I describe a remote-controlled micromanipulator platform that is stable, durable, precise, and easy to construct. Small metallic bellows are used for hydraulic control, where all fluid connections are made by standard 1/16-in. high-performance liquid chromatography fittings. Inspired by the parallelogram suspension utilized in the larger Huxley-style micromanipulator (A. F. Huxley. J. Physiol. Lond. 157: 6-5P, 1961), the device is a compact cradle suspension of folded lever arms that creates vertical motions which have minimal cross-coupled horizontal error. A simple arrangement for securing the bellows in the remote controller counteracts the vertical cross-coupling error that arises in the parallelogram suspension so that the position of the microtool more faithfully corresponds to the micrometer settings. Being compact, the micromanipulator can be mounted on a microscope stage to eliminate the microscope's resonance as a source of vibration. This feature also reduces the cantilevering of the microtool that 1) is a source of parasitic vibrations and 2) limits the load bearing in larger devices which can only be placed alongside the microscope. The device has a good dynamic response, and one design suits both right- and left-handed use.
- Copyright © 1991 the American Physiological Society