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Newsletter November 2020 | Menu of Newsletters
"We were impressed by its superb performance, at least ten times better than the air tables we were using." More customer comments...

-A Perfect 10 could be an 11 with the CT-2 Ultra-Thin Platform
when used for Audio & Turntable Vibration Isolation

-3D Surface Analysis Vibration Isolation

-Featured Product: CT-2 Ultra-Thin Low-Height Tabletop Vibration Isolation Platform

-Optical Photopatterning & Photovoltaic Performance Vibration Isolation

-Portable Atom Interferometry Negative Stiffness Vibration Isolation

-Previous Features
-300 leading universities and private and government laboratories
in 51 countries use Minus K technology

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Minus K Technology CT-2 Bench Top Vibration Isolation Platform
The CT-2 was originally developed for scientific and research applications such as spacecraft design, nanotechnology, and medical research. The patented technology is called Negative-stiffness, where the isolating platform seems to float with no resistance.

You might have thought, maybe for only a few moments, that your audio system was sounding especially good. With that feeling, you would have rated the sound a top score of "10". Then those magical moments ended and your system returned to it's normal - but still good - performance level. Well, folks, the Minus K CT-2 Isolation Platform could raise your system score to an "11" and keep it there! Highly recommended for systems that are already high performance and where you want to coax the maximum performance from your audio investment....

Dr. David L. Platus is President and Founder and is the principal inventor of the technology. He earned a B.S. and a Ph.D. in Engineering from UCLA, and a diploma from the Oak Ridge School of (Nuclear) Reactor Technology. Prior to founding Minus K® Technology he worked in the nuclear, aerospace and defence industries conducting and directing analysis and design projects in structural-mechanical systems. He became an independent consultant in 1988. Dr. Platus holds over 20 patents related to shock and vibration isolation.

Ultra-Thin 2.7" High CT-2 Product Attributes:
  - Isolation performance is typically 10 to 100 times better than air systems
  - No air or electric power is required
  - Nothing to wear out
  - No maintenance

A complete description of the patented Negative-stiffness design can be found on the Technology page of the manufacturers Web site. The Minus K platform is completely silent and requires no pumps or power. The CT-2 model platforms are available for different weight ranges of payload, or supported weight. The 40CT-2 model, while not specifically listed on the Web page, was perfect for the Clearaudio Ovation turntable used for this review. The platform dimensions are 18" W x 20" D x 2.7" H, with a weight of about 30 pounds. Different models, for different payloads, range in price from $4,650 to about $5,250. In my system, the platform was installed 20" W x 18" D, which placed the adjustment crank on the 18" left side.

The horizontal frequency of ~1.5 Hz is achieved at or near the upper limits of the payload range. The vertical frequency is tunable to 0.5 Hz throughout the payload range. What this means is that any very low frequency vibrations that are not blocked or absorbed by the Minus K platform are several orders of magnitude below what your phono cartridge, or even the best subwoofers, can process.

Full article...

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Minus K CT-1 Ultra-Thin Vibration Isolator
Technology is winner of a Laser Focus World Innovator Award

CT-2 Ultra-Thin Low-Height Tabletop Vibration Isolation Platform

Minus K CT-1 Ultra-Thin Vibration Isolator

The Compact Tabletop (CT-2) uses Minus K's patented breakthrough technology allowing for the best performance on the market in just a 2.5 inch tall isolation platform. This unit is an upgrade from Minus K's CT-1 and offers better horizontal performance with additional payload ranges for heavier instruments.

This is the thinnest, most portable and most user-friendly isolator ever offered that is capable of delivering this performance.more...:
  • Horizontal frequencies are weight dependent.
  • Horizontal frequency of ~1.25 Hz is achieved at or near the upper limits of the payload range.
  • At the lower payload weights the horizontal frequency will increase.
  • Vertical frequency is tunable to 0.5 Hz throughout the payload range.

Pricing & sizes for CT-2

Press Release for the CT-2

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3D Surface Analysis Vibration Isolation
High-precision, nanometer-level 3D surface measurement systems can be negatively affected by low-frequency vibration—distorting imaging and producing inaccurate measurement readings.

Manufacturers need to control processes to produce a consistent, reliable product. Where precision surface engineering is required, surface measurement may be a key part of maintaining control of the process, by checking output to see that the process is not outside of specification.

3D non-contact surface analysis is widely used in the industry for the measurement of small displacements and surface irregularities. It delivers the ultimate in high accuracy and repeatable and traceable measurement. When built into microscopy equipment, employing 3D laser scanning or structured light, these systems report the surface condition of a product with more accuracy than any other methodproviding nanometer-level profile measurements of height, width, angle, radius, volume, and roughness. Such precision measurement systems allow users to improve product quality and reliability, and increase manufacturing consistency and production yields.

Low-Frequency Vibration
When measuring at such high levels of precision, any instrument can be negatively affected by low-frequency vibrations generated within a manufacturing facility. These can distort measurements and impact imaging and measurement data

One company that has great familiarity with the manufacturing environment and 3D surface measurements is Keyence Corporation--a leading supplier of sensors, measuring systems, laser markers, microscopes, and machine vision systems worldwide.

We have many customers with high-precision 3D measurement systems operating in high-vibration environments, performing microscopy evaluation at 30,000 times magnification, looking at nanometer-level surface features, said Evan Eltinge, Senior Sales Engineer Surface Analysis Team, with Keyence Corporation of America. At that level of detail, and in that environment, if measures are taken to reduce vibration it improves the quality of the data.

Without proper isolation surface measurements occurring at 3,000 to 5,000 times magnification, the vibration could contribute to image blurring and loss of image quality, continued Eltinge.

Vibration can be caused by a multitude of factors within a plant; every structure is transmitting noise. Within the building itself, production machinery, forklift trucks, the heating and ventilation system, fans, pumps, compressors, and elevators are just some of the mechanical devices and equipment that create low-frequency vibration. Depending on how far away the surface measurement instrumentation is from these vibration sources, and where inside the structure the instrumentation is locatedwhether on the production floor or in a loftwill determine how strongly the instrumentation will be influenced.

External to the building, the equipment can be influenced by vibrations from truck movement, road traffic, nearby construction, loud noise from aircraft, and even wind and other weather conditions that can cause movement of the structure.

Vibration Isolation Options for 3D Surface Analysis...

Full article...

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Optical Photopatterning & Photovoltaic Performance Vibration Isolation
"Working at these micron and sub-micron levels our necessity for vibration isolation
became critical for our optical patterning systems."

The Moulé Group, at the University of California/Davis, is interested in the solution processing and patterning of organic electronic materials for use in devices such as light-emitting diodes, photovoltaics, transistors, thermoelectric, and chemical sensors. The Group specifically focuses on using structural and dynamic measurement techniques to quantify the effects of solution processing and patterning on material morphology and device architecture.

Tucker Murrey, a doctoral candidate and published author with the Moulé Group, is actively involved with researching and designing a scalable optical patterning process for organic photovoltaic applications.

"Most working organic devices consist of several layers of material, each having a specific optical and/or electronic function," said Murrey. "One universal design constraint for complicated device architectures, like organic field-effect transistors (OFETs), organic photovoltaics (OPVs) and red-green-blue organic light-emitting diode (OLED) displays is that they require multiple components patterned laterally and vertically to operate. Currently, many of these components are comprised of non-flexible inorganic materials. In order to move towards flexible, all organic electronic devices, there is a need to develop high precision vertical and lateral patterning methods that are compatible with solution processing.

mmense efforts in the plastic electronics field have led to unprecedented progress and continuous improvements in organic photovoltaic (OPV) performance.

"Given that conventional photolithography technology techniques are incompatible with polymeric semiconductors, there is a critical need to develop scalable photopatterning methods capable of laterally patterning organic semiconducting compounds with sub-micromometer resolution," added Murrey. "This patterning process would enable the construction of a sophisticated OPV architecture designed to increase external quantum efficiency."

"A scalable process for controlling film topography with sub-micrometer resolution would represent a substantial development that enables the advancement of complex organic electronic device architectures," continued Murrey.

Photothermal Projection Lithography
The Moulé Group is working on a series of solution-based methods, one of which is called Photothermal Projection Lithography for Polymeric Semiconductors with Sub-diffraction Limited Resolution.

Polymeric semiconductors combine many of the electrical properties of inorganic semiconductors with the mechanical flexibility and chemical processability of organic materials, such as enabling them to be deposited from solution over large areas, greatly reducing production costs compared to conventional metallic semiconductors. Developments like this have motivated a rapid increase in demand for low-cost, high-throughput, and high-resolution fabrication techniques.

Organic semiconductors are non-metallic materials that exhibit semiconductor properties, whose building blocks are polymers made up of carbon and hydrogen atoms. These conductive polymers are, essentially, electrical insulators, but become conducting when charges are either injected from electrodes or by photoexcitation, or doping the intentional introduction of impurities into an intrinsic semiconductor for the purpose of modulating its electrical, optical, and structural properties.

"Over the past year I have been upscaling an optical patterning process that our group developed to make micro-scale electronic devices with these materials," expressed Murrey. "The overall pattern area was limited to less than one square millimeter. Now we are trying to upscale the overall patterning area to about one square centimeter."

Murrey designed a unique lab-scale photolithography system, modifying a Leica DM2700 optical microscope, swapping out its LED illumination source to permit a high-powered (Class 4) 405nm diode laser to be projected through it. Built into the system is a laser beam expander, collimating lens, and an optical speckle remover.

   Full article...

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Negative-Stiffness Vibration Isolation Aids Research Into
Portable Atom Interferometry at UC Berkeleys Müller Group

MiniG uses an atom interferometer to measure the effect of gravity on clouds of atoms...

Professor Holger Müller's Group at UC Berkeley is focused on advancing experimental quantum technology to push the sensitivity of experiments to new levels, and to perform precision measurements of fundamental constants. The groups work uses methods from atomic, molecular and optical physics. One project is the development of a transportable, multi-axis atom interferometer, named miniG.

MiniG was designed to research how quantum interference can be used to measure gravity outside of the laboratory. When cooled to just above absolute zero, the atoms form the focus of a portable quantum gravimeter.

Gravimeters, used to measure gravitational acceleration, have been successfully applied for metrology, geology and geophysics. MiniG uses an atom interferometer to measure the effect of gravity on clouds of atoms that are first trapped and cooled. Interferometry inherently depends on the wave nature of the object. Particles, including atoms, can behave like waves. Atom interferometers measure the difference in phase between atomic matter waves along different paths.

We use atoms that are laser-cooled to millionths of a degree above absolute zero, said Xuejian Wu, a post-doctoral scholar, involved in the development of miniG at the Müller Group. With pulses of light, we drive each atom into a quantum superposition of having been kicked with the momentum of photons, or not kicked. The atoms, in two places at one time, are in a superposition of recoiling backwards or staying still. By manipulating the state of the atoms using one of two types of such light pulses, we steer the matter waves' paths and recombine the matter waves at the end of the experiment.

Atom interferometry has become one of the most powerful technologies for precision measurements, and atomic gravimeters, based on atom interferometry, are extremely accurate and have long-term stability.

Current atom interferometers, however, are too complicated to operate in a miniature package or under field conditions. Berkeleys mini-G was engineered to resolve this issue.

In this project, we are developing a mobile atom interferometer using a single-diode laser system and a pyramidal magneto-optical trap, continued Wu. This allows the device to be smaller, simpler and more robust than conventional atom interferometers.

Vibration Isolation

Measurements of atomic precision require isolation from ambient vibrations coming from internal and external sources. As measurements are being done at a smaller and smaller level, those vibrations that are present will start to dominate, and the need for more effective isolation increases.

Although the Müller Groups research laboratory is situated in the basement of a building on the Berkeley campus, it is still influenced by vibrations from the buildings HVAC system.

For several years now we have been using Negative-Stiffness vibration isolation for our research projects, continued Wu.

Full article...

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Previous Features:

Vibration Criterion (VC) Curves-Lab Analysis

Heavy Payload Systems Vibration Isolation

Bad Vibrations: How to Keep the Effects of Environmental Bounce Out of Your Data

Vibration Isolation & Certifying Bowling Ball Surface Roughness

Press Release: Laser Focus World Innovator Award for
Ultra-Thin, Low-Height CT-1

How They Work>>Negative-Stiffness Vibration Isolators

Microscopy Vibration Isolation

FAQs>>Frequently Asked Questions About Vibration Isolation

Custom Vibration Isolation Systems

Audio Reproduction & Turntable Vibration Isolation

Vibration Isolator Steadies Optics for NASA Telescopes + Vacuum Isolation

Optical-Laser Vibration Isolation + video

Optical-Laser Vibration Isolation + video

Cryostat Vibration Isolation

Nanoindentation & Micro Hardness Testing
Vibration Isolation

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

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

Articles In The News

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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

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