This bundle consists of the MAX302(/M) 3-Axis NanoMax Flexure Stage, three DRV3 Differential Micrometers, and the MDT693B Three-Channel Piezo Controller at a savings over purchasing these items separately. Together, these items provide local and remote control of the position of our MAX302 NanoMax stage along X, Y, and Z with sub-micron resolution. Each axis has a maximum travel range of 4 mm. The DRV3 differential micrometers provide 4 mm of coarse travel and 300 µm of fine travel, with a calculated fine resolution of 100 nm. The embedded piezo elements provide an additional 20 µm of fine travel at a resolution of 20 nm.
This bundle includes three SMC cables, three SMC-to-BNC adapters (MDC40211), and a region-specific power cord selected at the time of the order.
MAX302 3-Axis NanoMax Flexure Stage Designed for alignment applications requiring sub-micron resolution, the patented flexure design of the MAX302 ensures low crosstalk, high stability, and long-term reliability. This stage is compatible with our entire family of flexure stage accessories. In a typical multi-axis stacked stage, touching one of the two axes that are not referenced to "ground" will result in unwanted motion within the assembly. Since each of the axes in a NanoMax stage are coupled directly to the base of the stage, these adverse effects are eliminated. For more information, please see the full MAX302 presentation.
DRV3 Differential Micrometer The DRV3 features two large knobs for coarse and fine adjustment. The coarse adjuster knob provides 500 µm/rev over a 4 mm range, while the fine adjuster knob provides 50 µm/rev over a 300 µm range. The calculated fine drive resolution is 100 nm. The rubber grip on the fine adjuster knob reduces heat transfer when making small adjustments, improving stability. For more information, please see the full DRV3 presentation.
MDT693B Three-Channel Open-Loop Piezo Controller The MDT693B piezo controller features three precise, low-noise, independently controllable output channels and is capable of supporting the MAX302's absolute maximum control voltage of 75 V. The control voltage can be modified using rotary knobs on the front panel and by providing an external signal through BNC or USB 2.0. For more information, please see the full MDT693B presentation.
MAX302 Three-Axis Flexure Stage
Travel per Axis
<1.54 lbs (<0.7 kg) Recommended 2.2 lbs (1 kg) Max
2.46" (62.5 mm)
Optical Axis Height
2.95" (75 mm)
1.65 lbs (0.75 kg)
Piezo Voltage Range
0 - 75 V
Piezo Travel Range
20 nm (Calculated)
Piezo Bidirectional Repeatability
Piezo Absolute On-Axis Accuracy
375 Hz (No Load) 200 Hz (275 g Load) 150 Hz (575 g Load)
Arcuate Cross Talk
As a Function of X-Axis Positiona
As a Function of Z-Axis Positionb
Arcuate Motion in Z-Axis
Arcuate Motion in X-Axis
a. The typical measured cross talk to the Z axis for a commanded movement in X. In these measurements, the Y axis was positioned at 0 mm. The effect on the Z axis is expected to be similar for commanded movements in Y with the X axis positioned at 0 mm. The maximum measured cross talk to the Z axis was <88 µm. b. The typical measured cross talk to the X axis for a commanded movement in Z. In these measurements, the Y axis was positioned at 0 mm. The effect on the Y axis is expected to be similar for commanded movements in Z with the X axis positioned at 0 mm. The maximum measured cross talk to the X axis was <66 µm.
DRV3 Differential Actuator
Coarse: 4 mm (0.16") When Used with MAX302c Fine: 300 µm
Translation per Revolution
Coarse: 500 µm/rev Fine: 50 µm/rev
Fine: 100 nm (Calculated)
c. The DRV3's maximum coarse travel range is 8 mm, but the MAX302's maximum travel range is 4 mm.
MDT693B Three-Channel Piezo Controller
Number of Channels
BNC (One BNC-to-SMC Adapter per Channel Included)
0 - 75 V, 0 - 100 V, or 0 - 150 V (Selected by Switch on Rear)
Output Voltage Resolution When Using Knobs
1.1 mV (for 75 V Output Voltage Setting) 1.5 mV (for 100 V Output Voltage Setting) 2.2 mV (for 150 V Output Voltage Setting)
Output Current (Max)
1.5 mV (RMS) ~9.9 mV (Peak-to-Peak)
Output Impedance (Max)
150 Ω, 1.0 nF
Load Impedancee (Min)
Bandwidth (-3 dB)
9 kHz (No Load, Small Signal) 8.5 kHz (No Load, 150 Vpp)f 200 Hz (1.4 µF Piezo, 150 Vpp)f
Bandwidth Stability (-3 dB)
<0.01% Over 5 Hours
External Control through BNC
0 - 10 V
7.5 V/V ± 5% (for 75 V Output Voltage Setting) 10 V/V ± 5% (for 100 V Output Voltage Setting) 15 V/V ± 5% (for 150 V Output Voltage Setting)
Output Voltage Resolution When Using BNC
Limited by Noise of External Voltage Source
Scan Trim Gain Adjustment
80% to 120% of Sum of Master Scan External Voltage and Offset from Rotary Adjustment Knob
External Control through Command Line
Female Type B USB 2.0 Connector
16-Bit, 2.75 mV
16-Bit, 3.0 mV
7-Segment LED with Four Digits
12.18" × 4.15" × 8.55" (309.4 mm × 105.5 mm × 217.1 mm)
3.02 kg (6.65 lbs)
10 to 40 °C
100 - 240 VAC
50 - 60 Hz
Input Power (Max)
IEC60127-2/3 (250 VA, Slow Blow, Type "T")
5 mm x 20 mm
d. Tested without an external load connected (1 nF output impedance only). Adding a capacitive load, such as a piezo, will decrease the noise because the capacitance will create a low-pass filter with the output resistance. e. The smallest allowable terminating resistance. Applying lower impedances will cause the short-circuit protection to limit the output voltage. Continued use in this mode will cause circuit degradation and eventual circuit failure. f. Assume a ramp function is used. The bandwidth depends upon the load and requires a calculation for a more representative number. See Chapter 6 of the manual for details.
Knowing the rate at which a piezo is capable of changing lengths is essential in many high-speed applications. The bandwidth of a piezo controller and stack can be estimated if the following is known:
The maximum amount of current the controllers can produce. This is 0.5 A for our BPC Series Piezo Controllers, which is the driver used in the examples below.
The load capacitance of the piezo. The higher the capacitance, the slower the system.
The desired signal amplitude (V), which determines the length that the piezo extends.
The absolute maximum bandwidth of the driver, which is independent of the load being driven.
To drive the output capacitor, current is needed to charge it and to discharge it. The change in charge, dV/dt, is called the slew rate. The larger the capacitance, the more current needed:
For example, if a 100 µm stack with a capacitance of 20 µF is being driven by a BPC Series piezo controller with a maximum current of 0.5 A, the slew rate is given by
Hence, for an instantaneous voltage change from 0 V to 75 V, it would take 3 ms for the output voltage to reach 75 V.
Note: For these calculations, it is assumed that the absolute maximum bandwidth of the driver is much higher than the bandwidths calculated, and thus, driver bandwidth is not a limiting factor. Also please note that these calculations only apply for open-loop systems. In closed-loop mode, the slow response of the feedback loop puts another limit on the bandwidth.
The bandwidth of the system usually refers to the system's response to a sinusoidal signal of a given amplitude. For a piezo element driven by a sinusoidal signal of peak amplitude A, peak-to-peak voltage Vpp, and frequency f, we have:
A diagram of voltage as a function of time is shown to the right. The maximum slew rate, or voltage change, is reached at t = 2nπ, (n=0, 1, 2,...) at point a in the diagram to the right:
From the first equation, above:
For the example above, the maximum full-range (75 V) bandwidth would be
For a smaller piezo stack with 10 times lower capacitance, the results would be 10 times better, or about 1060 Hz. Or, if the peak-to-peak signal is reduced to 7.5 V (10% max amplitude) with the 100 µm stack, again, the result would be 10 times better at about 1060 Hz.
For a piezo actuator driven by a square wave of maximum voltage Vpeak and minimum voltage 0, the slew rate limits the minimum rise and fall times. In this case, the slew rate is equal to the slope while the signal is rising or falling. If tr is the minimum rise time, then
Software package with GUI and drivers to control the MDT693B, as well as an SDK for third-party development.
External Control Using Serial Commands The three output channels of the MDT693B piezo controller can also be modulated remotely by sending serial commands through USB. The list of available commands is given in Chapter 7 of the manual. They include the ability to read and set voltages on a per-channel basis, to increment or decrement the control voltage at fixed step sizes, and to enable Master Scan mode.
Compatibility The MDT693B is also backwards compatible with the software and serial commands used to control the previous-generation MDT693A.
Please note that firmware version 1.09 or later is required if using version 2 of the software. The firmware can be updated by clicking the Software link to the left.
3-Axis Stages Thorlabs offers three different 3-Axis Stage variations: NanoMax flexure stages, MicroBlock compact flexure stages, and RollerBlock long-travel stages. Each stage features a 62.5 mm nominal deck height. Our NanoMax line of 3-axis stages offers built-in closed- and open-loop piezos as well as modular drive options that include stepper motors, differential drives, or additional piezos. The MicroBlock stages are available with differential micrometer drives or fine thread thumbscrews; these drives are not removable. Finally, our RollerBlock stage drivers can be switched out for any actuator that has a Ø3/8" (9.5 mm) mounting barrel.
4- and 5-Axis Stages Our 4- and 5-axis stages are ideal for the static positioning of waveguides or complex optical elements with respect to our 3-axis or 6-axis high-performance alignment stages. Thorlabs' 5-axis stages have nominal heights of 62.5 mm or 112.5 mm. The AMA554 Height Adapter can be used to raise the deck height of the 3-axis or 4-axis stages to 112.5 mm for compatibility with our 5-axis MicroBlock or 6-Axis NanoMax Stages.
6-Axis Stages Thorlabs' 6-Axis NanoMax Nanopositioners are ideal for complex, multi-axis positioning and have a nominal deck height of 112.5 mm. These stages offer a common point of rotation and a patented parallel flexure design that allows all actuators to be coupled directly to the base to minimize any unwanted motion in the system. Built-in closed- and open-loop piezo options are available. A selection of modular drive options allows any axis to be manual or motorized with the option for external piezos. Our units without included actuators are also available in right- or left-handed configurations. To increase the stage height of the 3-axis stages to 112.5 mm, we recommend our AMA554 Height Adapter, shown in the image to the right.
A complete selection and comparison of our multi-axis stages is available below.