

et/ou le corps de support (4) comprend à chaque extrémité une plaque d'arrêt (7a, 7b) comme limites du réseau de support (S) dans la direction d'insertion (R), en particulier une plaque d'arrêt (7a, 7b) comprenant des fentes d'alignement (8) ou une marque individuelle pour un alignement défini du boîtier laser (3) sur le réseau de support (S).
 
9. Procédé selon l'une quelconque des revendications précédentes,
caractérisé en ce que
le boîtier laser (3) et/ou le corps de support (4) du dispositif d'étalonnage sont rectifiés avec précision, lisses et durcis en surface.
 
10. Procédé selon la revendication 9,
caractérisé en ce que le boîtier laser (3) et/ou le corps de support (4) du dispositif d'étalonnage

• sont fabriqués en acier rapide, en verre ou en céramique et/ou

• sont des unités d'une seule pièce et/ou

• sont fabriqués dans un matériau ayant un coefficient de dilatation thermique dans la plage comprise entre 0 et 9·10-6 K-1.


 
11. Procédé selon l'une quelconque des revendications précédentes,
caractérisé en ce que
les deux extrémités du boîtier laser (3) du dispositif d'étalonnage sont entourées chacune d'un manchon, les manchons étant rectifiés avec précision, lisses et durcis en surface, en particulier chaque manchon étant conçu sous la forme de la bague d'un roulement ou sous la forme d'un roulement à billes fixe.
 
12. Produit programme d'ordinateur ayant un code de programme qui est stocké sur un support lisible par machine, pour commander et exécuter le procédé d'étalonnage selon la revendication 1.
 
13. Système comprenant un dispositif d'étalonnage (1) selon la revendication 1 et un produit programme d'ordinateur selon la revendication 12.
 
14. Système selon la revendication 13,
caractérisé en ce que
le système comprend en outre un dispositif de test d'exactitude horizontale de faisceau laser (50) selon la revendication 1, le dispositif de test d'exactitude horizontale de faisceau laser (50) comprenant une unité de commande, l'unité de commande étant conçue pour exécuter le code de programme du produit programme d'ordinateur.
 
15. Utilisation d'un dispositif d'étalonnage (1) selon la revendication 1 pour étalonner un dispositif de test d'exactitude horizontale de faisceau laser (50) selon la revendication 1.
 




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Cited references

REFERENCES CITED IN THE DESCRIPTION



This list of references cited by the applicant is for the reader's convenience only. It does not form part of the European patent document. Even though great care has been taken in compiling the references, errors or omissions cannot be excluded and the EPO disclaims all liability in this regard.

Patent documents cited in the description