To enhance our worldwide leadership position in the design and manufacture of precision vibration control systems, through the introduction of innovative products and capabilities produced with state-of-the-art manufacturing processes for our customers within the semiconductor, semiconductor equipment, laser/electro-optic, life sciences and computer peripheral markets.
From 1969 until the early 1990's, TMC self-leveling air vibration isolation systems were second to none in overall vibration isolation performance. More recently, the relentless drive in industry toward ever-higher precision has required us to undertake a large, full-time R&D effort in order to develop more advanced products to meet our customers’ needs. Currently, TMC employs several scientists and engineers whose sole responsibility is to use advanced control theory to develop the most sophisticated vibration isolation systems commercially available. In the mid-1990’s, this research effort began to bear fruit. First, we introduced PEPS®
, the precision electronic positioning system which uses non-contacting height sensors to control the float height of an isolator to within a few microns. CSP®
allows us to achieve an extremely low natural frequency horizontally (0.3 Hz) passively, at a low-cost. MaxDamp®
is another low-cost solution to the problem of settling time of an isolated surface in response to motorized stage-induced motion. AccuDock™ quickly achieves repeatable docking of an isolated surface for quick loading and unloading of wafers or other objects with a robot.
TMC's 1998 purchase of the STACIS®
product lines from Barry Controls, a division of Applied Power Corporation, introduced new research and development opportunities. STACIS is simply the most advanced commercial vibration isolation system in the world with piezoelectric actuators canceling motion from 0.6 Hz to 250 Hz in six degrees of freedom.
In recent years, TMC has not only continued to improve our existing advanced product line, but has introduced a range of new, breakthrough products incorporating our patented STACIS technology. Among our latest innovations are STACIS®
iX LaserTable-Base™, hybrid piezoelectric/air vibration cancellation for optical tables; STACIS®
iX Stage-Base™, a cost-effective, frame-mountable, piezoelectric vibration cancellation system designed to be integrated into advanced semiconductor tools which incorporate high-precision motorized stages; STACIS®
, active hard-mount vibration cancellation for scanning electron microscopes; TableTop PZT™, sub-Hz active hard-mount vibration cancellation for small precision instruments; and Mag-NetX®
, magnetic field cancellation systems.
TMC's research efforts and manufacturing innovations have established a series of industry "firsts" in product design and manufacturing techniques.
- CleanTop® is the first and still the best way to render an optical top spillproof: by epoxying a nylon cup under each tapped hole. All competitive designs attempt the same end, but, sacrifice overall table features.
- TMC optical tops are the first to register the honeycomb cells to the tapped hole pattern.
- Our Gimbal Piston™ isolators are rugged, dry, oil-free, air isolators that isolate the work surface from both vertical and horizontal vibration with high efficiency at low cost.
- Quiet Island® sub-floor platforms are a breakthrough in supporting sensitive equipment in a cleanroom, raised-floor environment with rigid, pneumatic, or piezoelectric support.
- The ClassOne™ workstation is the first all electro-polished, stainless steel vibration isolation system.
- STACIS® III is simply the most advanced vibration isolation system commercially available, employing an active piezoelectric vibration isolation system.
- TMC's 730 Series Optical Top has combined our inherently clean CleanTop® design with several new proprietary design features, cleaning methods, and a vacuum pump-down procedure to achieve a level of vacuum compatibility previously unattainable.
- CleanBench™ (patent pending) is the first vibration isolation table to combine the best features of spill-proof steel optical honeycomb tops with high density, high stiffness & damping laminated tops.
- Everstill™, a patented bench-top active vibration isolation platform for small instruments, incorporates a "serial type" active architecture for superior low frequency performance
With approximately 20 engineers and scientists, few organizations can claim to have an understanding of floor vibration comparable to ours. Furthermore, few companies our size can claim to match TMC's in-depth knowledge of metal fabrication techniques and state-of-the-art manufacturing processes. Yet, it is the combination of these two assets that sets TMC head and shoulders above any other company in our field.
Many who tour our facility are surprised to see how far we have vertically integrated our factory. For the vast majority of our products, we literally start with 16-ft long sheet steel. In this era of specialization, core capabilities, and sub-contracting, we have maintained our mission as the leading experts in the design and manufacture of precision vibration control systems.
Laser Cutter – Our programmable combination 2000-watt laser/turret-punch work centers allow TMC to provide rounded corners and special cutouts for our CleanTop tops and prepare the top skins for subsequent automated drilling and tapping. Apart from CleanTop tops, many of our other standard and custom parts are processed through these centers.
Surface Finishing – One of the many steps in the CleanTop manufacturing process, this machine deburrs the sheet and produces a non-reflective "orbital" finish. The sheet is subsequently cleaned in our TMC-designed industrial washing center. The finished sheet is completely free of cutting oil and debris, even in the threaded holes.
Cupsorter – This machine is among the many unique and novel tools at TMC. Designed and manufactured internally, this device facilitates the rapid placement of the patented CleanTop cups in a precise, repeatable pattern. The device feeds and indexes cups from a syntron-feeder to either a metric or imperial pattern matrix. The grid of 72 cups is then lifted and placed using a special template.
Steel Bending – The profession of sheet-metal mechanic has nearly become a lost-art. Our highly experienced mechanics operate state-of-the-art CNC press-brakes, laser/turret-punch machines, punch presses, folding machines, and other dedicated machinery. Their expertise allows us to provide fully integrated vibration isolation solutions, not simply modules and catalog items.
Robot Welder – Our welding capacity consists of a team of professional, highly experienced welders. In addition, we now have an Automated Robotic Welding Facility to improve speed, cost, quality and repeatability of regularly manufactured items.
Steel ends– Our System 1 and 63-500 Series posts demonstrate TMC's innovative design philosophy. When a tubular steel shaped post is required to house an air isolator, most competitive designs start with cut-to-length steel square tube. TMC starts with a flat steel sheet or plate then lasers, punches, bends, and welds to form the part. This approach has four major advantages: Flat steel is much less expensive than tube steel. Flat steel can be laser-cut or sheared to length. Tube steel must be saw-cut which is expensive and imprecise. Tube steel has very poor dimensional and is only nominally square. Formed parts are precise. Any required holes can be punched or laser-cut in the flat prior to bending. This is much less expensive than drilling tube.