New Scale Technologies introduces "mechatronics on a fingertip" with high resolution, low power use

M3 (Micro-Mechatronic Module) Design Platform enables rapid development of custom closed-loop actuators with on-board PID control, in tiny, OEM-specific housings

M3 (Micro-Mechatronic Module) Design Platform enables rapid development of custom closed-loop actuators with on-board PID control in tiny packages.
M3 (Micro-Mechatronic Module) Design Platform enables rapid development of custom closed-loop actuators with on-board PID control in tiny packages.

Victor, NY – March 18, 2010 – New Scale Technologies today announced its M3 (Micro-Mechatronic Module) Design Platform for rapid development of custom closed-loop micro actuator modules. Building on the company’s miniature SQUIGGLE motor and TRACKER position sensor technology, this design platform yields a complete closed-loop actuator on a printed circuit board of 12 x 30 mm or less. Modules have low power consumption and 3.3V input voltage for battery-powered operation. No external control board is necessary; simple serial commands drive an on-board PID controller using a standard I2C, SPI or USART interface.

Modules based on the M3 Design Platform are ideal for high resolution positioning in miniature optical instrumentation, lasers and photonics systems, aerospace controls and biomedical systems.

The basic M3 Design Platform consists of:

- An SQL-RV-1.8 reduced voltage SQUIGGLE RV micro motor

- An NSD-2101 motor driver

- A TRACKER NSE-5310 position sensor (encoder)

- An on-board microprocessor for PID control

These components, mounted on a miniature printed circuit board, comprise the core of the M3 Design Platform. On this foundation, New Scale works with each OEM customer to adapt one of several base mechanical configurations to suit the specific application. The company is currently developing custom linear drive systems and custom autofocus modules built on the M3 Design Platform.

While performance is tuned to customer’s requirements, typical specifications for a linear drive system based on the M3 Design Platform include 0.5 micron position resolution, up to 50 grams force load, 10 mm/sec speed, and up to 20 mm travel range. New Scale’s design team works with each OEM to navigate the trade-offs among factors such as speed, force, and power use.

"With the M3 Design Platform, we make miniature motion control integration extremely simple for our OEM customers," said Ralph Weber, Product Manager at New Scale. "Electrical integration is as easy as sending serial commands to the module. We build a mechanical interface to move whatever the customer needs moved: a lens within the module, or a lever external to the module, or any other load. Each custom module is a drop-in drive system for a customer’s miniature product application. These micro-mechatronic modules are smaller, more powerful, more precise and now even easier to integrate than traditional electromagnetic motor systems."

The SQUIGGLE RV motor and TRACKER sensor provide extremely precise, closed-loop positioning. The closed-loop system can be tuned with PID control parameters stored in the microprocessor to provide response tailored to the integrated system requirements.

About New Scale Technologies

New Scale Technologies (www.newscaletech.com) creates disruptively small motion systems based on our patented piezoelectric SQUIGGLE® motor, the world’s smallest linear motor, and TRACKER™ position sensor. The ultrasonic SQUIGGLE motor is smaller, more precise, less expensive, more robust and more power-efficient than other micro motors. The TRACKER position sensor integrates a magnetic sensor with on-chip digital encoder, for smaller size and higher resolution than miniature optical encoders. We create complete motion systems integrating motor and sensor technology with supporting electronics (ASICs) developed with our partner austriamicrosystems.

New Scale’s micro motors, encoders and micro-actuator modules enable design engineers to create smaller products including mobile phone cameras, miniature optics and imaging systems, minimally invasive medical devices, electronic locks and miniature aerospace/defense & security systems.

SQUIGGLE is a registered trademark and TRACKER and New Scale Pathway are trademarks of New Scale Technologies, Inc