Header and Body 3

Technology

This invention presents an alternate strategy wherein alignment is achieved via kinematics with an easy-to-manufacture, low-cost, and passive system.  In this system, kinematic constraints are implemented by supporting the stamp on a set of three smooth spherical balls.  When the misaligned bottom surface is moved up towards the stamp, the stamp first loses contact with one ball and gradually comes into contact with the substrate along an edge.  With further actuation, the stamp loses contact with the second ball and then the third ball, whereby the stamp then “sits” entirely on top of the substrate.  As the alignment process is decoupled from the contact force, fragile features can be imprinted by independently tuning the contact force to infinitesimally small values.