XYZ Piezo Stage

December 03,2020
XYZ Piezo-Driven Nanopositioner Enables BPL Desktop Nanoprinter

Based on a flexure-guided design, PI’s P-611 piezo nanopositioning stage combines high precision and dynamics in a compact package. Also known as the NanoCube®, this closed-loop stage delivers 120µm travel range in 3 degrees of freedom – ideal applications such as photonics alignment and Beam Pen Lithography (BPL). One of the advantages of BPL is its flexibility to create arbitrary, programmable patterns, independent of fixed photomasks with no need to create a new master for each variation. This maskless technique saves both time and cost, making it ideal for prototyping.

PI’s closed-loop piezo system handles the motion part in the TERA-print TERA-Fab™ E series platform. The piezo XYZ stage precisely moves the substrate under the beam pen array between light exposures and enables rapid reconstruction of an arbitrary, high-resolution pattern - up to 100,000s of sub-250nm pixels at a time. The nanopositioning mechanism is actuated by special multilayer piezo stacks whose ceramic encapsulation provides protection against humidity and moisture, important in bio-chemical applications.

Long-Life Piezo Actuators, Good Enough for NASA

The XYZ piezo stage is driven by ceramic-encapsulated preloaded and flexure motion-amplified PICMA® piezo actuators that provide better performance and reliability than conventionally insulated piezo actuators. Actuators, guidance, and sensors are maintenance-free, not subject to wear, humidity and moisture tolerant, and offer extraordinary lifetime and cost-effectiveness. In reliability tests carried out by NASA/JPL for the Mars Mission, the actuators survived 100 billion cycles without failures.

Related Glossary Terms

  • degrees of freedom

    degrees of freedom

    Number of axes along which a robot, and thus the object it is holding, can be manipulated. Most robots are capable of maneuvering along the three basic Cartesian axes (X, Y, Z). More sophisticated models may move in six or more axes. See axis.