User Programs and Their Functions

Every PI controller is delivered with an extensive software package. The delivered user programs support the user in setting up and parametrizing the overall system. For the execution of motion commands and additional optimizations, no additional programming effort is necessary. Intuitively operable user interfaces, comprehensive online help pages, graphic visualizations, and simple automation possibilities support a quick introduction and trouble-free usage.


All positioning systems from PI can be controlled clearly and comfortably with PIMikroMove, independently of the drive principle, and the number and configuration of the axes. All connected controllers and axes are displayed in the same consistent graphical interface. Several axes can be controlled by different controllers and commanded with PIMikroMove in the same window. Using the Position Pad, the motion of two or more independent axes can be controlled using the mouse or joystick, even in vector moves.

Additional, useful functions are available using comfortable operating elements:


  • Data recorder for analyzing the system
  • >> Function Generator to simply generate user-defined periodic motion profiles
  • Visualizing the position of parallel kinematics
  • GCS-based host macros as addition to the macro functionality of the controllers with identical syntax and additional control commands. Any number of controllers can be addressed by one macro
  • >> Tuning Tool for digital piezo controllers
  • Scanning window, that is, depending on the position of one, or more axes, values can be determined and represented, e.g., analog or digital input, or position of another axis
  • Support of Fast Alignment tasks with representation of the determined data


PITerminal is a terminal program with which GCS commands can be directly sent to the controller. It can be used to interactively work with commands in customer programmed applications.

Data Recorder

Thanks to the integration into PIMikroMove, the data recorder is an easy to operate tool for the analysis of data and measured values. It stores data from various data sources while displaying them as a function of time, and offers a fast visualization.

All controllers have an internal data storage. This makes a precise storage of even very fast operations possible. The configuration and selection of the data sources and the type of triggers can comfortably be done using the data recorder window in PIMikroMove.

Typical data sources are:

  • Commanded and current position of the axis
  • Commanded axis velocity and acceleration
  • Motor output voltage per axis
  • Status information
  • Input voltage of the analog inputs
  • System-relevant internal signals


Stored, measured values are immediately displayed in the data recorder window in PIMikroMove. Thanks to highly developed functions a precise analysis and evaluation of the data can directly be carried out. In the integrated user dialog, an impulse can directly be commanded. The step response is recorded and represented graphically, therefore allowing for a fast analysis of the system behavior and for the tuning of the positioning behavior.

Examples of integrated functions:

  • Cursor and measurement functions
  • Zoom functions to be able to assess even the smallest signal motions
  • Filter and analysis functions as, e.g., FFT, algebra, derivative and statistic
  • Customizable options to represent the data
  • Import and export of recorded data from and into common data formats as, e.g., csv
  • Export to graphics file and standardized printer output

Tuning Tools

PI positioning systems are delivered with preconfigured operating parameters. Ideally, the operating parameters were determined for the application at hand. Depending on the hardware, the parameters are stored on the controller or on the ID chip, or they can be called from a parameter database using PIMikroMove.

Generally, operating parameters which ensure a robust operation are available for every system.

A customer-specific optimization for particular application requirements can be supported by the following tools:


Data recorder

The data recorder offers important information on how good the control loop is working. This information is of fundamental importance for an optimal parametrization. The following functions are available for this purpose:

  • Recording of step responses in closed-loop or open-loop operation
  • Simple analysis of the signals (derivative, differences between two signals, calculation of the signal spectrum using FFT)
  • In piezo actuators and piezo systems: Display of the transfer function in the Bode diagram
  • In hexapods: Display of the transfer function of a single strut


Piezo Dynamic Tuner

With the Piezo Dynamic Tuner the frequency and the step response of a system can be determined, and the settings for the servo parameters of the controller can be made. The user can set the control parameters and observe the respective system response. The type of system excitation and data recording can be configured to allow for an optimal characterization of the system. The Piezo Dynamic Tuner has various, powerful features for statistical analysis, determining the settling time, and for the import and export of the measured data.

  • Customized solution for piezo stages
  • Direct access to control and filter parameters
  • Support in calculating the servo-control parameters

Function and Frequency Generators

Many controllers, using the function generator, offer the possibility to store positioning values in internal tables, and to run them once or cyclically in real time. With it, predefined forms of motion such as sinus, ramp, or sawtooth but also any user-defined trajectory points can be commanded. The analysis of the dynamic behavior, scans, shaker applications, etc., are examples of applications thereof.

Depending on the prior knowledge of the user, either the function generator or the frequency generator tool are available on the host software side.