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Ultra-precision positioning assembly

United States Patent

6,408,526
June 25, 2002
View the Complete Patent at the US Patent & Trademark Office
Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory - Visit the Industrial Partnerships Office Website
An apparatus and method is disclosed for ultra-precision positioning. A slide base provides a foundational support. A slide plate moves with respect to the slide base along a first geometric axis. Either a ball-screw or a piezoelectric actuator working separate or in conjunction displaces the slide plate with respect to the slide base along the first geometric axis. A linking device directs a primary force vector into a center-line of the ball-screw. The linking device consists of a first link which directs a first portion of the primary force vector to an apex point, located along the center-line of the ball-screw, and a second link for directing a second portion of the primary force vector to the apex point. A set of rails, oriented substantially parallel to the center-line of the ball-screw, direct movement of the slide plate with respect to the slide base along the first geometric axis and are positioned such that the apex point falls within a geometric plane formed by the rails. The slide base, the slide plate, the ball-screw, and the linking device together form a slide assembly. Multiple slide assemblies can be distributed about a platform. In such a configuration, the platform may be raised and lowered, or tipped and tilted by jointly or independently displacing the slide plates.
Montesanti; Richard C. (San Francisco, CA), Locke; Stanley F. (Livermore, CA), Thompson; Samuel L. (Pleasanton, CA)
The Regents of the University of California (Oakland, CA)
09/ 289,761
April 12, 1999
The United States Government has rights in this invention pursuant to Contract No. W-7405-ENG-48 between the United States Department of Energy and the University of California for the operation of Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory.