Products

EX1200-1538 Multifunction I/O Card

VTI Instruments Corp., Irvine, CA, has released the EX1200-1538 multifunction I/O card that delivers eight channels of independent 1-MHz frequency/32-bit counter inputs, 16 channels of isolated digital I/O, and two channels of isolated analog output (DAC) in a single instrument. The instrument is suited for electronic functional test (ATE) and data acquisition (DAQ) applications, including precision frequency and counter/timer measurements in ATE systems, motion or position measurements from rotating shafts, and monitoring the speed of motors or turbines. It is used in industrial control applications such as relay actuation, speed control, and simulation requiring protection against high common mode and transient voltages. Time and frequency domain measurement accuracy is obtained with electronic counter implementation. The instrument can directly measure frequency, totalize counts, RPM, and quadrature input signals. The isolated digital I/O and DAC output channels provide the ability to directly measure and control a range of industrial systems, and can be combined to achieve expanded voltage and current levels.

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2010 Product of the Year Winners

The 16th annual NASA Tech Briefs’ Readers’ Choice Products of the Year have been chosen. Thanks to all of our readers who voted. Your winners are:

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Multi-Axis Servo Drive

Galil Motion Control (Rocklin, CA) has announced the AMP- 43240 4-axis servo drive that provides up to 750W per axis. It resides inside the DMC-4040 or DMC-4143 4-axis motion controller enclosure. The packaging of the multi-axis drives with the motion controller is designed to save space and wiring. The drive contains four transconductance PWM amplifiers for driving brushless servo motors at 20-80 VDC. Each amplifier drives motors operating up to 10A continuous, or 20A peak, per axis. The gain settings of the amplifier are user-programmable at 0.5, 1.0, and 2.0 Amp/Volt. The switching frequency is 24 kHz. The amplifier offers protection for over-voltage, under-voltage, over-current, short-circuit and over-temperature. A shunt regulator option is available.

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Motor-Control Module

STMicroelectronics (Geneva, Switzerland), has announced the SPIMD20 motor-control module that mounts directly on the motor, in addition to providing connection via industrial Ethernet. The unit can drive brushless 3-phase motors up to 2kW, and incorporates semiconductor technologies, including 1200V/40A IGBT power switches and the TD352 gate driver. Two STM32 microcontrollers provide a processing engine for motor control and networking functions. A real-time communication interface supporting protocols such as EtherCAT® and CANopen® DS402 is provided. Basic firmware supporting network connectivity and featuring PWM driving, current loop, and speed-loop execution synchronized to the Fieldbus is also available.

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DC Gear Motors

Nidec Copal (USA) Corp. (Torrance, CA) has introduced a RoHS family of four 12-mm miniature DC gear motors that develop high shaft torque ranging from 0.28 oz-in to 6.94 oz-in. Rated shaft speeds range from 1400 rpm to 40 rpm. The motor’s axial length is 1.023". Input voltage levels range from 4.5 to 6.0 VDC. Rated current levels do not exceed 250 milliamps. Operating temperature ranges from 30 to 70 °C. They weigh less than 0.35 ounces.

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Accelerometer

Dytran Instruments (Chatsworth, CA) has introduced the model 3091A, an IEPE accelerometer. It is offered with a range of 500g, 100 mV/g sensitivity, and an upper frequency response of 1,000 Hz (±5%). As an IEPE sensor, the accelerometer features built-in electronics, eliminating the need for an external charge amplifier and converter. Design of the device features a quartz sensing element operating in shear mode and packaged in a rugged stainless steel housing with a radial 3-pin “Mighty Mouse” connector. The unit’s sensor element is incorporated directly into the mounting bracket, eliminating costs associated with separate mounting brackets. The unit is hermetically sealed for use in dirty and high-humidity environments, and is case-isolated to avoid EMI/ground loop interference. It is suitable for high-frequency aircraft/airframe vibration measurements, Rotor Track and Balance (RTB), and transmission vibration measurements.

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Planetary Gearheads

A series of RTX precision planetary gearheads from Sterling Instrument (New Hyde Park, NY) features high-torque design and are offered in standard NEMA sizes 60 and 90. These 36 gearheads, identified as the S9160AMRTX and the S9190AMRTX Series, feature single, double, and triple gear stage configurations; optimized gear geometry; high torsional stiffness; captive, bearing-supported input pinion; and are sealed to extend service life. Each of the two NEMA sizes are offered in gear ratios ranging from 4:1 to 700:1. Their maximum input speed is 6500 rpm. Their single-stage, double-stage, and triple-stage minimum efficiencies are 95%, 90%, and 85%, respectively. Operating temperatures range from -40 °C to +121 °C. The housings are made of stainless steel, with anodized aluminum mounting flanges. The output shafts are made of stainless steel, and the gears are made of alloy and stainless steel.

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Speed Controller

The C100A Variable Speed Controller from Fluid Metering (Syosset, NY) provides a control interface for the company’s Variable Speed Pumps. The C100A features both manual speed adjustment using a front-panelmounted rotary dial, as well as electronic speed control via a 4-20 mA signal from an external source.

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Control Module

The ACOPOSmicro from B&R Industrial Automation Corp. (Roswell, GA) offers support for two servo motors, allowing users to integrate different drive types. The architecture enables changeover from a stepper to a servo motor, and vice versa. It also supports up to two axes with performance levels of 500W each on one module. The device requires a base surface of less than 50 cm2 per axis. The devices can be used in a nominal voltage range from 18 VDC to 80 VDC for low-power applications. The power supply module with a network connection offers options for machine and system diagnostics. The servo version has a 24 VDC output that can be used to drive external brakes. Additional optional modules allow users to adapt to custom requirements.

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Linear Stage and Driver

Newport Corp. (Irvine, CA) offers the CONEX-AGP controller preconfigured with an Agilis™ AG-LS25-27P linear stage that includes a miniature, built-in, direct-read linear encoder. The stage combines a piezo motor linear stage with the architecture of the CONEX controller family. The controller delivers submicron, bidirectional repeatability of 0.3 μm, making it suitable for applications in confined spaces that require integrated, single-axis control. The linear stage is capable of 27-mm travel and 0.2-μm metal-insulator-metal (MIM).

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