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ASI Precision Stages

Microscope stage position control systems

 

The ASI MS-2000 XYZ Automated Stage (pictured, upper) provides a high-resolution, highly repeatable means of controlling the X, Y and Z position of the microscope stage. All axes derive their precise control through the use of closed-loop DC servomotors employing high-resolution rotary encoders for positioning feedback. Optional linear encoders improve repeatability to less than 300 nm (typical) compared to the standard rotary encoder's 800 nm (typical) repeatability rating.

 

By using closed-loop control of the stage position, there is no chance that the stage will become lost, as can occur with open-loop micro-stepped stages after a number of moves and direction changes. The MS-2000 XY stage utilizes crossed-roller slides, a high-precision lead screw, and zero-backlash miniature geared DC servomotors for smooth and accurate motion. The Z-axis drive also uses ASI's proven line of closed-loop motor drives, each custom fitted to the microscope. The microprocessor-controlled MS-2000 control unit provides for RS-232 and USB communication with a host computer.

 

The MS-2000 line includes stages for upright and inverted stage microscopes. The stages for inverted microscopes, like all of ASI's stages, are designed specifically for each microscope model. This allows them to address clearance issues such as the large objective turrets of inverted microscopes. The MS-2000 inverted stage has a slim profile and accommodates a wide range of slide inserts such as the universal slide insert, which is suitable for a variety of slides and dishes. ASI also designs special purpose stages, such as the MS-2000 Low Mass stage, which reaches thermal equilibrium faster with 3/4 the mass of a regular stage while retaining ASI's legendary precision.

 

Key Features

 

 

The ASI LS-50 Linear Stage (pictured, lower) provides sub-micron accuracy, and derives precise control through the use of closed-loop DC servomotors employing high-resolution rotary encoders for positioning feedback. The stage utilizes crossed-roller slides, precision lead-screws, and zero-backlash miniature geared DC servomotors for smooth and accurate motion. The unit offers 50 mm (2") of precise travel, can be used either vertically or horizontally, and can carry loads up to 4.5 Kg (10 lbs).

 

The unit can be configured with a number of lead screw options. In the standard configuration, and using ASI's MS-2000 control electronics, resolutions in the 50- to 100-nm range can easily be obtained. Repeatability factors of less than 300 nm (typical) are obtainable with optional linear encoders, compared with 800 nm which is typical with other rotary encoders.

 

The MS-2000 controller accepts industry standard commands, provides automatic backlash correction, and allows RS-232 or USB communication with a host computer.