Motion Control

Automation System Retrofit Transforms 175-Ton Hydraulic Forming Press

Southern Manufacturing Group (SMG) of Morrison, TN, makes automotive components and industrial valves. In 2012, the automation system for its 175-ton hydraulic forming press received electrical damage resulting from a lightning strike (Figure 1). Purchasing a new hydraulic forming press would be prohibitively expensive — in the range of hundreds of thousands of dollars. Therefore, SMG needed a company that could repair the forming press in a short timeframe to maintain its production schedule.

Posted in: Application Briefs, Motion Control

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DryLin® E7 plastic linear plain bearings versus PTFE-lined plain bearings

Linear plain bearings are becoming commonplace in today’s manufacturing industry. As technologies and material sciences have advanced, so have the capabilities of linear plain bearings, particularly those made of plastic, such as the DryLin® series of self-lubricating linear bearings from igus®. This whitepaper will compare how they outperform a competitive linear plain bearing technology, which uses a PTFE-based, bonded liner, in both wear and friction testing.

Posted in: White Papers, Government, Motion Control

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Choosing the Right Potentiometer for Reliable Sensing

In today’s market, there are a variety of available types of position sensing systems. It is important to compare unique features to application needs in order to find the best fit. A potentiometer sensor is an electromechanical component that consists of a resistor where the voltage divider value can be measured at any position by means of sliding contacts between the applied voltage values. Physically, a potentiometer consists, at a minimum, of a resistance track, a collector track, and a sliding contact that can be moved along the resistance track by means of mechanics (Figure 1). The movement of the sliding contact can be rotatory (angle) or translational (path).

Posted in: Articles, Motion Control

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Embedded Virtualization Enables Highly Integrated “Soft Motion” Platforms on the PC

With the increased processing power that PCs have attained, a complex machine that used to require an expensive and dedicated hardware-based motion control solution can now be accomplished on a multicore PC running on a real-time operating system (RTOS).

Posted in: Application Briefs, Motion Control

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Sense Element Pump Ripple Fatigue

Aerospace sensor technology is plagued by the balance between sensitivity and durability. As devices become more fragile in the pursuit of achieving higher accuracy they find themselves torn apart in the process. Hydra-Electric solves this using a special sense element of stainless steel construction capable of withstanding the harshest pressure spike environments without the use of a snubber. Using finite element analysis, it was revealed that near infinite fatigue life is achieved even in high pressure applications. This demonstrates the superiority of a stainless steel flexure sense element over conventional piezoresistive silicon (PRT).

Posted in: White Papers, Aeronautics, Motion Control, Data Acquisition, Sensors

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Nonlinear Model Predictive Control

This whitepaper presents an automatic workflow for implementing Model Predictive Control (MPC) controllers. The process uses MapleSim to generate a model of the system, whose dynamic equations are then extracted using Maple. Next, Maple is used to formulate the MPC problem, and generate the solver, which it automatically converts into the C code of the MPC controller. The advantage of using Maple is that the required procedures and their corresponding derivatives are computed and optimized whenever there is a change in the dynamic equations. The use of Maple saves time, removes human error, and produces highly optimized controller code.

Posted in: White Papers, Electronics & Computers, Mechanical Components, Motion Control

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Piezo Drive

The Ensemble QDe™ desktop nanopositioning piezo drive from Aerotech (Pittsburgh, PA) was designed for seamless use with the Ensemble family of drives and controllers. The QDe connects to any Ensemble controller network, enabling coordinated motion between piezo stages and servo axes. The drive is suitable for single- or multi-axis applications such as point-to-point motion, linear and circular interpolation, multi-axis error correction, and autofocusing. High-speed interrupts and data logging capabilities provide a real-time link to external systems.

Posted in: Products, Motion Control

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