SMARPOD motion systems offer six degrees of freedom similar to classical hexapod systems while guaranteeing highest resolution and repeatability. Compared to serial kinematic systems, parallel kinematic SMARPODs exhibit a higher stiffness. A user-friendly software package allows easy integration into your own control environment assuring a very short setup time.
In addition to our customer-specific solutions, the following standard SMARPOD models are available. Please scroll down to get further information about the working principle and key features of our SMARPOD models.
The SMARPOD is a parallel kinematics robotic system, where the top plate is actuated by the simultaneous movement of multiple linear SMARSLIDE stages. Three towers, each combing two actuated stages (radial and tangential) and a passive guideway, are connected to the top plate by joints. The parallel arrangement of the SMARPOD’s positioners contributes to the overall stiffness of the system and allows the top plate to be translated and rotated in six degrees of freedom.
SMARPODs, like all other SmarAct products, are highly customizable. Whether your application requires only a modified base or top plate or a completely different configuration, feel free to contact us to discuss your requirements and the most appropriate solution. Let us help you bring your ideas to life.
The SMARPOD motion systems can be mounted in horizontal or up-side down orientation. Please mention the planned mounting orientation in your application when contacting us. We will help to find or adjust the SMARPOD motion system to realize the desired mounting configuration.
Control in Cartesian Coordinates
Calculation of the kinematics model and device control is encapsulated in a software package. Programming interfaces and graphical user interfaces allow to move the SMARPOD in Cartesian coordinates (X, Y, Z, Rx, Ry, Rz).
User-Definable Pivot Point and Axis Alignment
One great advantage of the SMARPOD is the possibility to freely set the rotations’ pivot point. By defining the center of rotation, the system can precisely rotate around any addressable point in space. This is very helpful for many applications, e.g., the alignment of optical components. In addition, the base coordinate system can be shifted and rotated allows the SMARPOD axes to be aligned in customer or application specific environments.
All SMARPODs with circular base plates include an aperture in the base and top plate. These apertures allow to gain access from beneath the positioning system to electrically connect the sample or to get optical access to mounted components.
For applications that require vacuum conditions most of our SMARPODs are available in high (1E-6 mbar) and ultra-high vacuum (1E-11 mbar) compatible versions. Furthermore, they can also be made from fully non-magnetic materials to be used in applications utilizing charged particle beams or high magnetic fields.
High Resolution and Repeatability
A backlash-free mechanical design makes it possible to achieve a movement performance of the positioning system which is in the same order of magnitude as for our single positioners.
Controller and Software
The full potential of SMARPOD systems can be reached in combination with SmarAct control systems such as the MCS2 or the ECM. In addition, the SmarAct hand controller allows a direct tactile input control for applications that need fast and versatile manual control of a motion system.
An easy to use and comprehensive software package will be delivered with each system. This includes control software with a graphical user interface as well as a software development kit allowing to implement the SMARPOD motion system in user-defined control applications in C/C++, Python or LabVIEW. The C++ and Python software development kits are available for Windows and Linux.