PI is the world’s leading provider of nanopositioning products and systems. All key technologies are developed, manufactured and qualified in-house by PI: Piezo components, actuators and motors, magnetic drives, guiding systems, nanometrology sensors, electronic amplifiers, digital controllers and software.
PI positioning systems are employed where technology is pushed forward in industry and research. This is done, for example, in semiconductor manufacturing, in medical engineering, in biotechnology, in plant engineering, in surface metrology, or in astronomy.
PI combines its long-term experience in micro and nanopositioning technology with in-depth knowledge in the fields of mechanics, electronics, sensor engineering and software. Thus, PI is able to offer its customers the most advanced drive technologies and system solutions.
Making Better Microscopes with PI Nanopositioning Equipment – Witecmei 11, 2019
Find out how WITec – a manufacturer of high-resolution near-field atomic force microscopes and confocal Raman systems – can provide superior instruments with nano-positioning technology from PI ─ since the company started 21 years ago!
Motion Controller Adapts to Different Loads in Real Time: ServoBoost™mei 4, 2019
ServoBoost™ is a real-time automatic adaption to load changes for ACS motion controllers: The video shows how an ACS motion controller with ServoBoost™ automatically maintains the performance and stability of a high-precision motion stage despite a significant load changes.
Digital Piezo Controller with EtherCAT®april 18, 2019
There are more and more applications in the industrial environment for high-precision, piezo-based positioning systems; semiconductor manufacturing is a typical example of this. As a solution supplier for drive technology and positioning systems, PI (Physik Instrumente) therefore offers the E-727 piezo controller in a new variant. Read more
XY Voice Coil Stage – Compact, Fast, Precise Motion Control – V-528april 4, 2019
Voice Coil linear motors provide friction-less, maintenance-free motion in a compact package. The V-528 linear stage shown in the video can be arranged in an XY configuration. It provides 20mm travel range (5mm and 10mm versions are also available). An integrated optical linear encoder (10nm resolution) is used for position feedback to a compact 2 channel controller. More info
Sub-Nanometer Resolution Piezo Linear Motor – V8 Piezo Motor with Zygo Interferometermaart 30, 2019
Closing the loop on a V8 piezo linear motor with a laser interferometer: resolution down to 0.15 nanometers is achievable. More information on the PiezoWalk linear motor.
Gantry & Hexapod for Industrial Photonics Alignment & Packaging Automation, Fiber Array Alignmentfebruari 28, 2019
Combining parallel kinematic 6-Axis motion systems, gantries and fast alignment algorithms allows higher throughput in fiber array alignment. Efficient algorithms provide simultaneous alignment of array-device input and output, for test and attachment. Hexapod 6-Axis robotic positioners provide 6-DOF motion. More information
Brochure: Nanopositioning for Microscopyfebruari 2, 2019
In microscopy, the exact positioning of samples and objectives is a prerequisite for reliably obtaining interpretable image data. In the new brochure “Nanopositioning for Microscopy”, PI (Physik Instrumente) provides an overview of relevant positioning solutions based on numerous application examples. The brochure “Nanopositioning for Microscopy” provides a comprehensive overview of PI’s positioning solutions for microscopy. Read more
Testing and Manufacturing of High Load Hexapodsjanuari 29, 2019
V-508 Compact Linear Motor Stage – Nanometer Resolution Positioningjanuari 26, 2019
Video shows a V-508 compact linear stage driven by a electromagnetic linear motor. Linear motors provide smooth motion, rapid acceleration and very long life time (no friction, no maintenance).
An integrated linear encoder provides nanometer position resolution. More on the performance of linear motor stages. More info
Fully Integrated Fast Alignment Routines in a Cost-Effective Solutionjanuari 18, 2019
The new F-131 Modular XYZ Photonic Alignment System from Physik Instrumente (PI) is an excellent foundation for developing, studying and pursuing manufacturing and testing of photonic components. It integrates a reconfigurable stack of three precision, closed-loop DC motor stages with 15mm travel range plus a closed-loop XYZ Nanocube piezo flexure stage capable of high speed and 2nm resolutions. Read more
Multi-Axis Motion System for Touch Screen Performance Testjanuari 12, 2019
Single and Two-Axis Ultrasonic Piezo Positioning Systemsnovember 20, 2018
Positioning systems with ultrasonic piezo motors are very suitable for applications that require fast and precise positioning and only allow limited installation space, for example, micromanipulation or for positioning samples and lenses in microscopy as well as processes in medical technology and biomedical engineering. Read more
6D Non-Contact Surface Metrology for Aspheric Optics with 6-Axis Hexapod Motion Systemnovember 9, 2018
6-Axis Hexapod precision positioning systems from PI can help speed up measurements of aspheric surfaces. Testing aspherical shape accuracy can be a major challenge for the manufacturer when deviations in the nanometer range need to be measured and high throughput is required. The system shown here, based on a new interferometer designed by metrology specialist Mahr utilizes a 6-axis hexapod motion and positioning system from PI. More information: https://www.pi-usa.us/en/tech-blog/fast-non-contact-asphere-surface-metrology-aided-by-hexapod-6-axis-motion-system
Faster Nanopositioning Advances Microscopy & Analytical Instruments: AFM SNOM RAMAN by www.pi.wsnovember 3, 2018
Positioning Heavy Loads with Nanometer Precision over Long Travel Rangesoktober 20, 2018
Hybrid drives combine two different drive concepts into a high-performance and precision positioning system. They take advantage of both drives. These types of solutions are always in demand when one drive alone is not in a position to meet all of the requirements of applications. Read more
New Catalog on Parallel-Kinematic Systems: Precision Positioning with Hexapodsseptember 13, 2018
Positioning systems which operate with micro or even nanometer resolution are required in many areas of automation technology. For multi-axis solutions, parallel-kinematic systems often are the perfect choice since they position with high accuracy and cover a wide range of loads, travel ranges, and speeds. A new, well-structured, catalog gives an overview of all options. Read more
F-131 Powerful Fiber Alignment Systemaugustus 18, 2018
Ideal for Applications in Photonics
The basis of the fiber alignment system is an XYZ setup consisting of three motorized linear stages from the M-111 series for rough alignment and a P-611 NanoCube® nanopositioner. The motorized drives make longer travel ranges possible and at the same time, the NanoCube® nanopositioner ensures fast scanning motion and precision positioning. Read more
SO builds the largest telescope in the world with drive technology from PIjuli 21, 2018
The starlit sky has been fascinating humanity since the dawn of time. Observing distant galaxies, discovering new planetary systems and the idea of life outside our solar system does not only inspire our fantasy but also provides us with important insights for a better understanding of the universe.
Find out how high-precision drive technology from PI sharpens the view into space! Read more
Miniature Piezo Transducers -Tubes, Spheres, Manufacturing of Custom Piezo Transducersjuli 18, 2018
Electroceramic transducers are vital in sensing and motion applications. Piezo Tubes are used in microscopy, and photonics applications such as fiber alignment. Shperical Transducers can be used in ultrasonic applications as receivers and transmitters. Applications range from medical to industrial production. Miniaturized piezo transducers are also used for nanodispensing and micro-fluidics.
Fast, Accurate, and Very Robust: Precision Linear Stages for Industrial Mechanical Engineeringjuli 11, 2018
Precision automation in mechanical engineering requires positioning systems which do not only work accurately and dynamically but which are also robust and reliable. Typical examples of applications are laser processing, 3-D printing, optical inspection, or scanning. PI (Physik Instrumente) now offers the particularly robust V-412 and V-417 linear stages for such fields of application. read more
Hybrid Concept with Parent Position Measurement and Closed-Loop Controljuli 3, 2018
- Simultaneous control of piezo flexure drives and DC-servo/ball screw drives
- Repeatability in the nanometer range
- Direct metrology: Linear encoder with 2 nm resolution
The New Catalog Makes the Selection Easy: Precision and Dynamics with Piezo Motorsjuni 26, 2018
High-precision, piezo-based positioning systems for millimeter travel ranges are required in many fields, as for example in microscopy, in the automation of manual tools, or in mobile devices, in systems for micromanipulation, in optomechanics, and for scientific instruments as well as increasingly for industrial applications. PI (Physik Instrumente), a solution supplier of high-precision positioning systems, has incorporated many positioning solutions originally developed for specific applications into its standard range of products. Read more
High Resolution and Easy Integration: Robust and Reliable Linear Stages for the Industryjuni 19, 2018
Laser processing, electronics production, optical inspection, and many more automation solutions require dynamic, precise and at the same time reliable positioning systems that can be easily integrated into machines. PI (Physik Instrumente) has therefore extended its product portfolio for industrial positioning solutions with the L-412 and L-417 linear stages.
Programmable Pivot Point Demo, Hexapod 6-Axis Motion Platformjuni 13, 2018
PI’s Hexapod 6 Axis Parallel Motion platforms have a very useful feature for alignment applications – a user programmable pivot point. Here’s how it works.
Industrial Automation Platforms for Precision Laser Machining & Material Processingjuni 9, 2018
In this video: Precision laser machining, such as cutting, marking, micro-machining, or micro-drilling – requires highly accurate motion equipment, such as motorized linear and rotary stages, galvo scanners, and advanced motion controllers with high speed Ethercat synchronization and software that tie it all together. PI offers precision positioning components and engineered automation platforms for high-precision and high-throughput laser processing that address the needs of OEMs, integrators and end users. More info
Helical 3D Tomography with Air Bearing Precesion Rotary and Linear Positioning Stagesmei 14, 2018
New Catalog Packed with 300 Pages of Information: Industry-Compliant, Motorized, Precision Positioning Systemsmei 1, 2018
Parallelism in Photonics Alignment Automation: Key to Economic Test & Packagingapril 24, 2018
Compared to the devices typical of the telecom revolution of two decades ago, today’s typical Silicon Photonics (SiP) devices present more channels, smaller form factors, and exponentially higher production quantities. Transverse alignment tolerances well below 50nm are common, and multi-channel inputs and outputs necessitate at least an additional theta-Z alignment in order to optimize and balance the couplings across the input or output array. Very often the theta-X and theta-Y orientations must be optimized as well, and Z gaps must be set by vision or by contact sensing, or by a waist-seeking approach in lensed applications.
Nanometer Precise Spacers for Optics and Precision Engineeringapril 16, 2018
New Advanced Input Shaping and Gantry Control – Precision Motion Solutionsapril 14, 2018
Precision Motion Sub-Systems for Electronics and Photonics Manufacturing / Laser Processingmaart 2, 2018
Optimized PICMA® Chip Actuators for Ultrasound Applications in Medical Technologyfebruari 18, 2018
PI Ceramic manufactures new ring chips in multilayer technology that allow resonant operation. This means that it is possible to generate oscillation with frequencies of up to 100 kHz with an operating voltage of a few volts – a combination that has not been offered before in series production.
Six-Axis Positioning System with Brushless DC Motors and Absolut Encoders: Flat Hexapod for Industrial Automationfebruari 9, 2018
Parallel-kinematic hexapods position in six degrees of freedom and they work with considerably more precision than is possible with serial, stacked systems. In automation systems, the space for integrating the hexapod is usually very limited and multi-shift operations require durable solutions. At the same time, the limited space often increases the risk of collisions; for example, when referencing is necessary after an emergency stop or a power failure and therefore needs to be moved back without being controlled. With the compact H-825 hexapod, PI (Physik Instrumente) now has the suitable positioning solution in its portfolio for these types of applications.
PI (Physik Instrumente) is Committing Itself to New Service Concepts: Individual Service for High-End Positioning Systemsfebruari 3, 2018
PI Presents a New Catalog for Positioning Solutions Using Piezo Systemsdecember 21, 2017
Precision Linear Stage for Automation Tasksdecember 6, 2017
Positioning systems that meet the high demands on precision and dynamics are required for a large number of applications in automation technology; at the same time, purchase costs often play a decisive role. PI (Physik Instrumente) has added the V-408 PIMag® linear stage to its portfolio, the best solution for simple and price-sensitive automation tasks.
High Throughput with High Travel Accuracy and Stability: Precision XY Stages for Industrial Applicationsoktober 11, 2017
In order to achieve high throughput today, industrial measuring technology and microscopy, optical inspection tasks, and laser processing need positioning systems that are as fast as possible and offer high travel accuracy and stability.
For these application fields, PI (Physik Instrumente) now offers a new series of different motorized XY stages (V-731 and L-731) that work with velocities up to 200 mm/s. The bidirectional repeatability is 0.1 µm and minimum incremental motion is 0.02 µm. The XY stages, which have a size of only 310 × 310 × 80 mm, are offered with travel ranges of 205 × 205 mm (8 inches) and it is also possible to offer customized versions. They are controlled by PI controllers or – in multi-axis gantry applications – via an industrial controller from ASC, a worldwide leading manufacturer of modular motion controllers, who was taken over by PI at the beginning of 2017.
Precision Motion and Positioning Technologies Overview by PIoktober 5, 2017
Optimized for High Throughput and a Long Lifetime: Precision Miniature Hexapod for Industrial Applicationsseptember 23, 2017
Parallel-kinematic hexapods offer six degrees of freedom when positioning in a compact space and work with considerably more precision than is possible with serial, stacked systems. Many applications in industry and research benefit from this and include for example, micro manufacturing, medicine technology, camera positioning for optical inspection or photonics. In order to meet the ever-increasing demand from customers for high throughput and robustness and the highest possible positioning accuracy, PI (Physik Instrumente) has further optimized the proven H-811 miniature hexapod.
Air Bearings: When to Use and When to Avoid in Your Motion Applicationaugustus 30, 2017
Most motion applications are perfectly well-served by mechanical bearing guidance; but there are many cases where precision, angular repeatability, and geometric performance must be optimal or where submicron bearing rumble is problematic. An air bearing stage can help in these situations. An air-bearing stage is a rotary or linear positioner that floats on a cushion of air, using one of several preload mechanisms, nearly eliminating mechanical contact and thus wear, friction, and hysteresis effects. These are the most common indicators that an air bearing stage might be the right choice for your application (s. Fig. 1).
Miniature XY-Linear Motor Scanner Application in Photonics Alignmentjuli 28, 2017
Turning Ideas into Reality: Inauguration of the new Technology Centerjuli 27, 2017
“We want to develop the products of tomorrow in the new Technology Center so that not only, we but also our customers will be able to maintain market leadership in the future”, emphasized Markus Spanner, Chief Finance Officer at PI.
For Applications with High Demands on Dynamics and Linearity: Small, Fast Tip/Tilt Platformsjuli 11, 2017
Tip/tilt mirror systems control laser beams quickly and precisely in applications such as scanning microscopy or laser material processing and laser engraving. They are compact and offer high dynamics and linearity as well as short settling times. PI (Physik Instrumente) developed the piezo-based S-335 tip/tilt platform, which is suitable for applications with tip/tilt angles up to 35 mrad, optical deflection angles to 70 mrad and high demands on dynamics.
PI (Physik Instrumente) Supplies the Drive Technology for the Largest Optical Telescope in the Worldjuli 4, 2017
PI (Physik Instrumente) signed a contract with the European Southern Observatory, ESO for supplying the actuators for the world’s largest telescope, which is being built in Chile.
The Extremely Large Telescope, in short ELT, of ESO will have a segmented main mirror with a diameter of 39 m and a light collec-tion area of almost 1000 m² and will be the largest telescope for scientific evaluation of electromagnetic radiation in the visible and near-infrared wavelength range.
Position Fiber and Optical Components in up to Six Degrees of Freedomjuni 8, 2017
During production and inspection of components with optical data transmission, it is important to align fibers or fiber arrays for optimum connection with the highest possible accuracy. Position tolerances way under 50 nm are usual and multi-channel inputs require alignment in several axes to optimize coupling of the input and output arrays.
Piezoelectric Hemispheres in Miniature Format for Ultrasonic Sensor Applicationsmei 27, 2017
Piezoelectric hemispheres and hollow spheres are available in new sizes. The outer diameters are between 2 and 100 mm. Wall thicknesses of 0.2 mm are possible with outer diameters of up to 10 mm. Other sizes are available on customer request.
Compact Linear Stage: Precision Positioner for Microassembly and Sample Manipulationmei 20, 2017
With the L-402, PI (Physik Instrumente) now has a miniature linear stage in its range with a narrow size of only 22.5 mm that makes it possible to easily integrate into even the most confined installation space.
New Piezo Walking Drive – Nanometer Precision Positioning in Industrial Applicationsmei 10, 2017
If large optics, detectors or camera set-ups in industrial applications need to be positioned with nanometer precision, drive solutions are necessary that not only work with the required precision, but can also withstand the high continuous load. The solution supplier of drive technology and positioning systems, Physik Instrumente (PI) has added PICMAWalk walking drives to its extensive product portfolio for those types of applications.
High-Precision and Flexible Multi-Axis Combinations for Industry and Researchmei 3, 2017
PI (Physik Instrumente) offers a new range of Z, rotation, and linear stages for applications in industry and research that demand high cycle numbers and high precision.
The basis for this is formed by the L-511 linear stage series with travel ranges up to 155 mm and minimum incremental motion of up to 0.1 µm. The L-310 Z stages and L-611 rotation stages can be
combined to make compact multi-axis systems. All versions of the positioning stages are available with high-resolution encoders and a selection of stepper and DC servo motors. Vacuum versions are also available.
Ushering in a new age of photonics manufacturingmaart 22, 2017
These are very exciting times: state-of-the-art technological developments are happening faster and faster. We are turning science fiction into reality. Earlier this month I travelled to Brussels to talk about one of the most important technological developments I have seen in my career: parallelism in automated photonic alignment.
High-Speed 12-Axis Automated Silicon Photonics Alignment System FMPAjanuari 25, 2017
PI (Physik Instrumente) Acquires Majority Shares in ACS Motion Control: Positioning Systems for Industrial Applicationsjanuari 21, 2017
PI (Physik Instrumente), a company with headquarters in Karlsruhe, Germany, has stood for technical excellence and continuous progress in preci-sion positioning for a number of decades. The target of the PI Group is to develop this market and technological leadership even further and therefore secure a decisive competitive advantage for its cus-tomers. The acquisition of 80 % of the Israeli ACS Motion Control, a developer and manufacturer of high-end motion controllers and drives for multi-axis motion systems worldwide, was an important step forward.
Piezo Systems for Microscopy, the Semiconductor Industry, and Photonics Ready for Use Even Fasterdecember 10, 2016
Piezo systems are suitable for applications that require extreme precision motion even in limited installation space. “This also includes high-precision adjustment of lenses and other optical components, which require exact positioning and tracking of biological and medical samples under a microscope or also extremely fast and at the same time, highly exact inspection of semiconductor components on the product line”, explains Dr. Mathias Bach.
The Achievable Precision of Direct Drivesoktober 22, 2016
My colleague Franz Oebels wrote this great blog about direct drives. I’m happy to share it with you:
When meeting prospects or customers about their direct drive wishes and needs, I always ask: do you want to be high dynamic AND high precision? Then you have to use a linear (voice coil) motor. Want to be high dynamic OR high precision? Then you can use a linear (voice coil) motor. Don’t need to be either high dynamic or high precision? Use something else.
Easy Integration of Piezo Components with Flexible Printed Circuitsaugustus 3, 2016
The perfect integration of piezo components into the application is always an important part of the overall product. To make integration as easy as possible for the customer, PI Ceramic now also offers piezo elements with flexible printed circuits if required.
High Precision on Travel Ranges to 52 mmjuni 14, 2016
N-565 Linear Stage Series with Piezomotor
PI uses piezoelectric stepping drives in the N-565 linear stage series. The drive principle enables repeatability in the range of a few nanometers, high guiding accuracy, and high force in a single compact unit.
Spherical Piezo Elements Enable Use in 360° Ultrasonic Applicationsjuni 8, 2016
PI Ceramic now manufactures piezo components as hemispheres and hollow spheres. These types of components are particularly suitable for use as 360° transmitters such as those used in sonar technology.
Mixed Operation of up to 40 Axes with One Controllermei 31, 2016
Mixed Operation of up to 40 Axes with One Controller
During operation, it is often necessary for several drive axes to work together. On top of that, further motion controllers are necessary, which have to be started up individually and must be connected to the higher-level control. The time and financial resources required for this should not be underestimated.
Fast Hexapod For Motion Simulationmei 10, 2016
The new H-900KSCO Hexapod from PI (Physik Instrumente) has a rotation range of up to 66° and achieves velocities of 520 mrad/s.
Compact and Robust Linear Stages at an Affordable Pricemei 4, 2016
The new linear stages in the L-406 series from PI (Physik Instrumente) offer very good performance data on compact installation space: Despite the narrow width of only 65 mm, travel accuracies up to only 0.5 µm are possible over a travel range of 25 mm.
Compact Linear Stage with Ultrasonic Piezomotorapril 29, 2016
Fast, Self-Locking, and Silent Ultrasonic piezomotors are small, fast, and inexpensive. They are especially suitable for applications with low operating cycles and can also be integrated into mobile measuring and medical devices.
New Product Series in the PICMA® Stack Multilayer Actuator Rangeapril 5, 2016
PI Ceramic is expanding its portfolio of round multilayer piezo actuators. They are now available without inner hole in lengths of 16 mm, 36 mm or 77 mm and provide travel ranges from 14 µm to 70 µm. The diameter is 16 mm.
Voice-Coil Direct Drive with Integrated Linear Encodermaart 31, 2016
Magnetic direct drives have advantages over the classical motorized, spindle-based solutions in particular with respect to wear and dynamics. Since direct drives largely dispense with moving parts in the drivetrain, there is less friction and play, and therefore more precision.
Physik Instrumente (PI) invests 13 Million Euros in a Technology Centermaart 21, 2016
PI (Physik Instrumente) is building a Technology Center at its headquarters in Karlsruhe. The cornerstone has now been laid after a long year of planning.
“Despite the large number of formal conditions, we still managed to achieve a considerable amount during this time”, reports a very pleased Dr. Karl Spanner, founder and president of the company, in his speech to a number of guests from politics and industry.
Position and Force Control with High Resolutionmaart 15, 2016
Position and Force Control with High Resolution
Magnetic direct drives have advantages when compared to classical spindle-based solutions, especially with respect to wear and dynamics. Since they largely dispense with mechanical components, there is hardly any friction, less play and therefore more precision.
Small Ultrasonic Rotation Stagesmaart 9, 2016
When It Just Has to Be Fast
Compact, fast rotation stage are needed in industry and research, for example, for testing material, for beam guidance in microscopes or Beamlines, as well as for positioning measuring heads or eccentric pumps.
Ultrasonic piezomotors are often the best choice of drive, because they are small, fast, and silent. In addition, they are also self-locking when de-energized, but can still hold the load that they move. Additional brakes are not necessary and no heat is generated when they are at rest.
Q-Motion Miniature positioning stagesfebruari 25, 2016
Q-Motion stands for a series of miniaturized stages with piezomotor drive principle. Because PI received a large number of enquiries, we noted an increased demand for these very small positioning axes and manipulators, for example, in mobile applications for measuring and medical devices, in industrial microassembly or use for research in ultrahigh vacuums and strong magnetic fields.
PI (Physik Instrumente) founds another subsidiaryjanuari 18, 2016
PI (Physik Instrumente) has acquired the majority holding in the Dutch company Applied Laser Technology (ALT) with objective of increasing the market share in the high-tech industries in the Benelux countries.
Compact L-509 Linear Stage Seriesnovember 27, 2015
Ensures Precision for High Duty Cycles
PI is introducing a new linear stage series with optional DC motor or stepper motor onto the market. The L-509 is distinguished by its compact design and a load capacity up to 100 N.
TMC Introduces Cleanbenchjuni 4, 2015
TMC, an industry leader in high-performance vibration and motion cancellation technology, has introduced CleanBench, the next generation of the company’s laboratory tables. CleanBench combines TMC’s superior Gimbal Piston air vibration isolation system with a new tabletop design that provides more stability and better ergonomics in a compact design.
High-Dynamics Hexapod uses Magnetic Direct Drivesjanuari 27, 2015
The new high-dynamics H-860KMAG Hexapod is based on the PIMag® Voice Coil magnetic drives also developed by PI. The special design with flexure joints and contact-free magnetic drive principle has neither frictional nor rolling parts for guides and joints. It allows for zero-play positioning without mechanical noise in the drivetrain. The voice coil actuators work silently without wear and have a high service life.
Mechanical perfection by Physic Instrumentenovember 11, 2014
At the X-ray light source PETRA III in the DESY research centre in Hamburg the Helmholtz-Zentrum Geesthacht (HZG) operates the Imaging Beamline P05, which includes two experimental hutches, one for nanotomography and one for microtomography. A wide range of areas, from industrial research to materials science and examination of bones in biology, can benefit from the investigation results obtained by means of the high-resolution tomographic methods on the Imaging Beamline P05.