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Motorized High-Load Vertical Translation Stage
50 mm (1.97") Vertical Translation Stage with Integrated Controller
Power Supply, USB, and RS232 Ports
Manual Control Keypad
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The Fully Extended MLJ150(/M) Mounted onto a Nexus Optical Table by 1/4"-20 (M6) Cap Screws
The MLJ150(/M) Motorized Vertical Translation Stage offers up to 50 mm of smooth, stepper motor driven linear height adjustment. Its integrated electronic controller allows for local control or CPU control via our software. This stage provides a rugged, height-adjustable platform ideal for mounting optomechanical sub-assemblies requiring height adjustment. It incorporates a large 5.83" x 5.16" mounting platform that is capable of moving loads up to 20 kg at up to 3 mm/s. Guards are fitted to completely eliminate finger traps and other obstructions. These features make it ideal to use as a heavy-duty lab jack.
The integrated electronic contoller facilitates local control via the keypad buttons and velocity potentiometer, as seen in the drawing to the right, as well as above. Alternatively, the MLJ150(/M) can be controlled remotely via USB or RS232 connections (see the Pin Diagram tab for connector information) by utilizing our Kinesis® or APT™ software suites. Parameter settings can be adjusted on the PC and stored in non-volatile memory within the unit itself. When the unit is next powered up, these settings are applied automatically. This feature is particularly useful when operating the unit manually in the absence of a PC link. Furthermore, the magnetic limit switches can be configured using flexible logic settings.
The stage offers excellent rigidity and platform parallelism. The top plate has twenty-five 1/4"-20 (M6) tapped holes with 0.31" (8.0 mm) depth, while the bottom plate has clearance slots that can be used to mount the stage to an optical breadboard, as shown to the right. The unit is supplied with a location-specific power supply with an input of 100 to 240 VAC. Please connect the power supply unit (PSU) to the stage before connecting the PSU to a power outlet. A USB cable for connection to a PC is also included.
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The 5.83" x 5.16" (148 mm x 131 mm) top platform of the MLJ150(/M) has twenty-five 1/4"-20 (M6) mounting taps. The control keypad for manual control can be seen here.
USB Type B
USB Type B to Type A Cable Included
Thorlabs offers two platforms to drive our wide range of motion controllers: our Kinesis® software package or the legacy APT™ (Advanced Positioning Technology) software package. Either package can be used to control devices in the Kinesis family, which covers a wide range of motion controllers ranging from small, low-powered, single-channel drivers (such as the K-Cubes™ and T-Cubes™) to high-power, multi-channel, modular 19" rack nanopositioning systems (the APT Rack System).
The Kinesis Software features .NET controls which can be used by 3rd party developers working in the latest C#, Visual Basic, LabVIEW™, or any .NET compatible languages to create custom applications. Low-level DLL libraries are included for applications not expected to use the .NET framework. A Central Sequence Manager supports integration and synchronization of all Thorlabs motion control hardware.
Kinesis GUI Screen
APT GUI Screen
Our legacy APT System Software platform offers ActiveX-based controls which can be used by 3rd party developers working on C#, Visual Basic, LabVIEW™, or any Active-X compatible languages to create custom applications and includes a simulator mode to assist in developing custom applications without requiring hardware.
By providing these common software platforms, Thorlabs has ensured that users can easily mix and match any of the Kinesis and APT controllers in a single application, while only having to learn a single set of software tools. In this way, it is perfectly feasible to combine any of the controllers from single-axis to multi-axis systems and control all from a single, PC-based unified software interface.
The software packages allow two methods of usage: graphical user interface (GUI) utilities for direct interaction with and control of the controllers 'out of the box', and a set of programming interfaces that allow custom-integrated positioning and alignment solutions to be easily programmed in the development language of choice.
A range of video tutorials is available to help explain our APT system software. These tutorials provide an overview of the software and the APT Config utility. Additionally, a tutorial video is available to explain how to select simulator mode within the software, which allows the user to experiment with the software without a controller connected. Please select the APT Tutorials tab above to view these videos.
Thorlabs' Kinesis® software features new .NET controls which can be used by third-party developers working in the latest C#, Visual Basic, LabVIEW™, or any .NET compatible languages to create custom applications.
For a collection of example projects that can be compiled and run to demonstrate the different ways in which developers can build on the Kinesis motion control libraries, click on the links below. Please note that a separate integrated development environment (IDE) (e.g., Microsoft Visual Studio) will be required to execute the Quick Start examples. The C# example projects can be executed using the included .NET controls in the Kinesis software package (see the Kinesis Software tab for details).
These videos illustrate some of the basics of using the APT System Software from both a non-programming and a programming point of view. There are videos that illustrate usage of the supplied APT utilities that allow immediate control of the APT controllers out of the box. There are also a number of videos that explain the basics of programming custom software applications using Visual Basic, LabView and Visual C++. Watch the videos now to see what we mean.
To further assist programmers, a guide to programming the APT software in LabView is also available.
Motorized Linear Translation Stages
Thorlabs' motorized linear translation stages are offered in a range of maximum travel distances, from a stage with 20 µm of piezo translation to our 600 mm direct drive stage. Many of these stages can be assembled in multi-axis configurations, providing XY or XYZ translation. For fiber coupling applications, please see our multi-axis stages, which offer finer adjustment than our standard motorized translation stages. In addition to motorized linear translation stages, we offer motorized rotation stages, pitch and yaw platforms, and goniometers. We also offer manual translation stages.
These stages incorporate piezoelectric elements in a variety of drive mechanisms. Our Nanoflex™ translation stages use standard piezo chips along with manual actuators. Our LPS710E z-axis stage features a mechanically amplified piezo design and includes a matched controller. The PD1 stage incorporates a piezo inertia drive that uses "stick-slip" friction properties to obtain an extended travel range. The Elliptec™ stages use resonant piezo motors to push and pull the moving platform through resonant elliptical motion.
Stepper Motor Stages
These translation stages feature removable or integrated stepper motors and long travel ranges up to 300 mm. The MLJ150 stage also offers high load capacity vertical translation. The other stages can be assembled into multi-axis configurations.
DC Servo Motor Stages
Thorlabs offers linear translation stages with removable or integrated DC servo motors. These stages feature low profiles and can be assembled in multi-axis configurations.
Direct Drive Stages
These low-profile stages feature integrated brushless DC servo motors for high speed translation with zero backlash. When no power is applied, the platforms of these stages have very little inertia and are virtually free running. Hence these stages may not be suitable for applications where the stage's platform needs to remain in a set position when the power is off. We do not recommend mounting these stages vertically.