Digital Piezo Translators

Digital Piezo Translators (DPTs) are piezo-electric translation devices capable of moving up to 70 microns with very high linearity and essentially perfect repeatability. Hysteresis is less than a nanometer. The DPT comes out of more than 100 man-years of R&D and attains accuracy 20 times higher than any other device on the market.

Overcoming Problems Associated with Ordinary Piezo-Electric Translators

Ordinary piezo-electric translators are non-linear and exhibit hysteresis and creep. To overcome these problems a position sensor is built into each DPT. The output of this sensor controls the voltage on the piezo-electric stack so as to remove the hysteresis, non-linearity and creep.

Each DPT from Queensgate Instruments is supplied with a calibration curve, which can serve as a basis to correct the very small residual non-linearity.

The Control Module for Digital Piezo-Electric Translators

The position sensing circuitry and piezo drive amplifiers have been miniaturised and packaged in a stand alone Control Module which requires only ±15 V DC to operate. This makes the DPT-C particularly suitable for volume OEM applications. The Control Module comes complete with analogue input, 14 bit parallel digital interface, status lines and position monitor.

Mounting and Interfacing the Control Module

A Control Module is required to operate a DPT-C. The Control Module can be mounted in either the AX101 (1-channel) or AX301 (3-channel) Host Unit, which provides ±15V for module(s), position display, optional IEEE-488 or RS232 interfaces, and allow manual control of the translators. A variety of accessories are available. Host units require mains supply. Alternatively the CM can be used stand alone, powered by ±15V DC supply. The CM can interface to a computer, via a digital I/O card mounted inside the computer (e.g. National InstrumentsTM PC-DIO-24 - 24 lines of digital I/O).

The Key to Accuracy and Repeatability in Queensgate’s DPT’s

The key to the outstanding positioning accuracy and repeatability achieved by the DPT-C is Queensgate’s unique capacitance sensor technology. Each DPT-C contains a capacitance position sensor, which has picometer sensitivity. Changes in the length of the DPT-C are detected by this sensor and used to control its length.

Ensuring Accuracy in the DPT-C

The DPT-C's are made of Zerodur (a low thermal expansion coefficient glass) and Invar to minimise temporal and thermal drift. The DPT-C operates in a closed servo-loop incorporating an almost perfect integrator stage - as a result the DPT-C is extremely stiff. As loads on the device change its length so the servo loop responds, changing the voltage on the piezo stack to correct for these perturbations. The DPT-C has a slew rate of 1μm.ms-1, and a noise level of less than 1 nm rms.

System Component Flexibility

The capacitance sensors developed for the DPT-C are now also available as separate units, for other applications, which demand the highest possible position sensitivity. Please contact Queensgate Instruments for further information.

This information has been sourced, reviewed and adapted from materials provided by Queensgate Instruments.

For more information on this source, please visit Queensgate Instruments.

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