Easy Laboratory Automation with Ensemble LAB

Product Announcement from Aerotech, Inc.

Design Features

  • Up to 4 axes of brush, stepper or brushless AC motors
  • Aerotech's FlashConfig feature automatically configures axis parameters based on the connected stage type
  • Touch screen with intuitive menu-driven interface for quick and easy access to system functionality
  • Joystick input for manual control of motor positions
  • Ethernet and USB 2.0 communication interfaces
  • ASCII-based command protocol for Windows or Linux remote control
  • Advanced Windows-based remote diagnostics, tuning and programming interface software
  • Program in AeroBasic using Aerotech's IDE or create custom remote interfaces with Microsoft .NET including C#, VB.NET, C++/CLI, LabVIEW, and MATLAB
  • Standard quadrature or optional analog sin/cos encoder feedback with up to 65,536X interpolation
  • Programmable micro-step resolution of up to 20,000X for smooth low-speed operation
  • Linear and arc motion with constant velocity or point-to-point interpolation

Ensemble® Lab is designed for applications where ease of operation is desired without sacrificing overall system capability. The front-panel interface allows an operator to quickly execute simple operations such as jogging, homing, and moving to fixed positions. For more complex operations the Ensemble LAB has onboard memory for storing programs that can be accessed from the front panel or through remote control.

Touch Screen Interface

In addition to the front key-panel the Ensemble LAB comes equipped with a full color, touch-enabled LCD display. An intuitive tabbed interface provides single press access to all setup and operation screens.

Powerful Programming Functionality

Unlike most competitive products that use cryptic two-letter mnemonics, the Ensemble LAB is programmed in an easily readable BASIC-like syntax. The Ensemble LAB is programmed off-line with a graphical user interface in Windows®, featuring an intuitive Program Editor, Variable Output window, Compiler Output window and Task State monitor. After the programs are developed and tested they can be downloaded and stored on the controller for future use. Precoded LabVIEW® VIs, AeroBasic™ programming functionality, MATLAB® library, .NET tools for C#, VB.NET and C++/CLI or C make the Ensemble even easier to use. See the Ensemble Control home page for detailed information on software capabilities and ordering options.

Automatic Parameter Configuration

Aerotech's MPS series of stages includes Aerotech's "FlashConfig" feature that stores all of the parametric information required to operate the stage on the stage itself. The stage is automatically identified and all operational parameters including axis calibration data are uploaded into the Ensemble LAB, ensuring safe, accurate operation and true "plug-and-play" operation. FlashConfig provides maximum flexibility for laboratory environments where systems are often reconfigured to meet changing application requirements.

Multitasking Capability

Up to 4 programs can run simultaneously on the Ensemble LAB allowing for easy partitioning of complex operations. One task could be used for motion while the remaining tasks are used for process control, or the controller could be configured to operate four separate programs controlling four motors.

Advanced DSP Control

The Ensemble LAB uses the processing power of a 64-bit, double precision, floating-point DSP to offer exceptional performance in a variety of applications including point-to-point motion, linear and circular interpolation, single- and multi-axis error correction, direct commutation of linear and rotary brushless servomotors, and servo autotuning. High-speed interrupts and data logging capabilities provide a real-time link to external systems. The Ensemble LAB also offers high-speed position latching capability and optional single-axis PSO (Position Synchronized Output). Whether the requirement is simple point-to-point motion or complex velocity profiled contours with output on the fly, Ensemble ensures peak performance for critical applications.

EPICS and TANGO Drivers

The Ensemble LAB includes full compatibility with both EPICS and TANGO distributed control protocols. Both interfaces are used at leading light source (synchrotron) facilities and other government laboratories, allowing the Ensemble LAB to seamlessly integrate into applications at all major research institutions.

Versatile, Multi-Axis Control

The Ensemble LAB utilizes low-noise linear power stage technology capable of controlling brush, brushless and stepper motors. Configuration flexibility allows users to seamlessly choose the appropriate motor technology to address a wide range of application requirements.