Performance of a Large Motorized Rotary Air Bearing Stage for Synchrotron Crystallography

PI recently built a large 300mm diameter rotary air bearing stage for use in a synchrotron beamline test facility. The beamline, when finished, will be used for Macromolecular Crystallography. This stage was designed with the goal of achieving best-possible performance for the following specifications: Stiffness Load capacity Radial runout error motion Velocity smoothness The application […]

Novel Sample Stage Alignment Hexapod for X-ray Microscopy and Tomography

Hexapod with Additional Linear Encoders to Achieve the Highest Precision 1. Application: X‑Ray Microscopy / Tomography For synchrotron-based sub-micrometer hard X‑ray Tomography, the sample rotation axis must be aligned very precisely in at least five degrees of freedom with respect to the field of view, the lens, the detector or the beam itself. High stiffness […]

Advances in Precision Positioning Stage Design-Optimized Outgassing and Motion Performance in Ultra-High Vacuum Applications

Many processes in advanced research and industrial manufacturing can only be performed in a vacuum, such as thin-film sputtering and ion milling, and technologies formerly reserved for exotic materials processing are seeing application in new fields. And of course the march of Moore’s Law means new types of equipment have been developed that impose vacuum […]

Performance of Direct-Drive Linear Motor Stages in Precision Positioning Applications

Brushless direct drive linear motors provide advantages over leadscrew and ballscrew driven positioning stages when it comes parameters such as acceleration, maximum speed, accuracy, constancy of velocity, and avoidance of vibration. This article explains types of motors, encoders and provides test data of PI’s new V-551 linear motor stage.   Iron Core and Ironless Motors […]

Electron Microscopy: Nonmagnetic Drives and Stages for Vacuum

Electron microscopy allows investigations with extremely high lateral resolution down to a range of less than one nanometer. However, this places great demands on the imaging elements. And, of course, the specimens need to be positioned with the same precision to give meaningful measured results. Drives and positioning systems therefore perform important tasks in electron […]

Why To Use Air Bearing Stages Over Mechanical Bearings

Most motion applications are perfectly well-served by mechanical bearing guidance; but there are many cases where precision, angular repeatability, and geometric performance must be optimal or where vibration and sub-micron bearing rumble is problematic. An air-bearing stage can help in these situations. An air-bearing stage is a rotary or linear positioner that floats on a […]

Stacks of Single Axis Stages vs. Hexapods

When faced with a multi-axis motion application, many users stack motion stages, and in fact that is a fine approach for assemblies of just a few axes. But as applications become more complex, so do the equivalent stacks-of-stages, and very real and practical considerations begin to come into play. Stiffness.  Some stage manufacturers publish stiffness […]

Why Google Engineers can make better Cameras using PI’s Direct-Drive Hexapod Multi-Axis Motion Platform

Google’s Pixel 2 has one of the most advanced cameras found in smartphones today. In a recent YouTube video by “Nat & Friends” on how Google built the Pixel 2 Camera, PI’s H-860 “shaker” hexapod is shown in a motion simulation application. Modern cameras use electronic image stabilization algorithms to reduce side effects from motion […]

Hexapod 6-Axis Micro-Robots – Enablers for Today’s Advanced Camera Manufacturing… and Tomorrow’s

Hexapod micro-motion robots are a novel motion technology that provides all six degrees of freedom in an unusually stiff, compact, and high-precision structure, composed of a single moving platform supported in parallel by six motorized struts arranged with optimized constraint (“parallel kinematics”). From a motion control standpoint, hexapods are the equivalent of an XYZ stack with […]

High Performance Motion Control – Systems Approach Provides Nanometer Precision for Industrial Applications

High performance motion control plays a key part in positioning and handling applications, such as those in semiconductor manufacturing, laser and materials processing, optical inspection systems, additive manufacturing or industrial digital printing. In addition to providing reliability and robustness, deterministic behavior with minimized latency, high-speed synchronization with external devices, such as lasers and cameras, is […]

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About PI

PI (Physik Instrumente) 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 fifteen subsidiaries, R&D / engineering on 3 continents and total staff of more than 1,000.

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