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Production sequence of Si-spheres and interferometrical determination of the sphere volume

Precision Engineering

Division 5

Dimensions from several metres down to nanometres — precise dimensional metrology as backbone of a reliable and sustainable industrial production.


It is the main task of the division to assure the traceability of industrial measurements in different length and angle ranges by application of special measuring instruments, methods and standards. Also hardness metrology belongs to its scope. The aim of these activities is to offer traceability to industry in an adequate way and to jointly solve respective measurement challenges.
The research and development activities needed for these tasks focus on new measurement methods, instrumentation and standards. In addition the division is engaged in manufacturing and measurement tasks in the field foundations of metrology. The Scientific Instrumentation offers construction and manufacturing services for special components and precision instruments for the whole PTB.


Micro- and nanopillars made of crystalline silicon and gallium nitride have been produced for PTB as reference artefacts for nanometrology. The aim of the work is to produce reference objects for nanomechanical and dimensional measurements to check and calibrate nanoindenters, atomic force microscopes and optical topography measuring instruments. First pillars with two diameters (0.5 μm and 0.7 μm) and five different heights from 0.5 μm to 11 μm were manufactured and characterized.

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In cooperation with the Center for Microtechnologies of the TU Chemnitz, a micro-opto-electro-mechanical force sensor with integrated tunable Fabry-Perot resonator was developed for measuring small forces with high resolution and a large measuring range. With this device it is also possible to determine the radiation pressure of lasers and thus to trace it back to a mechanical unit. First measurements of the radiation pressure of a semiconductor laser revealed a noise limitation of the micro force sensor of ~1 pN.

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Data Analysis Service for Precision Engineering

The data analysis support provides advice to adopt numerical and system theoretical procedures to the specific tasks of the different departments. The support covers detailed advice and implementation support as well as tests and comparisons. Furthermore, the roughness reference software RPTB is also taken care of here, Opens external link in new windowhttps://www.ptb.de/rptb.

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