Micromechanical Testing and Assembly System with Nanoindentator - FT-MTA03

The FT-MTA03 Micromechanical Testing and Assembly System is a highly versatile testing instrument used to accurately quantify mechanical properties and geometry/dimensions in the micro- and nanoscale. This system is a combination of the capabilities of a versatile microstructure analyzer, a stylus profilometer, a micro-tensile tester and a nanoindenter.

It enables obtaining force measurements within +/-200 mN with a resolution of 0.5 nN and displacements from 0.1 nm to 29 mm along three axes. Additionally, it is also possible to reconfigure the FT-MTA03 in order to meet a wide range of requirements and applications, offering a complete solution for the comprehensive analysis of microstructures.

The FT-MTA03 can be employed for vertical testing, horizontal testing or testing from different angles. Equipping the FT-MTA03 with varied types of the FemtoTools FT-S Microforce Sensing Probes, enables the instruments to be used for measurements in the nanonewton to the millinewton range.

The FT-MTA03 can also be equipped with the FT-G Microgrippers series for microassembly tasks or sample preparation, in addition to being used for mechanical testing and profiling.

System Capabilities

  • Microstructure Analysis
  • Micro Tensile Testing
  • Nanoindentation
  • Stylus Profilometry

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Micromechanical Testing Module

The micromechanical testing module includes a 3-axis nanopositioning platform (stick-slip actuation), a FT-S Microforce Sensing Probe, a 3-axis piezoscanner and a 2-axis sample positioning stage. All of these positioners are motorized and also capable of being controlled with the FemtoTools software suite.

The combination of sensors and actuators enables the user-friendly micromechanical and topographical metrology and the precise tip-to-sample alignment. For large range measurements, the piezoelectric stick-slip actuator has the potential to carry out mechanical tests along three axes over a range of up to 29 mm with a position resolution of 1 nm.

For short range measurements, the 3-axis piezoscanner is used to measure over a range of up to 50 µm with a position resolution of 0.1 nm along three axes. The piezoscanner is particularly suitable for continuous, rapid measurements.

Microscope Module

The superior performance FT-MTA03 digital microscope module has a very large working distance of 95 mm. It is possible to tilt the microscope over a range of 180° around the sample. This allows the visualization of the sample at different angles while preventing the microgripper or sensor from obstructing the view of the sample.

The microscope also features a 7:1 motorized optical zoom and motorized focus, to observe samples within a field of view ranging from 9.5 mm x 7.1 mm down to 1.4 mm x 1.0 mm. Three different adjustable LED illumination principles can be selected: coaxial through-the-lens illumination, diffuse backlight, and ringlight.

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Typical Applications


Both position-controlled and forcecontrolled nanoindentation are offered by the FT-MTA03 for the localized material testing of small volumes. The tiltable microscope enables the real-time visual observation of the sample during the load application. The FT-MTA03 is considered to be a suitable tool for soft material characterization because of its displacement range in combination with the low-force sensing capabilities.

Micro Tensile Testing

A variety of options are offered by the FT-MTA03 for the testing of micron-sized fibers (electrospun, silk, textile) down to extremely small scales. Typical measurements include the fracture testing of micro-composites and creep and stress relaxation testing. Horizontal, in-liquid tensile testing of biological is also possible.

Stylus Profilometry

The FT-MTA03 features ultra-low force stylus profilometry capabilities for developing 3d and 2d topography maps of fragile and soft samples. Another feature of the FT-MTA03 is the measurement of high aspect ratio structures in any direction of space.

Microstructure Analysis

The FT-MTA03 is a highly adaptable force-deflection testing machine with a force range from 0.5 nN up to 200 mN. The out-of-plane (vertical) and in-plane (horizontal) testing capabilities make the FT-MTA03 a versatile tool that meets the requirements of the R&D community in both industry and academia.

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