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22 June 2000 Smart flexible microrobots for scanning electron microscope (SEM) applications
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In the scanning electron microscope (SEM), specially designed microrobots can act as a flexible assembly facility for hybrid microsystems, as probing devices for in-situ tests on IC structures or just as a helpful teleoperated tool for the SEM operator when examining samples. Several flexible microrobots of this kind have been developed and tested. Driven by piezoactuators, these few cubic centimeters small mobile robots perform manipulations with a precision of up to 10 nm and transport the gripped objects at speeds of up to 3 cm/s. In accuracy, flexibility and price they are superior to conventional precision robots. A new SEM-suited microrobot prototype is described in this paper. The SEM's vacuum chamber has been equipped with various elements like flanges and CCD cameras to enable the robot to operate. In order to use the SEM image for the automatic real-time control of the robots, the SEM's electron beam is actively controlled by a PC. The latter submits the images to the robots' control computer system. For obtaining three-dimensional information in real time, especially for the closed-loop control of a robot endeffector, e.g. microgripper, a triangulation method with the luminescent spot of the SEM's electron beam is being investigated.
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Ferdinand Schmoeckel and Sergej Fatikow "Smart flexible microrobots for scanning electron microscope (SEM) applications", Proc. SPIE 3985, Smart Structures and Materials 2000: Smart Structures and Integrated Systems, (22 June 2000);

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