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Research and Development

From 1969 until the early 1990's, TMC self-leveling air vibration isolation systems were second to none in overall vibration isolation performance. More recently, the relentless drive in industry toward ever-higher precision has required us to undertake a large, full-time R&D effort in order to develop more advanced products to meet our customers’ needs. Currently, TMC employs several scientists and engineers whose sole responsibility is to use advanced control theory to develop the most sophisticated vibration isolation systems commercially available. In the mid-1990’s, this research effort began to bear fruit. First, we introduced PEPS®, the precision electronic positioning system which uses non-contacting height sensors to control the float height of an isolator to within a few microns. CSP® allows us to achieve an extremely low natural frequency horizontally (0.3 Hz) passively, at a low-cost. MaxDamp® is another low-cost solution to the problem of settling time of an isolated surface in response to motorized stage-induced motion. AccuDock™ quickly achieves repeatable docking of an isolated surface for quick loading and unloading of wafers or other objects with a robot. 

TMC's 1998 purchase of the STACIS® and Electro-Damp® product lines from Barry Controls, a division of Applied Power Corporation, introduced new research and development opportunities. STACIS is simply the most advanced commercial vibration isolation system in the world with piezoelectric actuators canceling motion from 0.6 Hz to 250 Hz in six degrees of freedom. 

In recent years, TMC has not only continued to improve our existing advanced product line, but has introduced a range of new, breakthrough products incorporating our patented STACIS technology. Among our latest innovations are STACIS® iX LaserTable-Base™, hybrid piezoelectric/air vibration cancellation for optical tables; STACIS® iX Stage-Base™, a cost-effective, frame-mountable, piezoelectric vibration cancellation system designed to be integrated into advanced semiconductor tools which incorporate high-precision motorized stages; STACIS® iX SEM-Base®, active hard-mount vibration cancellation for scanning electron microscopes; TableTop PZT™, sub-Hz active hard-mount vibration cancellation for small precision instruments; and Mag-NetX®, magnetic field cancellation systems.