Cryogenic Nanometric Translation Unit (CTU)

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Technology abstract

A private Spanish company which develops Advanced Mechanical Systems for operating in extreme environments or/and high performances has developed a CTU. This multipurpose device is capable of a fine closed loop positioning. It can be used as an active element in IR Instrumentation for compensating thermo-elastic deformation moving optical elements, sensors or any criogenic instrumentation.

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Technology Description

The Cryogenic Nanometric Translation Unit (CTU) is a low range (±1 mm) high resolution (<50 nm) translation unit to be used at cryogenic temperature. The unit is a multipurpose device capable of fine closed loop positioning. This device can be used as active element in IR Instrumentation for compensating thermo-elastic deformation moving optical elements or sensors. CTU motion system is based in thin flexures deformation to assure repeatability and moves in closed loop mode by means of a fine linear actuator and a calibrated non contact capacitive sensor; an open loop control mode is also possible.

Innovations & Advantages

The use of translation mechanisms in cryogenic environments is always a matter of concern because of the intrinsic cryogenic design complexity and testing constraints. The Spanish Company has completed the development of a Nanometric Translation Unit with extensive cryogenic testing and strict configuration control to ensure product performance repeatability in future manufactured units, and to provide a reference frame for current and future cryogenic fine positioning developments. 

Further Information

The Cryogenic Translation Unit (CTU) is a low range (±1 mm) high resolution (<50 nm) translation unit to be used at cryogenic temperature. The unit is a multipurpose device capable of fine closed loop positioning. This device can be used as active element in IR Instrumentation for compensating thermo-elastic deformation moving optical elements or sensors. CTU motion system is based in thin flexures deformation to assure repeatability and moves in closed loop mode by means of a fine linear actuator and a calibrated non contact capacitive sensor; an open loop control mode is also possible.
·         Key Features:
o   Suitable for Vacuum Conditions (<10-6 mbar)
o   Suitable for Cryogenics (≈12 K)
o   Main parts material: Al 6082 T6
o   The displacement mechanism is based on flexures deformation, which avoids undesirable effects as friction or backlash, and provides high repeatability performance
o   Displacement is measured by means of one capacitive sensor
o   Temperature is measured by means of calibrated PT-100 sensors on both fixed and mobile frames of the stage
·         Customized Options:
o   Capacitive Sensor: YES/NOT
o   Heaters: YES/NOT
o   Thermal Sensors: YES/NOT

Current and Potential Domains of Application

Suitable for the following applications:
-          Cryogenic mechanisms
-          Space mechanisms
-          Optical systems
-          Medical instrumentation
-          AOB