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Posted: Aug 19, 2015

Miniature Lift Stages with Piezo Flexure Drives: Frictionless Z Motion from PI

(Nanowerk News) PI (Physik Instrumente) L.P., a leading manufacturer of nanopositioning and precision motion-control equipment for nano-biotechnology, metrology, and photonics applications, introduces the PIHera Z flexure-guided piezo nanopositioning stage, offering record travel ranges of 50 µm to 250 µm (400 µm open-loop).
Vibrationless Motion, Fast Response, High Resolution
Flexure guided piezo positioning stages provide vibrationless motion with virtually unlimited resolution and fast response. Due to the lack of rolling elements, there is no bearing rumble to affect the uniformity or straightness of motion. PIHera precision closed-loop Z-stages are equipped with absolute-measuring direct-metrology capacitance sensors and provide resolution down to 0.1nm, in a compact, FEA optimized package for high stiffness and long lifetime. Direct metrology provides higher stability and linearity compared to inferred metrology feedback – usually based on piezo resistive strain gauges, a technique also available from PI for entry level piezo nanopositioners. Cost effective, positioning accuracy of 0.02%, and optional vacuum compatibility make these compact stages ideal for applications that require frictionless, vibration-free, positioning with high linearity.
Miniature Piezo Flexure Positioning Stage
Miniature Piezo Flexure Positioning Stage.
Video Animation
Proven Success Out of This World
Driven by PI’s proprietary PICMA® piezo ceramics (tested by NASA/JPL for 100 billion cycles and employed on the Mars Rover), PIHera piezo stages have unique properties especially important in long-term research and industrial applications, including temperature tolerance range of -20 to 80 C.
Best in Class Design, Millisecond Step & Settle, Sub-Nanometer Precision
These ultra-precise piezo mechanic nanopositioning devices are a result of PI’s 40 years of experience with piezo flexure positioners, developed by the world’s most experienced nanopositioning design teams. PI flexure piezo stages can repeatedly provide nanometer and sub-nanometer size steps, and their high stiffness and advanced control algorithms allow them to move and settle quickly, within a few milliseconds. PI also offers high-speed models that settle in under one millisecond. Flexure stages provide friction-free motion with excellent straightness and flatness data. Similar performance can only be achieved with air bearings and magnetic levitation guiding systems -- both technologies also offered by PI.
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Application Examples
Micro-manufacturing, photonics and optics alignment, super-resolution microscopy, semiconductor test equipment, scanning probe microscopy, biotechnology, surface metrology, quality assurance, nanometrology, interferometry, nanopositioning.
About PI
PI is a leading manufacturer of precision motion control equipment, piezo motors, air bearing stages and hexapod parallel-kinematics for semiconductor applications, photonics, bio-nano-technology and medical engineering. PI has been developing and manufacturing standard & custom precision products with piezoceramic and electromagnetic drives for 4 decades. The company has been ISO 9001 certified since 1994 and provides innovative, high-quality solutions for OEM and research. PI is present worldwide with eleven subsidiaries, R&D / engineering on 3 continents and total staff of 800+.
Source: PI (press release)
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