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How Can We Measure Distance with a Laser?

Blog How can we measure distance with laser Lasers can be used to measure distance or displacements without making physical contact with the object. They will also allow you to make the most sensitive and precise measurement of length at a much higher range than standard tape measures. Depending on the scope of the project, the techniques for using laser measuring tools will vary. And they can be used in a variety of applications (such as architecture, home and building inspections, crime scene investigations, and a number of military applications).

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Techniques for Using Laser Measuring Tools

Some of the most important techniques for using a laser tape measure or any similar product include:
  • Triangulation method— This is a geometric method that’s good for measuring a broad range of distances — from less than a millimeter to many kilometers.
  • Time-of-flight method — Also called “pulse measurement,” this method is based on measuring the time it takes for the laser to travel from the digital tape measure to the target and back again. This technique is good for measuring shorter distances and is commonly used on laser rangefinders.
  • Phase shift method — This method involves an intensity-modulated laser beam and is used on some laser rangefinders. It measures the phase shift in the modulation, which is related to time-of-flight. And while it’s not as accurate, you can use these laser measuring tools on larger distances.
  • Frequency modulation method — This method involves the use of a frequency-modulated laser beam, with the distance being measured by interpreting the frequency offset. This can be measured by the beat note of both the sent and received beams.
The accuracy of a digital tape measure will depend on how the original pulse is sent back to the device from which it was sent. While laser beams are very narrow and have a great deal of energy, they’re prone to the same types of atmospheric distortions that can affect normal, white light. These distortions can make it harder to get an accurate reading, especially if it’s near greenery or over distances that are greater than a kilometer. Some materials are known to reflect light at varying degrees, and some have a tendency to absorb light. Both of these phenomena can hinder the beam’s ability to reflect back to the laser tape measure. If the target object has either of these diffusion properties, you should do it with a digital tape measure that uses the “phase shift method.”

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Reliable Laser Measuring Tools from Engineering Supply!

If you’re looking for the most reliable selection of laser measuring tools from some of the most trusted brands in the industry, you can find everything you need at Engineering Supply. We can provide you with all the tools you need because we’re committed to offering quality products that are meant for the working professional. You want your tools to withstand years of rugged use, which is why you should look at what we have in our store. We’re sure you’ll be able to find the right tool for your specific needs.
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