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PI (Physik Instrumente), a manufacturer of precision parallel kinematics motion control systems, has released the M-811.STV, a miniature hexapod for vacuum applications.

A non-vacuum version is also available.

The M-811.STV miniature vacuum-compatible hexapod measures 130mm in diameter and 115mm in height, yet provides precision motion in all six degrees of freedom.

Its small size allows it to be easily integrated into vacuum chambers.

The easy-to-use design allows a user to randomly set the centre of rotation by a simple software command.

Despite its size, it has a high load capacity of 11lb (5kg).

Its actuator resolution is 0.04um and repeatability +/-0.5um.

It has six degrees of freedom, a randomised centre of rotation and velocity to 10mm/sec.

XYZ-Travel is 35/35/13mm and rotations are XYZ 20deg/20deg/40deg, respectively.

Like all PI parallel kinematic Hexapod positioners, the miniature vacuum Hexapod comes bundled with software and a digital controller with high-speed Ethernet connectivity.

Programming and commanding the Hexapod is straight-forward, as all positions are given in Cartesian coordinates (XYZ, Theta X, Theta Y, Theta Z).

Parallel-kinematics positioning systems have several advantages over conventional stacked multi-axis positioners.

All six actuators directly affect one common platform, significantly reducing mass and inertia.

Moreover, there is no accumulation of the lateral and angular run-out errors of the individual axes.

Unlike rotation stages and goniometers, which come with a fixed centre of rotation, the PI Hexapod lets the user set and change the pivot any time via software.

Hexapod applications are found in technology fields including high-energy physics, medical engineering, X-ray microscopy, photonics alignment, semiconductor test and metrology, astronomy, precision machining and aeronautics.

Physik Instrumente

PI is a global manufacturer of high precision positioning systems and products based on piezo technology. Used in markets as diverse as biotechnology, semiconductor, defence and astronomy, PI’s products work to improve the speed and precision of many cutting edge processes. Actuators, sensors and positioning systems with either sub-micron or nanometre level precision; many customised for the end user, are included in the product range.

With manufacturing and subsidiary offices around the world and a workforce of more than 500 PI provides direct local support where it is needed. Products range from component level piezo ceramic assemblies to six axis hexapod positioning robots. PI manufactures its own piezo ceramic material including multilayer devices that incorporate its patented ceramic insulation technology. Lead free ceramic technology is now also included in the company’s product range. With the flexibility and continuity of supply offered by having control of piezo ceramic production comes security and speed of delivery for customers who rely on or are looking to move into this area of technology. PI’s piezo ultrasonic and step drive motor technologies offer unique performance including self-locking capability, high force or high speed and non-magnetic and vacuum compatibility.

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