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Piezo Objective Scanner


  • Enables Objective Positioning and Z-Stack Acquisition with Resolution Down to 1 nm
  • Travel Range: 600 µm ± 10% in Open Loop; 450 µm in Closed Loop
  • Support for Heavy Objectives up to 500 g

PFM450E

Piezo Objective Scanner and Paired Controller

PFMA01

M32 x 0.75 Microscope Adapter

PFMA02

M32 x 0.75 Objective Adapter

Related Items


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Exploded View
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Exploded View
Assembled View
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Assembled View

The scanner is installed by threading a brass adapter into the microscope's objective holder with the included spanner wrench and tightening a flexure clamp around the adapter with the included 5/64" (2 mm) hex key. The objective is attached to the scanner using a separate brass adapter and flexure clamp.

Features

  • Fast Acquisitions and High Frame Rates Enabled by 25 ms Typical Settling Time
  • Maximum Clear Aperture of Ø29.0 mm Supports Large-Field-of-View Objectives
  • Capacitive Feedback Sensors Provide Resolution Down to 1 nm and Help User Actively Compensate for Drift
  • Quick-Release Flexure Clamps Allow Fast Objective Exchange
  • Compatible with Upright, Inverted, and Rotating Microscopes
  • Standalone Kinesis® and APT™ Interfaces, ThorImage®LS Integration, and Control via External Voltage
  • Software Permits Easy Tuning for Different Objective Weights

The PFM450E Piezo Objective Positioner is designed for fine focus adjustment and high-speed Z-stack acquisition. Engineered for compatibility with Thorlabs' Bergamo® II Multiphoton Microscopes, our Confocal Imaging System, our Cerna® Microscopy Platform, and third-party microscopes, it bypasses the relatively slow stepper motors built into microscopes in order to quickly obtain scans of 3D volumes. Built-in capacitive feedback sensors allow the module to provide 1 nm resolution in open-loop operation and 3 nm resolution in closed-loop operation, enabling active compensation for short- and long-term drifts.

With a clear aperture of up to Ø29.0 mm and a maximum load of 500 g (1.1 lbs), the piezo objective holder easily accommodates the large-field-of-view objectives commonly used in multiphoton and confocal microscopy. In order to permit easy switching between objectives, the piezo stage is attached to the microscope and objective by independent adapters. This design choice allows the objective to be removed without disconnecting the rest of the assembly. Adapters are available for M32 x 0.75, M27 x 0.75, SM1 (1.035"-40), M26 x 0.706, M25 x 0.75, and RMS (0.800"-36) threads.

Each scanner is shipped with a piezo controller that has been factory calibrated to the specific scanner. Objective positioning is supported through the included standalone Kinesis and APT GUIs, our ThorImageLS image acquisition software, an externally supplied control voltage, or the MZF001 Joystick Console (sold separately). See the Software & External Control tab for more details. The controller offers USB and RS-232 interfaces for computer control; a BNC input for sine, sawtooth, and square wave drive signals; a BNC output that gives either positioning feedback from the scanner's built-in capacitive sensors or a signal proportional to the piezo drive voltage; and a connector for the MZF001 joystick. In addition, a DB15 connector provides signals that can be used for synchronization with external equipment.

Small Steps
Click to Enlarge

We applied a square wave drive signal to our piezo controller to move a 16X physiology objective (Item # N16XLWD-PF) in 10 µm increments. The scanner's built-in capacitive sensors demonstrate that the targeted position is achieved within the 25 ms typical settling time without ringing.
Z-Stack with Flyback
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We used a sawtooth drive signal to acquire a Z-stack with a 16X physiology objective (Item # N16XLWD-PF). As shown by the built-in capacitive sensors, we obtained excellent linearity over the 300 µm scan range, creating evenly spaced image slices.
Piezo Objective Scanner Specificationsa
Open-Loop Travel Range 600 µm ± 10%
Closed-Loop Travel Range 450 µm
Open-Loop Resolution 1 nm
Closed-Loop Resolution 3 nm
Maximum Clear Apertureb Ø29.0 mm (Ø1.14")
Maximum Objective Diameter 38.4 mm (1.51")
Maximum Loadc 500 g (1.1 lbs)
Settling Time 25 ms (Typical) for 1 - 100 µm Steps
Resonant Frequency 120 Hz ± 20% for 150 g Load
Position Linearity Error ±0.05%
Tilt Angle X-Axisd: ±35 µrad
Y-Axise: ±15 µrad
Capacitance 8.0 µF ± 15%
Cable Length 6 ft (2 m)
Dimensions 2.72" x 2.36" x 1.38"
(69.0 mm x 60.0 mm x 35.0 mm)
Weight 380 g (0.84 lbs)
Operating Temperature Range 5 to 40 °C
  • A complete list of specifications is available in the manual (PDF link).
  • The clear aperture is set by the microscope adapter and reaches the maximum of Ø29.0 mm when an M32 x 0.75 adapter is used.
  • The center of mass of the load should be as close as possible to the scanner for best performance.
  • The X axis is parallel to the 2.72" (69.0 mm) dimension in the drawing below.
  • The Y axis is parallel to the 2.36" (60.0 mm) dimension in the drawing below.
Controller Specificationsa
Piezoelectric Output
Drive Voltage Range -30 V to +150 V
Drive Voltage Stability 100 ppm over 24 Hours
(After 30-Minute Warm-Up)
Drive Voltage Noise <0.5 mV (RMS)b
Output Current 150 mA
External Input BNC
Input Voltage Rangec -10 V to +10 V
Open Loop 1 V Input = 15 V Drive Voltage
Closed Loop 1 V Input = 45 µm Displacement
Input Impedance 10 kΩ
Absolute Maximum Input Voltage ±20 VDC
External Output BNC
Output Voltage Range 0 V to +10 V
Outputs Unprocessed Feedback, Linearized Feedback, or Signal Proportional to Drive Voltage; Selectable in the Software
Output Impedance 10 kΩ (Minimum)
Physical Specifications
Input Powerd Input Voltage 24 VDC ± 5%
Input Current <2 A
Dimensions 205.0 mm x 147.0 mm x 68.3 mm
(8.07" x 5.79" x 2.69")
Weight 1.65 kg (3.63 lbs)
Operating Temperature Range 5 to 40 °C
  • A complete list of specifications is available in the manual (PDF link).
  • Measurement Bandwidth: 20 Hz - 100 kHz
  • The drive voltage or objective displacement that is determined by the input voltage is added to the value that is set in the APT GUI. See the Software & External Control tab for details.
  • A region-specific power cord is included with the PFM450E.
PFM450 Mechanical Drawing
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Mechanical Drawing of Scanner
PPC001 Piezo Controller Front Panel
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Front Panel of PPC001 Piezo Controller
In the software, the front panel LEDs can be set to three intensities: full, dim, or off. The dim mode, shown above, is the default setting.

PPC001 Controller Back Panel
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Back Panel of PPC001 Piezo Controller
Information on the connectors is available in the Pin Diagrams tab.

Software

APT Version 3.22.1

The APT Software Package includes a GUI for control of the Piezo Objective Scanner.

Also Available:

  • Communications Protocol

Software Download

Software

Kinesis Version 1.11.5

The Kinesis Software Package includes a GUI for control of the Piezo Objective Scanner.

Also Available:

  • Communications Protocol

Software Download

Capture Setup Tab in ThorImageLS
Click to Enlarge

Z Control Panel from ThorImage®LS Capture Setup Tab

Capture Tab in ThorImageLS
Click to Enlarge

Fast Z Panel from ThorImageLS Capture Tab

The scanner can be driven using the included standalone Kinesis® GUI, the legacy APT™ GUI, our ThorImage®LS software for Bergamo® II and confocal microscopes, an externally supplied control voltage, or the MZF001 Joystick Console. In addition, a DB15 connector provides signals that can be used for synchronization with external equipment. Complete details on control are available in the PFM450E manual for Kinesis and APT (PDF links).

Open-Loop Operation vs. Closed-Loop Operation
There are two operating modes for positioning the objective: open loop and closed loop. In open-loop operation, which supports a travel range of 600 µm ± 10%, the user controls the piezo drive voltage (in V). The applied drive voltage corresponds to some amount of objective displacement. For piezoelectric materials, this displacement does not depend linearly on the applied voltage: it exhibits nonlinearity and hysteresis. It is therefore not straightforward to position the objective by choosing the drive voltage. The scanner's built-in capacitive feedback sensors measure the objective displacement with 1 nm resolution in open-loop operation.

In closed-loop operation, which supports a travel range of 450 µm, the user directly controls the objective displacement (in µm). The built-in capacitive feedback sensors measure the objective displacement with 3 nm resolution in closed-loop operation.

Piezo Objective Scanner GUI
Click to Enlarge

Kinesis® GUI Panel
Piezo Objective Scanner GUI
Click to Enlarge

APT™ GUI Panel
Piezo Objective Scanner GUI
Click to Enlarge

APT Loop Tuning tab. The default settings are for a 150 g objective. As a rule of thumb, for a 2X increase in objective weight, divide all PID parameters by 2 and divide all notch filter settings by the square root of 2. The default settings can be restored in the General tab.

Standalone Kinesis and APT GUIs
The Kinesis and APT GUIs support both open- and closed-loop operation. The piezo drive voltage or objective displacement can be directly typed in, changed by dragging the output knob (APT only), or incremented or decremented in fixed, user-defined amounts.

In addition, the GUIs enable software-based PID loop tuning. The default settings are designed to provide stable operation for most small- and medium-sized objectives, but fine tuning the PID loop helps account for the specific microscope and objective in use in the experiment, reducing positional overshoots and ringing about the commanded objective position.

Screenshots are shown to the left.

ThorImageLS Image Acquisition Software
ThorImageLS supports closed-loop operation. It allows the movement of the objective scanner to be controlled from the same interface as Thorlabs' Bergamo II and confocal microscopes, greatly simplifying experimental integration. For convenience, controls for the piezo objective scanner are found in both the Capture Setup and Capture tabs. Screenshots are shown to the right.

Externally Supplied Control Voltage
In this mode, the scanner supports both open- and closed-loop operation. The voltage is applied using the external input BNC connector on the controller. In open-loop operation, a 1 V change in input voltage results in a 15 V change in drive voltage, while in closed-loop operation, a 1 V change in input voltage results in a 45 µm change in objective displacement. The drive voltage or objective displacement that is determined by the input voltage is added to the value that is set in the APT GUI. If this sum would result in a drive voltage outside the -30 V to +150 V range, those limits will not be exceeded.

The external input BNC connector is typically used with sine, sawtooth, or square drive signals. The maximum frequency of the signal that should be applied depends upon the waveform. For large periodic waveforms (i.e., sine waves that provide >200 µm of total displacement), the recommended drive frequencies are:

  • ≤25 Hz for Loads up to 150 g,
  • ≤20 Hz for Loads from 150 g to 250 g,
  • ≤15 Hz for Loads from 250 g to 400 g, and
  • ≤10 Hz for Loads from 400 g to 500 g.

For staircase waveforms with step sizes up to 50 µm, the minimum time between steps can be as small as the 25 ms typical settling time.

MZF001 Joystick Console
The joystick supports closed-loop operation. It provides intuitive, tactile, hand-operated control of the objective position. The rate of change of the position is set by a rate potentiometer knob.

DB15 Connector
For photostimulation, electrophysiology, and optogenetics applications, the DB15 connector on the controller provides several electrical signals that can be used to synchronize the movement of the piezo objective scanner with other equipment, such as multiphoton imaging lasers, patch clamp electrodes, and LED light sources. Details on this connector are available in Appendix A.2 of the manual (PDF link).

Piezo Controller Pin Diagrams

Stage Connector

Stage Controller Connector

Pin Description Pin Description
1 HV Ground (Return) 8 HV Ground (Return)
2 Not Used 9 Not Used
3 Not Used 10 Stage IDb
4 Sine Wave Drive Output 11 Low Voltage Ground
5 Not Used 12 Low Voltage Ground
6 +15 V (Preamp Supply)a 13 Piezo ID (Legacy Stages)b
7 Low Voltage Ground 14 Position Sense Input
(Strain Gauge)
Coaxial
Male
Position Sense Input
(Capacitive)
15 -15 V (Preamp Supply)a
Coaxial
Female
HV Output
  • Power supply for the piezo actuator feedback circuit. Do not use this pin to drive any other circuits or devices.
  • This signal is applicable only to Thorlabs actuators. It enables the system to identify the piezo extension associated with the actuator.

User Connectora

Female DB15

User

Pin Description Return Pin Description Return
1 Digital Output 1 5, 9, 10 9 Digital Ground -
2 Digital Output 2 5, 9, 10 10 Digital Ground -
3 Digital Output 3 5, 9, 10 11 For Future Use
(Trigger Out)
5, 9, 10
4 Digital Output 4 5, 9, 10 12 For Future Use
(Trigger In)b
5, 9, 10
5 Digital Ground - 13 Digital Input 4 5, 9, 10
6 Digital Input 1 5, 9, 10 14 5 V Supply Output 5, 9, 10
7 Digital Input 2 5, 9, 10 15 5 V Supply Output 5, 9, 10
8 Digital Input 3 5, 9, 10
  • Details on this connector are available in Appendix A.2 of the manual (PDF link).
  • This pin effectively replicates the function of the Closed Loop button on the front panel. The unit can be switched between open-loop and closed-loop operation by connecting an external, normally-open button between this pin and ground. A 5 V TTL signal can also be used.

Computer Control via RS-232

Male DB9

9Pin DIN Male

Pin Description Pin Description
1 Not Connected 6 Not Connected
2 RX (Controller Input) 7 Not Connected
3 TX (Controller Output) 8 Not Connected
4 Not Connected 9 Not Connected
5 Ground

Computer Control via USB

Female Type B USB

DB9 Female

External Input

BNC Female

BNC Female

Input Voltage: -10 V to +10 V
Input Impedance: 10 kΩ

External Output

BNC Female

BNC Female

Output Voltage: 0 V to +10 V
Output Impedance (Min): 10 kΩ

Joystick Connector

Female Mini DIN

Handset Connector
Pin Description Pin Description
1 RX (Controller Input) 4 +5 V, 100 mA Supply for Joystick
2 Ground 5 TX (Controller Output)
3 Ground 6 Ground
PFM450E Shipping List
Click to Enlarge

Items Included with PFM450E (North American Power Cord Shown)

Item # PFM450E consists of the following:

  • PFM450 Piezo Objective Scanner
  • PPC001 Piezo Controller
  • Spanner Wrench for Adapter Installation
  • 5/64" (2 mm) Hex Key and Two Extra Cap Screws for Piezo Objective Scanner's Flexure Clamps
  • Power Supply with Region-Specific Power Cord
  • USB Cable for Computer Connections
  • Storage Case with Slots for Piezo Objective Scanner, Spanner Wrench, and Brass Adapters

The brass adapters required to connect the piezo objective scanner to the microscope and the objective are sold separately, as is the optional MZF001 Joystick Console.


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Posted Comments:
Poster:kwestla
Posted Date:2016-07-26 14:43:12.873
Any plans on making M26 adapters for mitutoyo/motic systems?
Poster:bhallewell
Posted Date:2016-07-29 11:22:16.0
Response from Ben at Thorlabs: Thank you for your question here. This is an option that we are looking into bringing into our range of objective adapters in the coming weeks.

Piezo Objective Mount and Paired Controller

Objective Installation
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Since the flexure clamps are independent, the objective can be exchanged without detaching the scanner.
Flexure Screws
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The microscope and objective adapters are installed in the scanner using two independent flexure clamps. The clamps are tightened using the 5/64" (2 mm) hex key included with the unit.
  • Includes All Items Shown in PFM450E Shipping List Tab
  • Requires Microscope and Objective Adapters Sold Below

The PFM450 Piezo Objective Scanner and PPC001 Piezo Controller are sold as Item # PFM450E in a matched, factory-calibrated pair. Each is labeled with an identical serial number. It is not recommended to operate the piezo objective scanner with a different controller.

For large periodic waveforms (i.e., sine waves that provide >200 µm of total displacement), the recommended drive frequencies are:

  • ≤25 Hz for Loads up to 150 g,
  • ≤20 Hz for Loads from 150 g to 250 g,
  • ≤15 Hz for Loads from 250 g to 400 g, and
  • ≤10 Hz for Loads from 400 g to 500 g.
Based on your currency / country selection, your order will ship from Newton, New Jersey  
+1 Qty Docs Part Number - Universal Price Available / Ships
PFM450E Support Documentation
PFM450EPiezo Objective Scanner and Paired Controller
$9,210.00
Lead Time

Microscope Adapters (Pick at Least One)

These externally threaded brass adapters connect the scanner to the microscope's objective holder. The bottom contains two spanner wrench slots for installing the adapter. A compatible spanner wrench is included with the PFM450E.

The PFMA01E Extended Microscope Adapter with M32 x 0.75 objective threads offers a thicker flange than the PFMA01 Microscope Adapter, which is useful for microscopes with recessed objective threads, such as our Bergamo II multiphoton microscopes. The PFMA01E's inner surface is also roughened to improve signal collection for multiphoton microscopy.

M32 x 0.75 Microscope Adapter
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PFMA01
M32 x 0.75
Microscope Adapter
M32 x 0.75 Microscope Adapter
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PFMA01E
Extended M32 x 0.75 Microscope Adapter
M27 x 0.75 Microscope Adapter
Click to Enlarge

PFMA03
M27 x 0.75
Microscope Adapter
SM1 Microscope Adapter
Click to Enlarge

PFMA09
SM1 (1.035"-40) Microscope Adapter
M26 Microscope Adapter
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PFMA11
M26 x 0.706
Microscope Adapter
M25 x 0.75 Microscope Adapter
Click to Enlarge

PFMA05
M25 x 0.75
Microscope Adapter
RMS Microscope Adapter
Click to Enlarge

PFMA07
RMS (0.800"-36) Microscope Adapter
Based on your currency / country selection, your order will ship from Newton, New Jersey  
+1 Qty Docs Part Number - Universal Price Available / Ships
PFMA01 Support Documentation
PFMA01Microscope Adapter for Piezo Objective Scanner, External M32 x 0.75 Threads
$81.75
Today
PFMA01E Support Documentation
PFMA01EMicroscope Adapter for Piezo Objective Scanner, External M32 x 0.75 Threads, Extended Flange
$81.75
Today
PFMA03 Support Documentation
PFMA03Microscope Adapter for Piezo Objective Scanner, External M27 x 0.75 Threads
$81.75
Today
PFMA09 Support Documentation
PFMA09Microscope Adapter for Piezo Objective Scanner, External SM1 Threads
$81.75
Today
PFMA11 Support Documentation
PFMA11Customer Inspired!Microscope Adapter for Piezo Objective Scanner, External M26 x 0.706 Threads
$90.00
Today
PFMA05 Support Documentation
PFMA05Microscope Adapter for Piezo Objective Scanner, External M25 x 0.75 Threads
$81.75
Today
PFMA07 Support Documentation
PFMA07Microscope Adapter for Piezo Objective Scanner, External RMS Threads
$81.75
Today

Objective Adapters (Pick at Least One)

These internally threaded brass adapters connect the scanner to the objective. The top contains two spanner wrench slots for installing the adapter. A compatible spanner wrench is included with the PFM450E.

M32 x 0.75 Objective Adapter
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PFMA02
M32 x 0.75
Objective Adapter
M27 x 0.75 Objective Adapter
Click to Enlarge

PFMA04
M27 x 0.75
Objective Adapter
SM1 Objective Adapter
Click to Enlarge

PFMA10
SM1 (1.035"-40)
Objective Adapter
M26 Objective Adapter
Click to Enlarge

PFMA12
M26 x 0.706
Objective Adapter
M25 x 0.75 Objective Adapter
Click to Enlarge

PFMA06
M25 x 0.75
Objective Adapter
RMS Objective Adapter
Click to Enlarge

PFMA08
RMS (0.800"-36)
Objective Adapter
Based on your currency / country selection, your order will ship from Newton, New Jersey  
+1 Qty Docs Part Number - Universal Price Available / Ships
PFMA02 Support Documentation
PFMA02Objective Adapter for Piezo Objective Scanner, Internal M32 x 0.75 Threads
$64.50
Today
PFMA04 Support Documentation
PFMA04Objective Adapter for Piezo Objective Scanner, Internal M27 x 0.75 Threads
$63.25
Today
PFMA10 Support Documentation
PFMA10Objective Adapter for Piezo Objective Scanner, Internal SM1 Threads
$63.25
Today
PFMA12 Support Documentation
PFMA12Customer Inspired!Objective Adapter for Piezo Objective Scanner, Internal M26 x 0.706 Threads
$69.50
Today
PFMA06 Support Documentation
PFMA06Objective Adapter for Piezo Objective Scanner, Internal M25 x 0.75 Threads
$63.25
Today
PFMA08 Support Documentation
PFMA08Objective Adapter for Piezo Objective Scanner, Internal RMS Threads
$63.25
Today

Joystick Console

The MZF001 Joystick Console provides intuitive, tactile, hand-operated control of the objective position. The rate of change of the position is set by the rate potentiometer knob on the left, enabling either quick or high-precision movement. It is encased in an anodized aluminum housing and measures 22.8 cm x 13.3 cm x 66.3 cm (9.0" x 5.2" x 2.6").

Based on your currency / country selection, your order will ship from Newton, New Jersey  
+1 Qty Docs Part Number - Universal Price Available / Ships
MZF001 Support Documentation
MZF001Single-Axis Joystick Console
$1,015.00
Today
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