Thursday, 20 January 2011

Fast piezo focusing systems for microscopy

Piezo systems specialist PI introduces a new, more affordable series of Fast Piezo Focusing devices at the 2011 BIOS (Biomedical Optics) meeting, the world’s largest and most prestigious international biomedical optics and imaging conference, held in conjunction with SPIE’s Photonics West.

The new PIFOC system packages are designed to improve results in fast focusing & lens positioning as well as in deconvolution/3D imaging, and to reduce costs at the same time.

Features include:

* Complete System with Fast Digital Controller & Software.
* Choice of Travel Ranges: 100 µm, 250µm, 400 µm.
* Sub-nm Resolution, Ideal for Fast Autofocus Applications.
* Choice of Position Feedback Sensors: Piezoresistive (lower cost); Capacitive (higher precision).

The PIFOC piezo objective scanner system packages consist of closed-loop piezomechanic objective positioners and custom-tuned compact ditigal servo controller/driver units. This combination provides higher performance at reduced costs.

The integrated, frictionless and high-stiffness piezo flexure drive ensures fast response and short settling times, as well as exceptional guiding accuracy. The settling time of less than 10 ms increases throughput and allows for rapid Z-stack acquisition.

The digital controller provides several advantages compared to the conventional analog controllers of the fast focussing systems currently available: higher linearity, improved settling performance, quick adaptation to changing motion requirements and access to advanced automation features.

The included software facilitates system setup and allows switching of different sets of parameters on-the-fly. For the user this means extracting the maximum performance from the piezo focusing mechanism all the time, no matter what size objective is used or whether aggressive long-travel stepping or smooth nanometer size dithering motion is needed. Since jumpers and trim pots no longer have to be accessed to make changes, system integration becomes much more straightforward.

System setup with the included user-interface software is fast and easy; interfacing to the customers' software is facilitated with the included LabVIEW drivers and DLLs. Drivers for leading image acquisition software packages such as MetaMorph and µManager are available.