Motion Control

Controlling Devices Using the Ear as an Output Source

This method creates a hands-free way of controlling devices such as medical equipment, wheelchairs, computers, and cell phones.Current methods of device control include joysticks, which involve using one or both hands, external microphones that are cumbersome and pick up ambient noise, and external arrays that are also cumbersome and can restrict a user’s movement. Additionally, the external microphone and array options do not provide a high level of accuracy in certain situations.

Posted in: Bio-Medical, Briefs, Briefs

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Computer-Assisted Laser Treatment Using Real-Time Retinal Tracking

This computerized system accurately guides laser shots to diseased retinal areas. Diabetic retinopathy resulting from long-term diabetes mellitus is one of the common diseases that leads to choroidal neovascularization (CNV), a leading cause of blindness. Among the currently available treatment methods, a laser can be used to photocoagulate the diseased areas. Several thousand laser shots are usually required during such treatment. Special care must be taken to avoid hitting the blood vessel tree, the macula, the optic disk, and the region among them. For a single eye, this procedure requires up to several hours that are usually divided over many treatment sessions. Consequently, the development of an accurate laser treatment guidance system to treat the whole retina in one session would improve the effectiveness of such procedures.

Posted in: Bio-Medical, Briefs, TSP, Briefs, TSP, Lasers & Laser Systems, Photonics

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Optical Encoder Module

Avago Technologies (San Jose, CA) introduced the AEDS-964x optical encoder modules, with resolutions of up to 360 lines per inch, for printing applications. The modules are used with a transmissive code strip to detect linear motion, or with an 11 mm optical radius transmissive code wheel for rotary motion. Features include: RoHS-compliant lead-free package, wide resolution range, two-channel quadrature output, lensed LED light source, guide bumps, and an optical design insensitive to radial, tangential, and axial misalignment.

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Digital Torquemeter

S. Himmelstein and Co. (Hoffman Estates, IL) released the MCRT® 48200V Series Compact Digital Torquemeters, having no pots, switches, and requires no manual adjustment. The non-contact devices have full-scale ranges from 25 to 10,000 lbf-in. Two accuracy grades are available: 0.2% (Code N standard performance) and 0.15% (Code C enhanced performance). The series outputs ±10 V or ±5 V analogs of torque and engineering unit data via com port. Features include internal signal processing accurate to 14 bits; strain gage sensing; alloy steel shaft with 200% torque overload capacity; NIST traceable calibration; noise tolerance; and optional speed pickup. Included is software that interfaces with Windows® PCs that displays engineering unit current, peak, valley, and spread data, as well as classifying limits and plotting in real time.

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Multi-Axis Controllers & Drives

Festo Corp. (Hauppauge, NY) released the SEC-ACSMLC Multi-Axis Controller and SEC-SDD drive. Featuring the CoDeSys programming platform, the SEC-AC-SMLC is based on the IEC61131-3 standard, offering the programming languages of Relay Ladder Logic, Function Block Diagram, Structured Text, Instruction List, Sequential Function Chart, and Continuous Function Chart. PLCopen Motion function blocks are available. Other features include variants with an integrated Profibus® master, Ethernet connectivity, and OPC server.

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Magnetic Brakes

Danaher Motion (Wood Dale, IL) released the Thomson-Deltran Power-Off Magnetic Brake (PMB) series of power-off DC, spring-set, multifunctional brakes. Nine standard frame sizes from 30 to 120 are available. Torque range is 45 lb-in to 4,250 lb-in (5 to 48 Nm), in diameters from 3.30 to 11.89". Operating voltages of 24, 90, and 190 VDC are standard (other voltages are available on request). An adjustment collar allows brake torque to be varied, and the fully potted coils come under class “F” insulation.

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Hybrid Linear Actuator

Haydon Switch & Instrument (Waterbury, CT) released size 8 hybrid linear actuators with encoder feedback. Encoder resolutions range from 120 to 330 cycles per revolution, or 480 to 1,200 pulses per revolution; encoder operating temperatures are -10 to 85°C. The optical incremental encoder design is available with two-channel quadrature TTL squarewave outputs. The units are available in resolutions ranging from 0.00006 to 0.00157" per step, and deliver thrusts of up to 10 lbs.

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