Drive/Timing Belts

AutomationDirect (Cumming, GA) released SureMotion® 5M and 8M (5-mm and 8-mm pitch) high-torque synchronous drive/timing belts with a curvilinear HTD® (High Torque Drive) tooth profile that provides a larger pulley contact area. The chloroprene belt body is heat- and ozone-resistant with a high tooth shear resistance. Fiberglass tensile cord provides stability and flexibility and a nylon tooth cover provides wear resistance and increased power capacity. Belt operating temperature range is -13 to +185 °F (-25 to +85°C). Belt widths from 9 to 30 mm and circumferences from 180 to 4,400 mm are available.

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WITTENSTEIN North America (Bartlett, IL) launched cynapse sensor technology designed as a self-monitoring gearbox with built-in tracking of vibration, temperature, acceleration, and mounting position of the gearbox. The servo gearbox with cynapse sensor technology consists of a digital identification plate that contains the product’s unique component ID and embedded sensor technology that monitors pre-defined values and thresholds and sends the information to the IO-LINK Master where it can be shared to the plc IPC gateway cloud. Performance data is stored throughout the component’s lifecycle. A built-in anomaly detector scans the aggregated data for trends or abnormalities and notifies the control system of potential issues.

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Servo Motors

MDX integrated servo motors from Applied Motion Products (Watsonville, CA) are UL-recognized for electrical safety. The motors combine the low-inertia servo motor with an onboard drive and controller. There are no cables required to connect the servo drive to the motor because the servo drive is integrated into the motor housing. There are ten models available that provide 200 or 400 Watts continuous rated output power and up to 26.6 in-lb (3.0 N-m) peak torque. Multiple communications options include Ethernet, RS-485, and CANopen. All models feature dual-port communications for daisy-chain network connections. All motors feature stored program execution via the Q Programming language for generating motion, I/O control, and machine sequencing as well as math functions that enable users to create complex motion profiles and control algorithms. IP65 and IP20 environmental ratings are available.

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MEMS Accelerometers

Silicon Designs (Kirkland, WA) announced the Model 2276 Series MEMS capacitive accelerometers for zero- to medium-frequency industrial vibration monitoring and robotics instrumentation applications.

Available in eight standard ranges from ±2 g to ±400 g, the single-axis series combines an integrated, nitrogen-damped, fully calibrated MEMS capacitive accelerometer chip and high-drive, low-impedance buffering in an epoxy-sealed, rugged, anodized aluminum housing.

The devices withstand shock inputs of up to 5000 g and standard operating temperature ranges from -55 to +125 °C. They respond to both DC and AC acceleration, with choice of two analog ±4 V (differential) or 0.5 to 4.5 V (single-ended) outputs.

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Caged Ball Guides

The Type SPR/SPS caged ball guides from THK (Schaumburg, IL) incorporate ultra-low waving and ultra-high rigidity. Features include additional raceway grooves and ultra-long blocks. With eight small-diameter balls, the guides reduce the load on the balls by 50% and enable ultra-low waving on a nanoscopic scale. The increased number of small-diameter load-bearing balls stabilizes support and decreases compression when under a load. The Radial Type SPR and the 4-Way Equal Load Type SPS can bear loads in the radial, reverse-radial, and horizontal directions. The Type SPR is effective on radial loads when force is applied perpendicular to the shaft. The Type SPS positions each ball at a contact angle of 45° and bears loads from all directions. It can be used horizontally and upside down. Rail lengths for both types range from 160 to 3,090 mm.

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Captive Linear Actuators

Nanotec (Feldkirchen, Germany) offers the LGA35 captive linear actuators with a compact linear guide and a flange size of 35 mm. The design enables thrust forces of up to 240 N, depending on the thread pitch. Two pitches are available as standard: 0.61 mm and 4.88 mm. The actuators come with stroke lengths of 19.05 mm and 36.1 mm. For customized designs, nine additional thread pitches up to 9.75 mm and stroke lengths of up to 63.5 mm are available. Optionally, they can be ordered with an encoder. When combined with motor controllers, the actuators can be controlled via Fieldbus, clock and direction, or analog/digital inputs. If used with an encoder, the driving force can be controlled as well.

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Robot Cell

The 3DQI (3D quality inspection) robot cell from ABB (Zurich, Switzerland) eliminates the need for manual inspection and provides accuracy to less than 100 micrometers.

It is designed for offline testing stations and can be customized or expanded for changing needs.

Using a single 3D white light optical sensor to scan millions of 3D points per shot, a digital model of the part being inspected can be created that is compared to an original CAD drawing.

The optical sensor can be carried by any robot with a handling capacity greater than 20 kg and is compatible with a range of robots, tracks, and rotary tables.

The system provides comprehensive data analysis processed in real time for traceability.

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Mobile Robot

The HD-1500 mobile robot from Omron Automation Americas (Hoffman Estates, IL) can handle bulky objects weighing up to 1,500 kg. The robot automatically calculates the best route for material transportation while navigating safely around people and obstacles without requiring magnetic floor tapes or other guides. Fleet Manager software controls up to 100 mobile robots of different sizes, configurations, and payload capacities. The robot features a battery that charges in 36 minutes, 360° safety scanning lasers for simultaneous localization and safety functionality, navigation using adaptive safety zones with LiDAR technology, and an onboard PLC.

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Laser Distance Sensor

Micro-Epsilon (Raleigh, NC) released the optoNCDT ILR1030-8/LC1 time-of-flight laser sensor for robot positioning. The sensor is mounted on the robot tool and measurements are performed at a distance of approximately 600 to 700 mm from the workpiece’s A and B pillars at a measuring rate of 100 Hz. The sensors emit short laser pulses so that when the workpiece arrives on a belt, the laser light first hits the A pillar and is reflected back to the sensor’s optics. The measuring system is set up so that the next time it hits the B pillar, it sends an analog output signal of 4 to 20 mA to the PLC, which causes the line to stop, correctly positioning the workpiece and activating the gripper by the PLC. The gripper guides the workpiece between the A and B pillars to its intended installation position.

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Slide Guides

NB Corp. of America (Hanover Park, IL) introduced SGL slide guides that are high-rigidity, high-load-capacity linear bearings with low friction and non-stick or slip mechanisms. The guides range from 160 to 3,000-mm lengths. Six types of blocks are available, depending on the mounting space and desired mounting method. The number of tracking grooves for ball elements or rows of rollers varies by type of glide and width ranges. Both retained and non-retained ball elements are available.

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ALIO Industries (Arvada, CO) announced the Angulares™ Hybrid Hexapod® with a 60-degree tip/tilt travel.

It features crossed roller bearing guides, optical incremental or absolute encoder feedback on all axes, linear motor and/or servo ball screw drives, unlimited programmable tool center point locations and coordinate offsets, and zero backlash on all axes.

It is capable of unlimited XY travel and Z travel for 62 mm that can be increased to 208 mm using other tripod models.

Other features include tip/tilt travel with continuous 360-degree Theta-Z, XYZ bidirectional repeatability of less than 0.6 arc-seconds, velocity up to 100 mm/second XY and Z, and less than 10 nanometers linear and 0.1 arc-seconds angular minimum incremental motion.

Individual axes can be customized to provide XY travel ranges from millimeters to virtually unlimited ranges while maintaining nanometer levels of precision.

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Rotary Actuator

SMAC (Carlsbad, CA) offers the LBR40 slim, stackable, linear rotary actuator with a SMAC HT35 direct drive brushless motor. Encoder resolutions are available from 5 microns to 1 um for flexibility on position control. IP67 protection is available as well as a built-in controller with popular communications protocols. The actuator provides high linear force and rotary torque, and is designed for capping, thread inspection, and smart screwdriving applications.

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PCB Piezotronics (Depew, NY) released the Model 630A91 triaxial ICP accelerometer with a top exit M12 connector. It was developed for space-constrained installations that require an ICP accelerometer with a vertical run of cable but do not have room for a 90° turn from a straight connector.

Features include the ability to take three simultaneous vibration measurements and withstand harsh environments with case-isolated housing of stainless steel and a rugged four-pin M12 connector.

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Position Sensors

TE Connectivity (Berwyn, PA) offers LVDT position sensors optimized for hydraulic valves and actuators. The sensors can measure spool position within one-thousandth of an inch and infinite resolution. They are hermetically sealed, can be mounted inside valves, and are capable of withstanding high pressure (up to 10,000 psi) and harsh exposure such as hydraulic fluid. They feature stroke lengths as low as +0.005" and can be adapted to work in valve applications that currently do not use LVDTs due to space constraints. Models are available with various size and stroke length, pressure range, mounting preference, output, and electrical connections. AC or DC units are available.

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