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Photonics Dictionary

stylus profilometer

A measuring instrument used for surface profiling and quantifying the roughness of a material. The stylus is placed on the surface of the material at a given contact force, then is moved laterally around the material and records vertical displacement as a function of position. Since this requires contact between the instrument and the material, the process takes longer than noncontact techniques. However, the process is not changed according to a material's reflective properties, unlike the noncontact variations.
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