Synchronous source and measure system M81-SSM

From Lake Shore Cryotronics

The Lake Shore MeasureReady™ M81-SSM (Synchronous Source and Measure) system provides a straightforward approach for advanced applications in electrical measurements. The M81 reduces the hardware complexity of multiple function-specific instrumentation setups. It provides from one hand the combining of DC and AC sourcing with DC and AC measurement and it includes lock‑in sensitivity.

A M81 set-up ensures inherently synchronized measurements from 1 to 3 source channels and from 1 to 3 measure channels and thus can be easily adapted to a wide range of materials and research applications.

  • All source and measure channels are capable of DC and AC to 100 kHz
  • Modular concept, which is perfect to suit a specific application in electric measurements
  • Common DAC/ADC sampling clock for consistent source and measure timing
  • Optimized for fundamental, harmonic, and phase AC plus DC bias measurements

Weitere Informationen

The M81-SSM provides DC and AC stimulus and measurement capabilities for electrical characterizing of materials and devices under cryogenic temperatures up to high-temperature environments. 

Choose a combination of differential current source and voltage measurement modules for low-resistance applications. Or mix and match with additional voltage source and current measurement modules for complex higher-impedance or gate-biasing applications where precise voltage control and sweeping test regimes are required.

Unlike a narrow-bandwidth DC system, these modules operate from very low frequencies to 100 kHz. You can select a measurement bandwidth to avoid 1/f noise or avoid other bands where test environment noise is highest.

The system’s MeasureSync™ technology samples all sourcing and measurement channels at precisely the same time, enabling multiple DUTs to be tested under identical conditions so you can obtain consistent data.

The included MeasureLINK™ software provides configurable measurement scripts and loops to support a variety of applications and for an easy integration with Lake Shore as well as with third-party systems. 

These combined capabilities make the M81‑SSM a superior solution for characterizing several test structures, including nanostructures, single- and multilayer atomic structures, MEMs, quantum structures, organic semiconductors, and superconducting materials.


M81 instrument - source channels

Source channel functions: DC, sine, triangle (up to 5 kHz), square (up to 5 kHz)
Source sync functions: Synchronize to another channel or external reference input
Frequency range: 100 µHz to 100 kHz (or module bandwidth, whichever is lesser)
Frequency resolution: Greater of 100 µHz, 6 digits
Frequency accuracy: 0.06%

M81 instrument - measure channels

Measure channel functions: DC, AC (RMS, peak), and lock-in (X and Y, R and Θ)
Lock-in reference: Any source channel, or external reference input
Reference in: BNC—sine >100 mV p – p ≥0.1 Hz; square ≥3.3 V
Reference out: BNC—3.3 V square
Total harmonic distortion: <0.1% from DC to 100 kHz, typical
Sample rate: 375 kSa/s
Warm-up time: 60 min to achieve specified accuracy

VM-10 voltage measure module

Input coupling: DC or AC (0.1 Hz)
Ranges: 10 V, 1 V, 100 mV, 10 mV; seamless, automatic transitions
Best sensitivity: <1 nV (10 mV range, 10 s, 95% confidence interval)
Input impedance: 100 MΩ, 120 pF
Leakage current: <15 pA
CMRR: 80 dB up to 1 kHz

BCS-10 balanced current source module

Ranges: 100 mA, 10 mA, 1 mA, 100 μA, 10 μA, 1 μA, 100 nA, 10 nA; automatic selection
Compliance: 20 V differential, 10 V single-ended (non-settable)
Maximum power: 1 W, 4-quadrant operation
CMR modes: Off, internal, external
Coupling: DC or AC (1 Hz)
Load impedance: Stability maintained with reactive loads up to 50 µF or 1 mH (with 100 Ω damping)

CM-10 current measure module

Ranges: 100 mA, 10 mA, 1 mA, 100 μA, 10 μA, 1 μA, 100 nA, 10 nA, 1 nA; automatic transitions
Input offset voltage: <50 µV
Leakage current: Greater of 10 ppm of range, 1 pA
Settable bias voltage: ±10 V
Bias voltage settable resolution: 320 µV
Best sensitivity: <10 fA (1 nA range, 10 s, 95% confidence interval)

VS-10 voltage source module

Ranges: V: 10 V, 1 V, 100 mV, 10 mV; AC range can be independently set lower than the DC range; automatic selection
Current limit: Settable up to 100 mA peak
Maximum power: 1 W, 4-quadrant operation
Output impedance: <150 mΩ
Load impedance: Stability maintained with reactive loads up to 50 µF or 1 mH (with 100 Ω damping)


DC transport: I-V curves, 4-wire

(VS module + CM module, primarily)
Ideal for: 2D materials, nanowires, organic semiconductors
M81 advantages: Low-voltage source noise, low-current measure noise

AC transport: AC resistance, sheet resistance, and AC current Hall

(BCS module + VM module)
Ideal for: Metal-insulator transitions, 2D materials, superconducting materials
M81 advantages: AC current Hall: synchronous measurement of resistance and Hall voltages; and simultaneous measurement of up to three devices in a cryostat at different frequencies

Photodiodes and phototransistors

(CM module + occasionally VS module)
Ideal for: IR sensitive materials, solar‑blind materials, 2D materials
M81 advantages: Programmable offset voltage source

Spin transport

(DC/AC: BCS module + VM module)
Ideal for: Spin-orbit torque (SOT), non‑local resistance, spin valves
M81 advantages: SOT: synchronous measurement of resistance, Hall voltages, and harmonic Hall voltages

Differential conductance

(VS module + CM module)
Ideal for: MIS junctions, Josephson junctions, defect characterization in transistors 
M81 advantages: Junctions: dual DAC AC and DC sourcing (source at appropriate range)

Thermal transport

(AC, BCS module + VM module)
Ideal for: Thermoelectric materials, 1D materials
M81 advantages: Phase-correlated current sources, synchronous harmonic detection


AppNote Common mode noise interference


M81 Synchronous Source Measure System


Dr. Marc Kunzmann
Dr. Marc Kunzmann
Matthias Müller
Matthias Müller


Quantum Design GmbH

Breitwieserweg 9
64319 Pfungstadt

Telefon:+49 6157 80710-0
Fax:+49 6157 80710920
Dr. Marc KunzmannProdukt Manager - Kryotechnologie & Materialwissenschaften
+49 6157 80710-46
E-Mail schreiben

Matthias MüllerProdukt Manager - Kryotechnologie & Materialwissenschaften
+49 6157 80710-554
E-Mail schreiben