LED illumination systems, laser diode modules improve dental imaging
Salem-based ProPhotonix Limited delivers advanced technology to dental equipment market
Advances in 3D scanning and x-ray imaging have significantly accelerated the process of capturing a 3D digital model of a patient’s mouth, much of this due to LED illumination systems and laser diode modules produced by ProPhotonix Limited, a manufacturer with corporate headquarters in Salem, NH, but operations in Ireland and the U.K.
ProPhotonix has sold 190,000 LED illumination systems and laser diode modules to the dental equipment market to date. The company provides custom LED lights and laser diode modules for a number of different dental equipment applications, including LED-based 3D imaging light sources and patient positioning lasers, as well as laser diode modules and LED lamps for x-ray imaging applications.
Laser modules are used in two ways to capture a 360 degree view of a patient’s mouth: providing a guide for accurate patient positioning and enabling digitization of x-rays. Visible, eye-safe lasers, typically red or green lines or crosses, are projected onto the patient to ensure accurate targeting. Laser diode modules are also used more actively in the dental imaging process where a laser module scans the image plate enabling digitization. The laser spot size and output power directly influence the resolution and contrast in the final image.
ProPhotonix’s Chip-on-Board LED technology, which incorporates more than 190 LEDs into a miniature ring light in an area of less than 55 mm2, is used for x-ray imaging as well, producing an intense and uniform light-source to ensure successful image capture, says the company. LED lights are also used in x-ray imaging equipment to erase the digital image from the x-ray plate, using a specific wavelength with high intensity and uniform illumination.
“The company’s ability to service multiple applications in this market demonstrates the advantage that we offer [original equipment manufacturers] as an expert in both laser diode and LED technology,” said ProPhotonix’s President and CEO Tim Losik. “Dental equipment manufacturers require stringent quality requirements and demand innovative solutions to meet their needs. Our ability to successfully supply this market over many years, illustrates the innovation, quality and reliability that are core to our product offerings.”