QFOCUS QF1 Single-Axis, Microscope Objective, Piezo Nanopositioning Stage


Design Features

  • 100 μm closed-loop and 120 μm open-loop travels (custom travels available)
  • High-stiffness and dynamics resulting in outstanding step-and-settle and scanning performance
  • High-precision, frictionless flexure guidance
  • Long device lifetime
  • Superior positioning resolution and linearity with direct-metrology capacitive sensor option
  • Variety of threaded adapters for quick and easy attachment to the microscope and objective
  • Clear aperture to 29 mm

Aerotech’s QFOCUS® QF1 piezo nanopositioning stage offers microscope objective and optics positioning with nanometer-level precision at high speeds. With an ultra-precision capacitive sensor feedback option and high structural stiffness, the QF1 is perfect for demanding scanning applications, microscopy, or any optical application requiring high precision and throughput.

Exacting Precision

The QFOCUS QF1 piezo stage is guided by precision flexures that are optimized using finite element analysis to ensure high stiffness and long device life. The resulting design offers outstanding stiffness and resonant frequency, enabling high process throughput and fast closed-loop response. Furthermore, the QF1 has been designed to provide excellent geometric performance (straightness and angular errors) for critical microscopy and optics positioning applications.

High Resolution and Positioning Accuracy

The QF1 has the option of closed-loop feedback (-C) using a unique capacitive sensor design that allows for sub-nanometer resolution and high linearity. The capacitive sensors measure the output of the positioning carriage directly, enabling superior accuracy and repeatability.

Ultra-Precision Control

When coupled with Aerotech’s Q-series controllers and drives, the QF1 demonstrates sub-nanometer positioning resolution and in-position stability (jitter), and high positioning bandwidth. Software options such as Aerotech’s Dynamic Controls Toolbox and Motion Designer packages provide a host of advanced yet easy-to-use tools such as Learning Control, Harmonic Cancellation, and Command Shaping, providing improved tracking errors and faster step-and-settle times. OEM drive options are also available.

Learn more about our controls and software HERE.

Variety of Objective Thread Adapters

The QFOCUS QF1 is available with threaded adapters to fit most microscopes and objectives. The microscope turret mounting allows for easy and fast positioning of the QF1 at the desired orientation. The QF1 is available with a clear aperture of up to 29 mm.

Custom stage designs, travels, and threaded adapters are available.



Mechanical Specifications

Closed-Loop Travel 100 μm
Open-Loop Travel, -30 to +150 V(1) 120 μm
Resolution(2) Closed-Loop 0.30 nm
Open-Loop 0.15 nm
Linearity(3,4) 0.01%
Bidirectional Repeatability(5) 3 nm
Pitch/Yaw 10 μrad (2.1 arc sec)
Straightness/Flatness 25 nm
Stiffness (in direction of motion)(6) 1.25 N/μm
Unloaded Resonant Frequency(6) 500 Hz
Resonant Frequency (150 g load)(6) 240 Hz
Push/Pull Capacity (in direction of motion)(7) 10 N
Max Payload(8) 1 kg
Stage Mass 0.24 kg
Material Anodized Aluminum(9)
MTBF (Mean Time Between Failure) 30,000 Hours
  1. Value ±10%.
  2. See Piezo Engineering reference section 4.2 for description of resolution.
  3. Certified with each stage (closed-loop feedback models only).
  4. See Piezo Engineering reference section 4.1 for description of linearity and accuracy specifications.
  5. Specified as a 1 sigma (standard deviation) value (closed-loop feedback models only). See Piezo Engineering reference section 4.3 for description of bidirectional repeatability.
  6. Values ±20%.
  7. See Piezo Engineering reference section 4.6 for description of piezo stage load ratings.
  8. On-axis loading listed.
  9. External elements are anodized aluminum. Some stainless steel components are used in the internal construction. Other materials available upon request.

Electrical Specifications

Drive System Piezo Multi-Layer Stack Actuator
Feedback Closed Loop: Capacitive Sensor (-C)
Open Loop: None (-)
Maximum Voltage -30 V to +150 V
Piezo Stack Capacitance(1) 1.6 µF
  1. Value ±20%

Recommended Controller

    Ensemble Ensemble QLAB
    Ensemble QDe
    Ensemble QLe
    Ensemble QL
    A3200 Ndrive QLe
    Ndrive QL
    1. Unless noted, the QLAB, QDe, or QLe drives are required to achieve the listed specifications. Contact Aerotech for specifications when used with the QL drives.


    Ordering Information

    QFOCUS™ QF1 Piezo Nanopositioning Stage

    QF1 QFOCUS QF1 open-loop nanopositioner; 120 μm open-loop travel
    QF1-C QFOCUS QF1 closed-loop nanopositioner with capacitive sensor feedback; 100 μm closed-loop travel (120 μm open-loop travel)

    Microscope Adapter (optional)

    -MA1 W0.8 x 1/36" microscope adapter
    -MA2 M19 x 0.75 microscope adapter
    -MA3 M25 x 0.75 microscope adapter
    -MA4 M26 x 0.75 microscope adapter
    -MA5 M27 x 0.75 microscope adapter
    -MA6 M28 x 0.75 microscope adapter
    -MA7 M32 x 0.75 microscope adapter
    -MA8 M26 x 1/36" microscope adapter

    Objective Adapter (optional)

    -OA1 W0.8 x 1/36" objective adapter
    -OA2 M19 x 0.75 objective adapter
    -OA3 M25 x 0.75 objective adapter
    -OA4 M26 x 0.75 objective adapter
    -OA5 M27 x 0.75 objective adapter
    -OA6 M28 x 0.75 objective adapter
    -OA7 M32 x 0.75 objective adapter
    -OA8 M26 x 1/36" objective adapter

    Note: Parfocal spacer rings and other custom thread sizes available