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Micropositioners for microscopy applications and microbiology based on piezoelectric actuators

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In this paper we introduce micro-positioning systems dedicated to the manipulation of biological samples. Stick-Slip actuators offer considerable advantages for high-resolution positioning compared to traditional hydraulic or motorized manipulators. As previous setups and experiments have shown, a frequently used parallel cinematic structure for positioning purposes based on StickSlip actuators with three PZT elements is not always well suited because x and y motion can not be well decoupled. Therefore, new systems with a serial kinematic structure have been developed. The proposed devices provide the same capabilities as existing motorized stages and hydraulic manipulators, but with higher resolution and at a lower cost and a very compact size. A small xy stage, as well as a 3 dof micromanipulator, has been developed, which may be used in place of the traditional micromanipulation tools. The proposed solutions have been realized in prototypes, and experimental results are discussed.


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