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Thorlabs Releases a New Line of High Precision Manual Translation Stages

Newton, NJ – September 12, 2016 – Thorlabs has announced the release of a new line of XR-Series cross roller bearing, aluminum-bodied translation stages. The initial release includes both rear- and side-actuated 1" travel stages and all components needed to have left- or right-handed X, XY, XZ, YZ, and XYZ configurations. A dovetail feature is incorporated into the design for stacking; it could also be used to provide custom mounting options. When stacking two stages, coarse positional alignment in the axis perpendicular to stage travel is achieved by sliding the dovetail along the mating dovetail prior to lockdown.

“Our ground-up design effort considered various aluminum alloys, bearing mechanisms, and features in an effort to produce a line of stages with a unique combination of performance features and specifications,” commented Tyler Morgus, Mechanics Business Unit Leader. Specifically, the resulting products provide:
  • Less than 150 µrad of Angular Deviation in Pitch and Yaw
  • Dovetail Stacking System that Eliminates Cumbersome Dowel Pins
  • Side or End Actuation with Easy Conversion Between the Two Options
  • Left- or Right-Handed Multi-Axis Configurations
  • Deep and Blind 1/4"-20 (M6) Tapped Holes on the Moving World
  • Ultra Smooth Cross Roller Bearings
A 2" travel option, which will be compatible with the dovetail stacking feature on the 1" stage, will be available late 2016. As a result of the direct interchangeability between the 1" and 2" variants, it will be possible to build multi-axis solutions that combine both translation range options without the purchase of additional adapters.

In addition to the standard versions available on the web, these stages can be customized to accommodate custom footprints, deck heights, and hole patterns. To see our full line of XR-Series solutions, please visit

About Thorlabs: Thorlabs, a vertically integrated photonics products manufacturer, was founded in 1989 to serve the laser and electro-optics research market. As that market has spawned a multitude of technical innovations, Thorlabs has extended its core competencies in an effort to play an ever increasing role serving the Photonics Industry at the research end, as well as the industrial, life science, medical, and defense segments. The organization’s highly integrated and diverse manufacturing assets include semiconductor fabrication of laser diodes, optical amplifiers, lithium niobate modulators, quantum cacscade/interband cascade lasers, and VCSEL lasers; fiber towers for drawing both silica and fluoride glass optical fibers; MBE/MOCVD epitaxial wafer growth reactors; extensive glass and metal fabrication facilities; advanced thin film deposition capabilities; and optomechanical and optoelectronic shops.