Modular Robot Platform

The Modular Gantry Robot platform

Festo (Islandia, NY) has introduced the Modular Gantry Robot platform for laboratory-based automated liquid handling. Modular gantries feature an open-source motion and fluidic API with Python, Java, and .NET/C# drivers. Utilizing a library of common drivers reduces the learning curve and enables integrators to easily develop an optimized control strategy for their machine. The flexibility and ability to customize eliminates the need for OEMs to purchase a generic machine and then adapt their test or assay solution onto it. The Modular Gantry Robot platform follows a Lego-like building block strategy of hundreds of interoperable components designed to be assembled with simple hand tools. Other modules can include dispense head, pipettes, capper/decapper, and bar code reader.

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Safe Monitoring Crane Systems

The high-performance optoNCDT ILR2250 laser distance sensors are used wherever large measuring ranges and high accuracy are required.

To achieve a fast, safe and efficient material flow, automated crane systems must be controlled reliably and extremely precisely. For reliable monitoring of crane positions Micro-Epsilon (Ortenburg, Germany) offers the optoNCDT ILR2250 laser distance sensors. Two sensors are positioned at one end of the main girder of an overhead crane and measure to millimeter accuracy on a white target board. The first sensor detects distance changes of the main girder in the range of 0.1 to 100 m in x-direction. The second sensor continuously measures the movements of the trolley between 0.1 and 25 m in the y-direction. The high-performance optoNCDT ILR2250 laser distance sensors are used wherever large measuring ranges and high accuracy are required.

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Safety Integrated Controller

ReeR MOSAIC safety controller components

AutomationDirect (Cumming, GA) has added new ReeR MOSAIC safety controller components for expanded capability. The Reer MOSAIC (MOdular SAfety Integrated Controller) makes it easy to manage safety systems and sensors. It is modular, expandable, and configurable for managing all safety functions of a single machine or an entire plant. The new MOSAIC-MV series speed monitoring expansion modules are an excellent addition that allow speed monitoring of rotating machinery via proximity sensors or TTL, HTL, and SIN/COS encoder inputs.

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Comprehensive Control

The OmniControl unit

Pleiffer Vacuum, Inc. (Nashua, NH) has introduced the OmniControl unit that allows the comprehensive control of a complete vacuum system using just one device. It combines the control of the total pressure with the control of the vacuum pumps. The unit communicates with products that support the Pfeiffer Vacuum RS-485 protocol (e.g. HiPace, HiScroll, HiLobe, MVP and DigiLine). This makes it possible to exchange and process data between various Pfeiffer Vacuum products without any difficulty and without having to invest in additional devices. The 3.5" touch screen with an intuitive user interface ensures easy and convenient control of the vacuum system.

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Automated Mobile Robots

New AMRs from Evocortex

The autonomous mobile robots (AMR) from Evocortex (Nuremberg, Germany) require absolutely no preinstalled guidance system to determine their location and find the right way. They orient themselves simply using the irregularities in the hall floor. Such irregularities can be found even on typical smooth concrete floors and are registered by the robot’s high-resolution camera. The camera is located on the underside of the vehicle, captures an area of 10 × 10 centimeters and uses the image data to produce the equivalent of a fingerprint of the hall floor. Behind this ingenious system is the self-developed Localization Module (ELM) from Evocortex. The AMRs can optionally be equipped with additional LIDAR sensors on one or two fronts. These scan the room in the direction of travel and detect obstacles — including those that are moving, such as people who cross the travel path.

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Motion Smoothing

The Regressive Auto-Spline (RAS)

Teknic’s (Rochester, NY) Regressive Auto-Spline (RAS) is available in Teknic’s ClearPath integrated servos. RAS goes beyond traditional motion smoothing algorithms such as S-curving or cosine smoothing by limiting the jerk and the jerk-derivative, resulting in incredibly smooth motion profiles. It can be configured with just a mouse click. Smoother acceleration profiles and reduced vibration mean less wear on the mechanics, longer component life, and lower audible noise. The RAS is available in every ClearPath integrated servo, which are compatible with a wide range of controllers including PLCs, microcontrollers, Windows, or Linux P.

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Ethernet IO Monitoring

The TCW241 Ethernet IO Module

Teracom (Ruse, Bulgaria) announced the availability of the affordable and easy to integrate TCW241 Ethernet IO Module for a wide variety of ethernet IO monitoring and control applications. Supporting Modbus TCP/IP connectivity, the device has four digital inputs, four analog inputs, and four relays. Its 1-Wire interface supports up to eight 1-Wire sensors (with 16 parameters) for measuring temperature, humidity, carbon dioxide, AC or DC current, etc. The relays of the Ethernet IO module can be activated either remotely or locally. So-called remote activation includes a friendly WEB interface or M2M protocols. The local activation is possible from a schedule, the status of a single parameter, or by custom-made functions. The function can include up to four parameters. For advanced relay scheduling, the module includes a real-time clock for time server synchronization.

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Edge Computers

The series includes the GP-3000 and GM-1000.

The Cincoze (Taipei, Taiwan) GOLD series is a range of GPU computers designed from the ground up to meet the needs of large-scale image processing, machine vision, and machine learning applications in AIoT. The series includes the GP-3000 and GM-1000, which are selectable according to application requirements like size, performance, I/O, functionality, and future upgradeability. The GP-3000 series is a GPU edge computer that supports 720W total system power. The GP-3000 series supports 720W total system power.

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Linear Position Sensor

The LR-19 series position sensors

Alliance Sensors Group, a division of Harold G. Schaevitz Industries (Bloomfield Hills, MI), offers the LR-19 series LVIT (Linear Variable Inductance Transducer) position sensors that are contactless devices designed for factory automation and a variety of industrial and commercial applications. A compact design with superior performance, and excellent stroke-to-length ratio, the LR-19 sensors are ideal for industrial testing, laboratories, and OEM applications. LR-19 sensors are offered in 6 full scale ranges from (1 to 8 inches) 25 to 200 mm. Operating from a variety of DC voltages, these sensors offer a choice of four analog outputs and all include ASG’s proprietary SenSet™ field recalibration feature.

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Asynchronous Motors

A new motor from NORD

NORD’s (Waunakee, WI) newly redesigned 100 frame motors are the first step in updating their asynchronous motor portfolio with an optimized electrical, mechanical, and visual design. The new 3 HP and 4 HP motors offer a simplified assembly including the elimination of a copper rotor as the motors produce the same energy efficiency without it. The exterior of the motor has new curved cooling fins that have been adapted in depth and shape. These fins curve around the terminal box and the motor to enhance airflow and optimize cooling. Sharp edges and corners have been removed from the terminal box to smooth the design and provide easier maintenance. Additionally, curved feet on the new design give the motor greater strength, stability, and a streamlined appearance. The fan cover has also received an updated radial design and the screws of the hood have been rotated by 45 degrees, making them accessible in case a variable frequency drive is installed.

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Linear Rails

An upgraded Telerace linear rail

Rollon (Hackettstown, NJ) has upgraded its Telerace family of linear rails to help designers simplify projects and enhance the efficiency of automated systems. Two Telerace families of cold-drawn steel rails now feature induction hardened and ground raceways along with double-row ball bearings for greater load handling capability, longer life and reduced maintenance requirements. The newly enhanced rail versions carry a “Plus” designation, provide full extension. The TLQ version has adjustable sliders that allow users to set the stroke length/load capacity ratio by up to ±20 percent. The TLR version manages misalignment errors of up to ±2.7 degrees and compensates for dimensional difference between the structure and a drawer with tolerance of up to 0.5 millimeter.

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Electronic Actuator

The Opto Electronic Actuator (OEA)

ITT Aerospace Controls (Valencia, CA), a subsidiary of ITT Inc., has announced the patented Opto Electronic Actuator (OEA) that uses optical, non-contact, position sensing with solid state switching and incorporates an electrically isolated output shaft. The Opto-electronic switches and a solidstate H-bridge motor drive replace the older electromechanical position sensing and motor drives (relays and micro-switches) used in other typical actuator designs. The actuator’s isolated output shaft eliminates the possibility of electrical energy being passed through the output shaft and creating a safety hazard.

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Split Hydraulic Flanges

The SHF Series Split Hydraulic Flange Plugs

MOCAP (Park Hills, MO) has added SHF Series Split Hydraulic Flange Plugs to its product line. These plugs are designed for use on SAE 3000 lb., four-bolt split hydraulic flanges, allowing for maximum flexibility. Designed to protect the port, flange surface and bolt holes from damage and debris during transit, handling and storage, our SHF series Split Hydraulic Flange Plugs are easy to install and remove. The SHF Series parts are molded in red LDPE plastic to fit 3/4-12 thru 2-1/2-40 Nominal Flange sizes.

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Powered Roller Conveyors

A Powered Roller Conveyor

Robotunits (Cranbury, NJ) has launched its Powered Roller Conveyor family of 24-V components designed to make it quick and easy for plant managers and control engineers to configure and build a complete transport system. Fast turnover and aggressive production demands in today’s industrial manufacturing and material handling operations prohibit time loss for system teardown and assembly whenever production needs change. Powered Roller Conveyors solve this problem because the individual components and production zones feature a modular design and ready-to-use controllers to allow maximum flexibility for present and future system needs. Providing precise and efficient transport of containers, totes and boxes, the Powered Roller Conveyor product range consists of straight and curved powered roller sections, lift stations, 90-degree transfer units and turntables.

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