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

Im Tiefen See 58
64293 Darmstadt

Telefon:+49 6151 8806-0
Fax:+49 6151 8806920
Dr. Marc KunzmannProdukt Manager - Kryotechnologie & Materialwissenschaften
+49 6151 8806-46
E-Mail schreiben

Matthias MüllerProdukt Manager - Kryotechnologie & Materialwissenschaften
+49 6151 8806-554
E-Mail schreiben