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Newsletter November 2018
“The performance is exceptional...since switching to Minus K, field installation problems associated with vibration have been virtually eliminated...."
More customer comments...
1. Optical-Laser Vibration Isolation + video

2. MK52 Optical Table & Workstation

3. Cryostat Vibration Isolation
4. Nanoindentation & Hardness Testing Vibration Isolation
5. Vibration News & Articles
6. 300 leading universities and private and government laboratories
in 51 countries use Minus K technology

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Optical-Laser Systems Vibration Isolation:

Video of Laser Interferometer scanning piston pins on the
production line supprted by a Minus K BM-10

Profiler on Minus K BM-8 BM-8

Inverted Microscope on Minus K BM-8

Laser and optical systems, whether used in an academic laboratory or in an industrial environment, are very susceptible to vibrations from the environment. These instruments almost always need vibration isolation. Traditionally, large air tables have been the systems prefered for optical systems. This is no longer the case. Minus K isolators provide 10-100 times the performance of air tables, depending on the vibration frequency. They don't need air or electricity and are compact and easy to move around. Some users need the array of threaded holes that breadboards provide. In that case it is quite easy to put a breadboard on top of one of our antivibration isolators. It is also common to put a larger breadboard across two or more of our isolators.

Laser based interferometers are exquisitely sensitive devices that are capable of resolving nanometer scale motions/features. They often have very long mechanical paths which makes them even more sensitive to vibrations. The sophisticated modern ellipsometry techniques that allow this high performance rely on low noise to be able to detect fringe movement. Properly isolating an interferometer will allow it to provide the highest possible resolution.

Optical profilers have similar sensitivity to vibrations. Keeping external vibrations from the typically long optical path yields improved sensitivity and more reliable measurements. It is no longer necessary to do the most sensitive measurements at all hours of the night.

Optical component systems are often quite complex. The long optical paths can lead to angular magnification of vibrations. Typically used optical air tables can make the problems worse since they have a resonant frequency that often matches that of floor vibrations. Our 1/2 Hz isolators provide isolation in these environments when air tables simply cannot.

Full page with added images...

Related article regarding laser interferometry isolation...

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MK52 Optical Table & Workstation
Ergonomically Designed Ultra-Low Frequency Vibration Isolation


The MK52:Series Vibration Control Optical Table with more ergonomic comfort is designed specifically for ultra-low natural frequency applications. The system utilizes Minus K's patented negative stiffness vibration isolators to provide a compact, passive optical table with ultra-low natural frequencies, higher internal structural frequencies, and excellent vertical and horizontal isolation efficiencies.
  • Ultra-Low Natural Frequencies
  • Vibradamped Frame
  • Customizable Accessories
  • No Air Supply Needed - Easy to Use
  • Choice of Tabletops
  • Ergonomic Styling

Pricing & sizes for MK52

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Cryostat Vibration Isolation:

Cryostat on three Minus K CM-1s & pedestals

Arizona State Cryostat on three Minus K BM-1s

Cryostats often contain very sensitive instrumentation. They come in many different shapes, sizes and weights. Whether you are doing low temperature AFM, NMR or something else, we have several options available.

If your lab is on an upper floor of a building, air isolators may not be able to provide you enough isolation to get rid of building modes. In the worst case, the building might have a low resonant frequency close to that of the air tables. If this is the case, you can have amplification of the buildings vibrations. Obviously, this is not ideal. Our 1/2 Hz isolators will isolate at these low frequencies and will give your cryostat the best possible vibration isolation.

Our isolators can be mounted on a set of pedestals as shown in the image to optimize our interface. Of course, your cryostat may not have mounting brackets such as these shown. We can work with you to determine the best way to incorporate our isolators into your system. Minus K can design bracketry for you, or work with you and advise on the best way to build and incorporate them.

Full article...

Related article featuring Dewar cryostat...

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Nanoindentation & Micro Hardness Testing
Vibration Isolation

Examples of Platforms used with Nanoindenters:

MTS Nano Indenter
on a Minus K BA-1

Micro Materials Nano Indenter
on a Minus K BM-1

Agilent Nano Indenter
on a Minus K BM-8

Micro Hardness Testers and Nano Indenters can be quite sensitive to vibrations that increase the noise floor of critical measurements. The method of actually doing the measurements varies by manufacturer, but the fundamental mechanical path is similar. In all cases, the instruments need to be as still as possible to get the best performance. Some of the instruments are most sensitive to the vertical axes while others are more sensitive to the horizontal.

Minus K Technology isolators are unique in that they can deliver 0.5 Hz performance both vertically and horizontally. Most other isolators delivery their best performance vertically (which is typically the most important axis to isolate) and lower performance horizontally. While this is ok for some applications, there are those, such as some micro hardness testers that are most sensitive horizontally. For those instruments, our isolators offer by far the best isolation available.

If you have no choice but to place on of these instruments on the upper floor of a building, our isolators can make it possible to get the best performance possible. We have provided isolation solutions for many happy customers facing this very problem.

Related page...


Announcing the 2019 Minus K Technology Educational Giveaway
for U.S. Colleges and Universities

Minus K Technology, Inc. is giving away $20,000* worth of patented vibration isolators to colleges within the United States.

Your college could receive one of our superior performing negative-stiffness low-frequency vibration isolators, which use no air or electricity and are currently being used for biology, neuroscience, chemistry, crystal growing, physics, audio reproduction and many other fields.

If your school (or a favorite school you may want to notify), has an Atomic Force Microscope (AFM), Electron Microscope, Interferometer, Laser Optical System, Micro Hardness Tester, or any other special equipment that would be assisted by our vibration isolation, visit this page for more details. If your school is one of the top applicants, we'll send you one of these free vibration isolators to assist you with your research.

Past Winners: 20182017201620152014

*See more details, terms and conditions...

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Negative-Stiffness Vibration Isolation at the South Pole

Developed and patented by Minus K Technology, Negative-Stiffness isolators provide a unique capability, employing a completely mechanical concept in low-frequency vibration isolation, with no air or electricity required.

Full article & images...

NEED FOR VIBRATION ISOLATION: The Romalis Group's atomic spin co-magnetometer, in use both at Princeton University in New Jersey and at its South Pole lab, is among the most sensitive devices for testing Lorentz symmetry. Consequently, precision vibration isolation is required to isolate vibrations from its sensitive components not only for the co-magnetometer, but for the systems associated lasers and optical alignments.

Vibrations in the range of few hertz (Hz) to a few 10s of Hz will influence the testing. These internal and external influences primarily cause lower frequency vibrations which are transmitted through the structure, creating strong disturbances in sensitive equipment.

Vibration within this range can be caused by a multitude of factors. Every structure is transmitting noise. Within the building itself, the heating and ventilation system, fans, pumps and elevators are just some of the mechanical devices that create vibration. Depending on how far away the equipment is from these vibration sources, and where in the structure the equipment is located, whether on the third floor or in the basement, for example, will determine how strongly the instrumentation will be influenced.

External to the building, the testing can be influenced by vibrations from vehicle movement, nearby construction, noise from aircraft, and even wind and other weather conditions can cause movement of the structure.

SOUTH POLE FLEXIBILITY: Negative-Stiffness isolators do not require electricity or compressed air. There are no motors, pumps or chambers, and no maintenance because there is nothing to wear out. They operate purely in a passive mechanical mode.

If equipment can be isolated from vibrations without having to deal with compressed air or electricity, then it makes for a system that is simpler to transport, and easier to set-up and maintain. Such was the case with the Romalis Groups Lorentz symmetry testing at the Amundsen-Scott Station, South Pole.

The Negative-Stiffness isolator provided the flexibility to be easily transported with our alkali metal-noble gas co-magnetometer from our Princeton lab in New Jersey to the South Pole, added Romalis. We did not have to make adjustments for electrical power and pumps to support the vibration isolation.

Full article & images...      Applications...      Products...      

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Ultra-Low Frequency Vibration Isolation
Stabilizes Scanning Tunneling Microscopy

The tunable microwave-frequency alternating current scanning tunneling microscope (ACSTM) can record local spectra and local chemical information on insulator surfaces, much like the conventional STM can do for metals and semiconductors. Spectroscopy in the microwave frequency range enables previously unattainable measurements on conducting substrates, such as the rotational spectroscopy of a single adsorbed molecule.

The technology was developed in the early 1990s by Professor Paul Weiss, the nano-pioneering director of the Weiss Group, a nanotechnology research unit of UCLAs California NanoSystems Institute. The ACSTMs single-molecule measurement techniques have illuminated unprecedented details of chemical behavior, including observations of the motion of a single molecule on a surface, and even the vibration of a single bond within a molecule. Such measurements are critical to understanding entities ranging from single atoms to the most complex protein assemblies.

We use molecular design, tailored syntheses, intermolecular interactions and selective chemistry to direct molecules into desired positions to create nanostructures, to connect functional molecules to the outside world, and to serve as test structures for measuring single or bundled molecules, says David McMillan, lead technician at the Weiss Group. The ACSTM enables interactions within and between molecules to be designed, directed, measured, understood, and exploited.

The group examines how these interactions influence chemistry, dynamics, structure, electronic function, and other properties. Such interactions can be used to form precise molecular assemblies nanostructures and patterns, and to control and stabilize function. By understanding interactions, function and dynamics at the smallest possible scales, the group hopes to improve synthetic systems at all scales.

Full article...

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Vibration News & Articles

Neuronal Research into Animal Learning, Memory Neuronal Research, Vibration Isolation Problem & Solution

Nano-Research into Superionic Solid Electrolytes for Next-Generation Lithium Batteries
Battery Power Magazine Online, July 2017 

Negative-Stiffness Vibration Isolation For The Sharpest Micro-World Images
Apogee Photo Magazine, August 2017 

Negative-Stiffness Vibration Isolation Provides Improved Performance For Cleanroom Applications
Commercial Micro Manufacturing International , August 2016 
Minus K offers several standard and custom vibration isolation products
- All Media, June 2016
Ultra-Low Frequency Vibration Isolation Stabilizes Scanning Tunneling Microscopy
- R&D Magazine, June 2016

      More Articles & News...


Previous Features:

Ultra-Low Frequency Vibration Isolation Stabilizes Scanning Tunneling Microscopy

Neuronal Research into Animal Learning, Memory Neuronal Research,
Vibration Isolation Problem & Solution

Sunken Treasure Surrounding The Coldest Cubic Meter In The Universe
Supported by Minus K Vibration Isolators

Lithium Batteries: Superionic Solid Electrolytes for Next-Generation

Spacecraft Vibration Isolation On the Ground

Behavior of a Single Molecule-UCLA's California NanoSystems Institute

Cleanroom Precision Vibration Isolation

Negative-stiffness vibration isolation is utilized to provide ultra-stability for multi-disciplined, nano-level research at UCLA's California NanoSystems Institute.

NASA/JWST Update: Custom James Webb Space Telescope Vibration Isolators Working Well

Audiophile Interests: The Doehmann Helix 1 Turntable

2017 Winners | Minus K Technology Educational Giveaway to U.S. Colleges and Universities

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Vibration Isolation News | What's Here for You:
With users at more than 300 leading universities and private and government laboratories in 51 countries, Vibration Isolation News is designed to keep our customers and friends up to date on the latest products and applications designed to facilitate better measurements and improved nanomanufacturing. We are an OEM supplier to leading manufacturers of scanning probe microscopes, micro-hardness testers and other sensitive instruments.

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The MK52

NASA Telescope Project

How Our Isolators Work

Spacecraft Vibration Isolation On the Ground

Minus K Technology Inc., Vibration Isolation Systems
460 Hindry Ave., Unit C | Inglewood, CA 90301 | Tel: 310-348-9656 | Contact Us | www.MinusK.com