Motorized Stages

Dover Motion’s motorized stages include motorized translation stages with up to 635 mm of travel, XY tables, vertical Z stages, and microscope stages. Our motorized stages feature stepper and servo single and multi-axis motors, built-in motion controllers, and optimal travel time for precision motion. As a leader in creating motion solutions for the life sciences industry, we also specialize in manufacturing standard and custom motorized optical stages that meet higher precision and accuracy requirements for use with optical instruments, including microscopes and cameras.

SmartStage motorized stage

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The SmartStage™ XY motorized linear positioning stages feature a built-in motion controller, ONE external cable, and have 5 nm resolution with 0.8 um bi-directional repeatability.

Focusing Stages

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Our Z stages offering includes traditional Z stages for objective focusing and Z stages for sample positioning or Z-Lift stages .

Direct Drive Stages

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Our direct drive linear motor stages include linear servo motors and offer higher speed, acceleration, and accuracy than belt-drive, lead screw, or rack and pinion actuators.

XY Stages

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Our XY tables include high performance, open frame, monolithic high load, and custom designed XY tables that move in two degrees of freedom and offer high precision and efficiency for digital imaging applications.

Screw driven linear translation stage

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Our screw driven motorized stages range from stages with monolithic integrated XY centers to low-cost, single axis stages with crossed roller ways and stepper motors.

Motorized Stage for microscope

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Our microscope stages are made with embedded high-performance precision electronics required to control motion within the stage without increasing its size.

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Motorized Stage Guide

Need to know a little bit more before you can make your decision? Below is additional information about motorized stages. Contact us to speak with our staff who can answer any of your technical questions.

What is a motorized stage?

The motorized stage provides precise automated positioning and is available in single or multi-axis architectures. It is also commonly referred to as a motorized table or motorized actuator.  Each axis of a motorized stage must constrain the six degrees of freedom (X, Y, Z, roll, pitch, and yaw) of the payload to only one, producing automation along a single axis of motion. This is accomplished with a set of linear bearings, which are mounted to a metal base to provide a stiff structure.  Our stages designed specifically for vertical motion can be viewed on our Z Stages page.

Motorized linear stage with shuttle

How does a motorized stage work?

Once the payload has been constrained to a single degree of freedom, the system’s next mission is to actuate the payload and provide precise incremental linear motion along the guideway.

Linear actuator methods include:

  • Friction screws with anti-backlash nuts
  • Ball screws
  • Belt and pulley
  • Rack and pinion
  • Piezo actuators
  • Linear motors

Using a linear motor is generally considered to be optimal for high speed motion systems and is the most precise and repeatable linear motion actuation technology.

A motorized stage with a linear motor requires a linear feedback device as well as a servo drive and control to close a position feedback loop. With a high-resolution linear encoder, linear actuators can provide position control down to the nanometer level. A typical application for high precision linear actuators is to control the focus of a microscope objective in a digital imaging system.

Types of Motorized Stages

What is a motorized optical stage?

A motorized optical stage is a stage that is designed for use with optical instruments such as microscopes or cameras and is moved by a motor. It provides precise control over the position and movement of samples and optical components. The motorized optical stage has higher precision and accuracy requirements than the general motorized stage, as the movement of the sample or component needs to be very precise for accurate imaging or analysis. Some motorized optical stages have additional features such as encoder feedback for closed-loop control, joystick or computer control, and programmable motion profiles, which are specific to optical applications.

At Dover Motion, we specialize in designing and manufacturing motorized optical stages that meet the highest standards of accuracy and reliability. Our stages are designed to deliver smooth, stable motion with sub-micron positioning accuracy, even in harsh environments or challenging applications. They range from single-axis stages for simple applications to multi-axis systems for complex processes and are available in a variety of sizes and configurations, with options for linear or rotary motion. Our experienced team of engineers works closely with our customers to understand their specific requirements and design custom motorized optical stages that are tailored to their unique needs.

What is a translation stage with a motor?

A translation stage with a motor is a precision mechanical device used in motion control applications that allows for precise linear movement along single or multiple axes. The motor is used to drive the translation stage, providing smooth and precise motion control. Translation stages with a motor are commonly used in scientific research, bio-medical, life sciences, metrology, semiconductor, precise manufacturing, and other industries where precise positioning is required.