NPL acquire Polytec MSA-400 micro systems analyser

To support the metrology and dynamic characterisation of MEMS and other micro-structure devices as part of the CEMMNT project, NPL has added a Polytec MSA-400 micro systems analyser to its armoury of tools working in the micro and nano domain.

NPL’s new Polytec MSA-400 covers frequencies to 1 MHz and measures dynamic motion in both the out-of-plane (Z axis) and inplane (X-Y axes) directions. It is capable of measuring the frequency response of resonant devices (such as cantilevers, membranes, accelerometers, etc), as well as the time domain response of switches, actuators and other structures, displaying that response as still or animated deflection shapes for o-o-p vibration, or Bode plots with motion amplitude for lateral measurements.


Data is easily taken, given fast indication of the overall frequency response of a structure, with deflection shapes quantifying the motion at the resonant and other frequencies. Such information is essential to check if design, manufacture and operation are correct for the device.

The MSA-400 will also ensure that existing characterisation work on PZT and other active materials will be enhanced and extended.

The purchase of such a system shows NPL’s commitment to supporting the emerging field of Microsystems and Nanotechnology and it is hoped that further work will ensure the development of calibration and certification techniques for the measurement of these challenging devices.


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