Lion Precision to Demonstrate New Precision Displacement Sensor at Manufacturing 4 the Future

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The new CPL490 Capacitive Displacement Sensor is now the most precise capacitive sensor in the world. It's resolution of 7 parts-per-million at 15kHz lets users see less then 50 picometers.

CPL490 Picometer Capacitive Displacement Sensor

We can now measure changes in an object’s position of less than the diameter of one of the molecules in that object.

At the Manufacturing 4 The Future exhibition in Hartford, Conn., Lion Precision’s new CPL490 Capacitive Displacement Sensor will be on display. The noncontact device measures position/displacement with 50 picometer precision or less. Relative to the sensor’s measurement range, that translates to a resolution value of less then seven parts-per-million even at 15 kHz bandwidth. “We can now measure changes in an object’s position of less than the diameter of one of the molecules in that object,” says Don Martin, Lion Precision president. Previous models were capable of similar precision but only when high frequency components were filtered out of the measurement signal. The CPL490 can resolve target position changes of less then 100 picometers while objects are moving at 15 kHz. Bandwidth can be increased to 50 kHz, a remarkably high frequency for capacitive sensors, while maintaining a precision of less than 0.3 nanometers.

Show attendees needing incredibly precise measurements of changes in position of a moving object now have the tool they have been waiting for. The hard-disk drive industry requires spindles that turn with near zero amounts of error motion (wobble). Martin elaborates, “Disk drive spindles are now so good, it is difficult to measure the error with existing technology, but the industry demands ever higher rotary precision to continue increasing data density.” Previous technology could not see the tiny wobble when the spindles were turning at operating speeds. The CPL490 has now opened a measurement portal into the dynamic nano world enabling spindle manufacturers and designers to take the next step in precision. Many other industries including semiconductor and electron microscopy require measurement of position with similarly increasing precision. “Some new technologies are prevented from taking the next step until they are given the ability to quantify such tiny movements – now they can,” adds Martin.

The CPL490 is a new capacitive sensor module in Lion Precision’s Elite Series product line. It has a typical resolution of 7 parts-per-million and a thermal stability of 0.02% of Full Scale /°C. The Elite Series is a modular system also offering signal processing and other capacitive sensor modules.

More detail on the CPL490 is available on its web page:

Manufacturing 4 the Future is at the Connecticut Convention Center in Hartford, Conn. May 6-8, 2014. Lion Precision will be exhibiting the CPL490 and their Spindle Error Analyzer in booth 1045. More information on the event at:

In 1958, Lion Precision was the first company to provide capacitive displacement sensors to industry. The company has expanded its product offering to include eddy-current displacement sensors and some application specific sensors for the machine tool, packaging and PCB industries. The company is built on assisting users with sensor selection and implementation by providing technical knowledge resources, expert guidance and optimized systems including custom designs. Lion Precision provides high-performance noncontact sensors and experts to help use them.

For more information, contact Lion Precision:
Lion Precision
563 Shoreview Park Road
St. Paul, MN 55126 USA

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Mark Kretschmar
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