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Optical measurement systems

VTT creates, designs and constructs advanced measurement devices that meet the specifications of even the most challenging applications. VTT has developed dozens of commercialised instruments now in use in the most demanding process environments.

Our optical analysers and methods are based on UV, VIS, NIR, MIR, Raman and fluorescence spectroscopy. They are used in applications such as the measurement of moisture, chemical composition analysis, thickness of material and uniformity analysis. 

We create new business opportunities for sensor companies, but also offer next generation turnkey solutions to end users such as paper, printing, steel and pharmaceutical companies.

End-product quality, material surface, topography, defect detection, 3D dimension measurement and colour inspection are examples of high-speed industry applications that benefit from our camera technology and machine vision-related measurement systems.

Instrument development cycle

VTT is one of the world’s leading R&D centres in the development of online optical analysers, with over 60 experts specialising in optical engineering and measurement technologies, process analysis and modelling, optoelectronics, machine vision, image analysis, and high precision optomechanics.

We have significant expertise throughout the development cycle of optical instruments, starting from measurement principles and quick prototyping for online feasibility studies, to final product development. Our mission is to provide superior research and development services for both process measurement and control system suppliers and for end users. Our design and manufacturing competences include optics, mechanics, electronics and software skills. We also regularly get involved in the implementation and industrial testing of our systems.

The development of optical measurement systems is based on VTT’s ability to combine the latest developments in optical analyser device/component technologies and our efficient optical analyser design methods.

Process analysers

VTT is one of the main researchers and developers of new process analysers for harsh and demanding process environments. We tailor process analyser solutions to client specifications. These systems are designed for environments where measurement speed, contamination, temperature and vibration may prohibit the use of off-the-shelf solutions. Our main market for process analysers is high volume production industries such as paper and steel, as well as those where raw material cost, wastage and end product quality play a critical role, as they do in the pharmaceutical industry.

Machine vision systems

VTT develops machine vision systems and solutions for various industrial applications.

The machine vision systems that VTT produces are used for particle size measurement, surface inspection, real-time topography and road condition monitoring, among others. VTT systems are used in the laboratory, in harsh industrial environments and even for outdoor measurement applications.

Special areas of expertise include:

  • vision system design
  • high-speed camera technologies
  • illumination system design
  • rapid algorithm prototyping
  • industrial vision system programming
  • user interface design.

Hand-held and mobile sensing devices

VTT has developed some interesting technology platforms for intelligent mobile and hand-held measurement gauges. We combine multi-disciplinary design and manufacturing competences with the newest component technologies to create innovative hand-held and mobile sensing solutions. We bring optical measurement technologies to mobile phones and other devices, whether portable, wireless or battery-operated.

Since 2005, VTT has developed mobile measurement platforms for integration into mobile phones. This has led not only to the discovery of interesting measurement applications, but also to novel technology solutions. Some of these have been applied to camera-based measurement methods, miniaturized optical module technologies, and embedded software and calculation algorithms. Other applications of our mobile technologies include microscopes and 3D and colour measurement.

We also apply our expertise in biodiagnostics and optical sensing to the field of biomedical devices. As examples, VTT has created technology platforms for a TR-FRET reader, a point-of-care lateral flow test reader (POCTER) and customised optical readers. Other possible applications include optical devices for eye diagnostics, exhalation gas measurement, point-of-care readers or small spectrometers for imaging neurosurgery applications.

Process measurements

Pulp & paper industry

  • moisture scanning and moisture profile
  • coating thickness
  • colour and brightness
  • formation and surface topography
  • gloss
  • coating paste composition
  • consistency and freeness of pulp
  • printing quality.
  • Pharmaceutical industry
  • raw material identification
  • moisture
  • particle size
  • concentration
  • uniformity and API distribution
  • end-point analysis of granulation
  • end-product quality inspection.

Metal and steel industry

  • surface inspection
  • surface roughness
  • gloss measurements
  • rollmark detection
  • oil film thickness
  • oxide layer thickness measurement
  • thermal imaging
  • final product dimension measurement.

Hand-held and mobile devices

  • contact angle device
  • mobile microscope
  • mobile 3D device
  • mobile colour meter
  • bio readers
  • FPI-based spectrometer in neurosurgery.