Motion Without Backlash

Fig. 1: Open frame table, 10 mm stroke

Although the positioning stages in the Nanorobotics section are more robust, stronger and easier to handle than this model, you might be confronted with tasks, where you need a small stage which is more frame-like. This module is ideal if you need a positioning solution for transmission light microscopy and do not have enough space to use a Nanorobotics frame.

This linear table with dimensions of 45 mm x 45 mm x 5.5 mm is driven by two parallel Nanomotors. The table has a stroke of 5 mm (optional 10 mm with Big Nanomotors) and has no backlash due to the backlash-free operation of the Nanomotors and due to the lack of additional hinges or guiding. Two carrier plates can transport objects while the open construction with a free hole of 20 mm x 20 mm allows transmission experiments. Two of these tables can be combined to form an xy-positioner. The XY-Table is suitable for scanning microscopy e.g. for a SNOM. Up to four linear tables can be controlled by one NWC Network Controller.

Dimensions of the frame:
45 mm x 45 mm x 5.5 mm for 5 mm stroke
67 mm x 67 mm x 9 mm for 10 mm stroke

An example application:
If the XY-Table with 10x10 mm stroke is placed around the objective of a high resolution light microscope ("Axiovert": 30 mm diameter), there is still 5x5 mm2 stroke left - with Nanometer resolution:
A sample with a micrograting was moved by the XY-Table placed around the objective of an "Axiovert" Microscope. Since the objective comes from the bottom the space above the sample is free, e.g. for Manipulation. In this case a contrast amplifier was placed above the sample, coupled with a CCD-camera and a monitor to get the best magnification.
Within the fine positioning stroke the micrograting could be moved without any vibration. The resolution of the table exceeds the microscopes resolution by two orders of magnitude.
The stepsize of the coarse steps could be varied between 20 nm/step and 200 nm/step.
With coarse steps of 20 nm amplitude the grating could be moved so smoothly that the microscope could not resolve any irregularity. For microbiology this is an important feature: for example "to milk a cell", i.e. to fix it, let it start an enzyme production, take the end of the enzyme and pull it very slowly and smoothly out of the cell, indefinitely, since the cell goes on with producing the enzyme.
A conventional xy-positioner of a high-resolution microscope would vibrate too much for this experiment: The cell would burst.
The combination with high resolution light or confocal laser microscopes results in a work station for microbiology, cell research and genetics with entirely new properties.

  • better 1nm resolution
  • 5 or 10 mm stroke
  • max. load up to 50 g
  • open frame structure
  • very small
  • Ultra High Vacuum compatible
  • low-voltage  power supply
  • 45mm x 45mm, 5 mm stroke
  • 67mm x 67mm, 10 mm stroke
Example applications:
Other sources of information:

Library of all publications

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