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Positioning in a Vacuum

02-20-2012 04:57 AM CET | Industry, Real Estate & Construction

Press release from: PI miCos GmbH

The SpaceFab (Photo: PI miCos)

The SpaceFab (Photo: PI miCos)

A wide variety of applications in microscopy or optical measurement technology require a sample or an optical element to be positioned in a vacuum of up to 10-11 hPa. PI miCos has specialized in precise positioning systems for special ambient conditions and offers customized solutions for this from a wide range of technology.

One approach consists of positioners with vacuum stepper motors - from simple linear or rotation units to Hexapods and spacefabs that allow six-axis positioning in the smallest spaces with high accuracies of a few micrometers.

Piezoceramic actuators and motors are also increasingly being used in vacuums. Due to their compact design and high dynamics, they are well suited for small, fast linear or rotational stages. Piezoelectric drives maintain the position without current, thereby not generating any heat, and are vacuum-compatible up to UHV as well as suitable for magnetic field applications. Velocities of up to 400 mm/s and repeatabilities of less than 50 nm are thus feasible.

Depending on the application, additional requirements such as bakeout processes of over 100°C or positioning in X-ray environments often have to be fulfilled in addition to vacuum compatibility. PI miCos offers suitable product developments for this as well as for applications in the low temperature range.

The miCos GmbH was founded in Eschbach near Freiburg, Germany in 1990. As PI miCos, it now belongs to the company group of PI (Physik Instrumente), located in Karlsruhe, Germany. With currently more than 50 employees, PI miCos develops, produces and markets innovative systems and components for high-precision positioning applications throughout the world. A main focus is on optical measurement technology in research and industry. For this purpose, PI miCos offers customized system solutions with multiple axes in addition to a comprehensive standard program. Wide-ranging application know-how guarantees the implementation of technically demanding solutions. Flexible positioning systems for ultra-high vacuum applications with parallel-kinematics and six degrees of freedom are an example of this, as are systems with linear motor driven air cushion bearings.

Nicole Buselmeier
Sales & Support
PI miCos GmbH

Freiburger Strasse 30
79427 Eschbach
Germany

Kathrin Mössinger
Marketing & Products
Physik Instrumente (PI) GmbH & Co. KG
Auf der Roemerstrasse 1
76228 Karlsruhe
Germany

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