Motorized Linear Translation Stage Selection Guide

The Widest Range of Precision Linear Stages Offered in the Industry

Motorized Linear Stages from Newport are designed and built using many decades of experience in providing solutions to many markets including research and academia, industrial, semiconductor, aerospace and defense. We also offer Nanopositioning Linear Stages based on piezo motor technology and Custom Multi-Axis Stack Solutions.

Motorized Linear Stage Basics

A motorized linear translation stage is used to precisely position an object along a single axis. Motorized linear stages include a moving platform and stationary base joined by a bearing system. Position is controlled electronically with the use of a motion controller. Motorized stages are preferred for high load/high speed applications, as well as applications where manual adjustment may be difficult. See Motion Basics and Standards for more information. We also offer Manual Linear Translation Stages that can be positioned using a micrometer head, adjustment screw or linear actuator.

Drive Types

The drive type, or motor, of a stage has a significant impact on its capabilities, performance and price. Newport offers a variety of drive types – stepper motors, DC motors, linear motors and piezos – within our standard products to best meet your application and budget.  Other factors such as type of bearing, construction material, and position feedback also affect stage performance, but presented in this table is a general summary of performance by drive type:

Drive Type Travel Speed Resolution Repeatability Load Price
Linear Motor Long Fast High High High $$$
Brushless DC Medium Medium Medium High High $$$
DC Motor Medium Medium Medium Medium High $$
Stepper Motor Medium Medium Medium Medium Medium $
Piezo Motor Short Slow High Low High $$

For more details about drive type and other translation stage components, please see our Stage Components Considerations technical note.

Linear Motor Stages

Linear motors consist of a permanent magnet assembly which establishes a magnetic flux, and a coil assembly which generates a force proportional to coil current. Linear motors have become very important components of precision positioning systems, with numerous advantages over traditional mechanical actuators such as ball screws. These systems typically provide higher quality, frictionless motion, and higher speeds and acceleration.

Series Travel Range
(mm)
Minimum Incremental Motion
(µm)
Bi-directional Repeatability, Guaranteed
(µm)
 Accuracy, Guaranteed
(µm)
Maximum Speed
(mm/s)
Normal Load Capacity (Cz)
(N)
XML210-S
XM Ultra-Precision Linear Motor Stages
XMS:
50
100
160
XML:
210
350
0.0011 ± 0.04 XMS:
± 0.75
XML:
± 1.5
300 XMS:
100
XML:
300
IDL280-600LM
IDL Industrial Grade Linear Motor Linear Stages
100
200
300
400
450
500
600
700
750
1000
1200
0.05 100-600 mm:
± 0.25
700-1200 mm:
± 0.5
± 2
± 2
± 2
± 2.3
± 2.5
± 2.7
± 3
± 3.3
± 3.5
± 4.3
± 5
2000 IDL165:
450
IDL225:
1000
IDL280:
1500
IDL560:
2000
IMS300LM-S
IMS-LM 600 N Load Aluminum Linear Motor Stages
300
400
500
600
800
1000
1200
0.02 300-600 mm:
± 0.25
800-1200 mm:
± 0.5
± 4.5
± 4.5
± 5.5
± 7.5
± 9
± 9
± 9
10002 600
(SA: 100)
MC-ILS-LM
IILS-LM 250 N Load Aluminum Linear Motor Stages
100
200
300
0.01 ± 0.3 ± 1.5
± 2
± 2.5
500 250
MC-DL
DL Optical Delay Line Linear Motor Linear Stages
125
225
325
0.075 ± 0.15 ± 1.5
± 2
± 2.5
500 20
ONE-XY
ONE-XY Series Mid-Travel Integrated XY Linear Stages
50
90
190
290
0.05 ± 0.07
± 0.08
± 0.09
± 0.1
N-HA / HA:
± 1.5 / ± 0.3
± 2 / ± 0.3
± 2.5 / ± 0.4
± 3 / ± 0.5
200 100
120
150
350

1When driven with an XPS-DRV11 universal driver card and dependent on environment, load and speed conditions.
2With XPS-EDBL high-power motor driver. Maximum speed is 500 mm/s with XPS-DRV11 universal driver card.

DC Motor Stages

DC motors are best characterized by their smooth motion and high speeds. They provide good efficiency and a high power/weight ratio. A brushed DC motor essentially consists of a rotor placed in a magnetic field, which causes rotation when current is applied to the motor windings. The rotational speed is proportional to the applied voltage, while the torque is proportional to the current. Precise closed-loop servo positioning and speed control is typically achieved with a shaft-mounted rotary encoder, and for ultra-precise positioning, a direct reading encoder on the drive train may be used. Note that unlike stepper motors, DC motors do not provide full torque when idle.

Series Travel Range
(mm)
Minimum Incremental Motion
(µm)
Bi-directional Repeatability, Guaranteed
(µm)
Accuracy, Guaranteed
(µm)
Maximum Speed
(mm/s)
Normal Load Capacity (Cz)
(N)
MC-VP25XA-S
VP Compact Aluminum DC Motor Linear Stages
25 XL:
0.01
XA:
0.1
XL:
± 0.07
XA:
± 0.1
± 1 25 60
MC-GTS150
GTS High Torque Aluminum DC Motor Linear Stages
70
150
0.1 ± 0.1 ± 1 50 100
MC-ILS-S
ILS 50-250 mm Travel Aluminum DC Motor Linear Stages
50
100
150
200
250
HA:
0.3
CC & CCL:
1
HA:
± 0.35
CC & CCL:
± 1
HA / CC & CCL:
± 1.25 / ± 1.5
± 1.5 / ± 2
± 2 / ± 2.5
± 3 / ± 3.75
± 3.75 / ± 5
HA & CC:
100
CCL:
50
250
MC-IMS300-S
IMS 300-600 mm Travel Aluminum DC Motor Linear Stages
300
400
500
600
CCHA:
0.2
CC and PP:
1.25
CCHA:
± 0.5
CC:
± 1.25
CCHA / CC:
± 4 / ± 5
± 4 / ± 5
± 5 / ± 6
± 6.5 / ± 9
200 600
MC-MTN200CC
MTN High Load Capacity Steel DC Motor Linear Stages
100
200
300
BLHS:
0.3
CC:
0.6
BLHS:
± 0.5
CC:
± 1.5
BLHS / CC:
± 4 / ± 2.5
± 4 / ± 2.5
± 4 / ± 3
BLHS:
250
CC:
100
1000
MC-UTS Series
UTS Low Profile Steel DC Motor Linear Stagess
50
100
150
0.3 ± 1.75 ± 2.25
± 2.75
± 3.25
40 200
MC-MFA-3-S
MFA Miniature Steel DC Motor Linear Stages
25 0.1 CC:
± 0.75
CCV6:
± 1
± 3 CC:
2.5
CCV6:
1.25
CC:
50
CCV6:
25

Stepper Motor Stages

Stepper motors are often used in open-loop control systems, a lower cost alternative to closed-loop DC servo systems. They operate using the basic principle of magnetic attraction and repulsion. Steppers convert digital pulses into mechanical shaft rotation. The amount of rotation is directly proportional to the number of input pulses generated, and speed is proportional to pulse frequency. Pulse count is a good indicator of position, and adding a shaft encoder can further improve performance.

Series Travel Range
(mm)
Minimum Incremental Motion
(µm)
Bi-directional Repeatability, Guaranteed
(µm)
Accuracy, Guaranteed
(µm)
Maximum Speed
(mm/s)
Normal Load Capacity (Cz)
(N)
MC-MFA-3-S
MFA Miniature Steel Stepper Motor Linear Stages
25 0.1 ± 0.75 ± 3 1 50
MC-UTS Series
UTS Low Profile Steel Stepper Motor Linear Stages
50
100
150
0.33 ± 3 ± 2.5
± 3.5
± 4
PP:
20
PPV6:
10
PP:
200
PPV6:
100
MC-MTN200PP
MTN High Load Steel Stepper Motor Linear Stages
100
200
300
0.1 ± 2.75 ± 2.5
± 2.5
± 3
PP:
40
PPV6:
20
1000
MC-ILS-BPP
ILS 50-250 mm Travel Aluminum Stepper Motor Linear Stages
50
100
150
200
250
1 ± 1 ± 1.5
± 2
± 2.5
± 3.7
± 5
50 250
IMS300-S
IMS 300-600 mm Travel Aluminum Stepper Motor Linear Stages
300
400
500
600
1.25 ± 1.25 ± 5
± 5
± 6
± 9
100 600
MC-FCL100_0
CL Intelligent Stepper Linear Stage With Integrated Controller
50
100
200
0.15 ± 2.25
± 2.5
± 2.5
± 2
± 2.5
± 4
20 250

30.3 µm with XPS; 0.5 µm with ESP302 or SMC100PP.