Posted: September 24, 2009

Nanopositioning goes 24 Bit: USB Interface and High-Resolution DA/AD Converters

(Nanowerk News) Piezo system specialist PI is switching to a new generation of 24-bit resolution, nanopositioning stage controllers. The new controllers will enable better than 100 picometers command resolution for even the latest generation, long-travel, piezo nanopositioning systems (1 mm and up), such as the PIHera™ series closed-loop flexure stages. The use of 24-bit converters represents more than 2 orders of magnitude improvement over the still widely used 16-bit converters.
USB Interface, 1 to 12 Channels, Many Variations
The new controllers feature a high speed USB interface and come in a variety of bench-top, rack-mount and OEM card versions from single-channel units for simple linear actuator applications, to multi-axis system controllers with 12 channels per rack.
Features and Advantages
  • Integrated USB Interface, 24 bit converters for higher position resolution.
  • Additional RS-232 interface for compatibility with industrial controllers
  • Extensive software libraries & GUIs; support for LabView, Matlab, text-based programming languages
  • Analog interface for compatibility with NI cards and analog control signals
  • Network capability with up to 12 channels for multiaxis positioning applications
  • Choice of position feedback sensors: capacitive for highest precision and piezoresistive / strain gauges for cost sensitive applications
  • Integrated servo controller with notch filter for higher bandwidth
  • User programmable data tables for random waveform generation
  • Extensive Software Support, Hardware-Independent Command Set
    The new piezo controllers come with Windows installation software, DLLs and LabVIEW drivers. The extensive command set is based on the hardware-independent General Command Set (GCS), common to all PI micro & nanopositioning systems. GCS reduces the programming effort in the face of complex multi-axis positioning tasks or when upgrading a system with a different PI controller.
    About PI
    PI is a leading manufacturer of piezo stages, piezo linear motors and precision motion-control equipment for photonics, bio-nanotechnology & semiconductor applications. 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 eight subsidiaries and total staff of 500+
    Source: PI (press release)
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