STTR Phase I: Multi-sine six-degree of freedom interferometry for precision stage metrology

Period of Performance: 01/01/2014 - 12/31/2014

$225K

Phase 1 STTR

Recipient Firm

Insitutec, Inc.
45 Odell School Road, Suite A
Concord, NC 28027
Principal Investigator, Firm POC

Research Institution

University of Rochester
518 Hylan, River Campusbox 27014
Rochester, NY 14627

Abstract

This Small Business Technology Transfer Phase I project will demonstrate a novel laser interferometer to provide fast and portable calibrations for ultra-precise motion control devices. This system will provide customers with a portable system that will perform nanometer-level calibrations in a fraction of the time as compared to competitive products. A system that can provide this unique capability to measure a functional point will lower measurement uncertainty and reduce calibration time. The chip manufacturing market alone was $311 billion in 2011 with an estimated 112 plants worldwide in packaging and chip production. Based on dialogue with a leading chip manufacturer, the need for periodic calibration using a fast portable tool has been confirmed for each plant in this industry. Additionally, the portable interferometer has market opportunity beyond chip manufacturing, ranging from large-scale measuring machines to precision robotics. The technology would be a game-changer in many industries to facilitate fast calibration times and minimize loss of manufacturing production time. Many high precision manufacturing processes require routine calibrations to verify that process equipment meets specific inspection and manufacturing specifications. The current state-of-the-art portable interferometers on the market require multiple calibration setups for each rotation and translation axis to be measured. Higher-end interferometer products can measure multiple degrees of freedom at the same time, but are extremely expensive, not portable, and have large measurement targets leading to altered stage dynamics during calibration. This work addresses a novel laser calibration system that can simultaneously measure all six degrees of freedom (3 linear and 3 rotational) from a single laser beam transmitted from a small portable module. The goal is to achieve a resolution of better than 100 nanoradians in all three rotational axes and 1 nanometer in the linear axes.