Piezo motor drives – a unique alternative

Ultrasonic piezo motors from PI are locked when powered down and so are ideal for low duty cycle move to align applications. Fabricated into an OEM linear motor such as the U-624 shown here or into a mechanical stage incorporating position feedback the technology, widely used in photonic applications, is available off the shelf in a variety of forms. Competing in price with more traditional motor technologies, piezo motor designs offer you a unique alternative that can reduce power consumption, footprint and complexity in a motion or alignment system.

A range of different piezo motor technologies are manufactured by PI, including ultrasonic, stick slip and stepping drives. The piezo material used in each design is produced by the PI group ensuring a quality and reliability of supply which is critical for the many industrial users of the technology. Each technology involves controlled contact between two ceramic surfaces. The wear characteristics of the surface interaction have been assessed and optimised over a number of years of development ensuring that the lifetime for a given duty cycle can be accurately predicted. Where additional testing is required this is done as part of a prototype qualification process. The drives are available as OEM components, as an open loop linear or rotary positioner or as a closed loop system including encoder feedback, controller and software. Although a range of standard products are available most industrial applications require a level of customisation. Custom designs are facilitated by the 100 strong engineering team of the company at PI's headquarters in Karlsruhe, Germany. For more information on the U-624 and other piezo motor technologies please take a look at the new PI website www.physikinstrumente.com