Thursday, August 22, 2013
There are multiple ways in which to communicate with a nanopositioning controller. A common way to command a stage is by using the standard BNC analog inputs of the controller. Each channel is equipped with analog control and sensor monitor BNC connectors. A voltage range of -10V to 10V is calibrated so that the maximum travel distance is used. Stages can also be calibrated for other input ranges as well. nPoint controllers have 20 bit resolution allowing for sub-nanometer control within the analog input range.
DAQ (data acquisition) cards are often used in conjunction with a PC to send analog signals to the controller. There are a variety of these cards available from multiple vendors. National Instruments is a well known provider of DAQ cards. They also have cards that can be used for a variety of digital system interfaces.
nPoint also provides AFM interface capabilities to allow for closed-loop scanner upgrades for existing Agilent, Ambios, and Veeco AFMs. These come in a "plug and play" type kit where little changes for the user with the AFM software, but allows for longer travel ranges and closed-loop control of an nPoint nanopositioning system.
Custom interface options are available for nPoint controllers. Please inquire with any specific questions or if interested in setting up a custom system interface project with nPoint.