Bearing Sensor

ABB (Zurich, Switzerland) introduced the ABB Ability™ smart sensor that enables health checks for bearings. The smart sensor technology provides an early indicator of potential problems by assessing the condition of bearings from vibration and temperature information. The sensor for mounted bearings uses algorithms to assess, manage, and ensure performance of components. The smart sensor mounts to the bearing and communicates wire-lessly via a smartphone or other device, enabling easy access to the health data of bearings in locations that are difficult or dangerous to reach.

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Explosion-Proof Motor

Larson Electronics (Kemp, TX) announced the EXP-MTR-1P-230-50HZ-0.5HP-3.6K-56 fractional explosion-proof motor for use in Class I, Divisions 1 and 2 and Class II, Divisions 1 and 2 work areas. It features a NEMA 56 motor frame and can be installed with industrial systems via an integrated mounting foot. The motor is thermally protected and operates with 230V AC single-phase 60Hz. The ½-HP motor offers 3.4 full-load amps and 2.5 amps of no-load current. This unit can generate 3,600 RPM and provides 0.751 lb. ft. of torque with 200% locked rotor torque and 280% breakdown torque. The motor is fully enclosed, fan-cooled, and features ambient temperature rating of 50 °C.

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Variable-Speed Drive

The GA800 variable speed drive from the Drives & Motion division of Yaskawa America (Waukegan, IL) controls traditional and emerging motor technologies through 600 HP in applications ranging from simple fans and pumps to high-performance test dynamometers requiring precise regulation. It also provides flexible network communications, embedded functional safety, and mobile device connectivity. The general-purpose AC drive features a high-resolution, multi-language display with setup wizards and datalogging; programming without main power through an embedded USB port; and an integrated brake transistor (up to 125 HP) for heavy braking. It is available in 240 VAC three-phase (1 to 150 HP) and 480 VAC three-phase (1 to 600 HP) models.

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High-Load Stage

Optimal Engineering Systems (Van Nuys, CA) introduced the AU200-170 × 170 low-profile, high-load, precision XY stage that measures 108 mm (2.252”) high with a footprint (including the motors) of 458.5 × 458.5 mm (18.032”). Linear travel of the X and Y axes is 170 × 170 mm (6.692”) and the resolution of each axis is 20 microns (non-microstep) or 1 micron (20 microsteps per step motor driver in use). Repeatability is 2 microns and the positional accuracy is 3 microns. The 4-mm-per-turn lead screws have 2 microns of backlash and the stages have preloaded V-groove and crossed roller bearings.

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Planetary Gearbox

GAM (Mount Prospect, IL) introduced the SPH Flange planetary gearbox based on high-precision helical gear technology. The helical gears are precision cut and ground for quiet and smooth torque transmission with a standard backlash rating of <3 arcmin for single stage ratios. For applications that require more precision, the gearbox can be assembled for further reduced backlash at <1 arcmin. The gearbox can be used when space is limited. The ISO 9409-compatible output flange allows for mounting of machine elements such as pinions, pulleys, or other adapters. To accommodate direct connection to machines, the gearbox features taper roller bearings set at a wide distance and a fully supported planet carrier for high-load-carrying capacity. The ring gear is machined directly into a single-piece steel housing for torsional rigidity. Offered in three frame sizes, it is rated for up to 450 Nm nominal and 675 Nm acceleration torque in the largest size.

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Power Controllers

American Control Electronics (South Beloit, IL) introduced PMB Series pulse-width modulation (PWM) controls. Using a 115 or 230 VAC power source, they are designed to run brushed DC motors up to 180 VDC. PWM technology creates a clean output voltage, which allows the motor to run at a cooler operating temperature at comparatively higher and lower speeds. The microprocessor-based controllers can be custom-programmed for OEM applications, including the ability to follow quadrature encoder feedback for speed or positioning control. The regenerative controls can reverse on-the-fly without any contacts on the motor armature. The user can regeneratively brake, decelerate, or coast the motor to a stop. The integrated dump circuitry eliminates the need for accessory cards and external relays in high-inertia applications.

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Motor Controls

The MDBL Series of configurable controls for brushless DC motors is available from Minarik Drives (South Beloit, IL). The drives control motors ranging from 90 to 280 VDC, up to 5 amps/1.5 HP, using either 115 VAC or 230 VAC line sources. Onboard trim pots allow operators to set minimum/maximum speeds, acceleration/deceleration rates, motoring and regening current limits, as well as proportional and integral feedback gains. An onboard microprocessor allows for custom programming for tasks such as changing the purpose of a jumper or trim pot, or programming an entire application-specific routine. The drives seamlessly integrate PLC-like functionality into operations, eliminating the need for a separate PLC or enhancing systems without PLCs. The controls are positioning-application capable, with feedback sampling rates of 16 Khz. Each drive is designed for feedback from 120° hall effect sensors. The drives are UL 618005-1 listed and NEMA 4X packages are available in both steel and plastic. They can convert 115 VAC input into 280 VDC output and feature diagnostic LEDs for power and status (e.g. undervoltage, overvoltage, short circuit/current trip, overheating warning/trip).

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Motor Controller

TDK Corporation (Freiburg, Germany) offers the Micronas HVC 4420F embedded motor controller that features flash memory to 64 KB and SRAM to 4 KB to drive small brush-type, stepper, or brushless motors. It is designed to provide diagnostics capability in the field of smart actuators and offers built-in diagnostic features. The controller is part of the Micronas high-voltage controller family (HVC) for smart actuators that combines an ARM® standard microcontroller core with a range of additional functions. Powered by a 32-bit CPU core (ARM® Cortex®-M3) with 64 kB flash memory, the controller contains timers/counters, interrupt controllers, multichannel ADC, SPI, and enhanced PWMs with diagnosis functions. Features include a LIN UART with a LIN 2.x transceiver as well as voltage regulators to connect the device directly to the automotive board net (5.4 V – 18 V). Several power management modes help reduce current consumption. Various integrated digital and analog circuit units — such as comparators with virtual star point reference, current scaling, and an embedded programmable gain amplifier — allow users to minimize the number of external components.

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Stepper Motor

The HX56-100 hazardous-location stepper motor from Applied Motion Products (Watsonville, CA) features ATEX and IECEx certifications for Class 1, Zone 1 locations; UL-Listed for Class 1, Division 1, Group C and D locations; and Type 4X and IP66 rated enclosure. It is suited for locations where flammable gases, vapors, or liquids are, or may be present in the air in quantities sufficient to produce explosive or ignitable mixtures. The motor is designed for use with the STAC6-Q-H stepper drive that is certified for hazardous locations. Microstepping ensures smooth, high-resolution positioning. The drive is capable of running stored programs and has sufficient input/output signals to connect to multiple external devices or sensors.

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Differential Transducers

NewTek Sensor Solutions (Pennsauken, NJ) offers spring-loaded LVDTs that provide accurate dimensional feedback for a variety of position measurement and quality assurance applications including go/no-go measurements, automotive part quality testing, roller position/product thickness control, TIR measurements, and material testing under stress. Designed with a stainless-steel probe assembly and ¾“-diameter hermetically sealed housing, the spring-loaded sensors operate in environments with dirt, water, vibration, and temperature ranges of -65 to 220 °F. AC- and DC-operated versions of gage heads are available in ranges from ±0.050” to ±2.00” (1.27 to 50 mm). With electronics built into a spring-loaded assembly, DC-operated units do not require external electronics. AC-operated configurations can withstand higher temperatures and provide a variety of analog or digital outputs when connected to an LVDT signal conditioner. Customized options include extended temperature ranges up to 400 °F (200 °C), mild radiation resistance to 30 MRad, air extend probes, and custom spring rates.

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Linear Amplifier

The XL4s linear amplifier from Aerotech (Pittsburgh, PA) is designed for closed-loop servo control of voice coil and single-phase motors, eliminating the non-linearities common with PWM amplifiers. The amplifier provides deterministic behavior, auto-identification, and easy software setup and features a multi-core, double-precision, floating-point DSP that controls the digital PID. All parameters are software-settable including control-loop gains and system safety functions. Features include an encoder interpolation feature, dedicated analog and digital I/O, fiber-optic interface, separate power connections for motor and control supply voltages, full-state feed-forward, 192-kHz servo rates, and look-ahead-based velocity control. The 192-kHz servo rate results in better tracking errors and part quality at high speeds in applications such as fast-tool servos, high-dynamic optical focusing axes, and high-speed pick-and-place machines. The amplifier can be panel-mounted in a machine enclosure, resulting in a smaller machine footprint and requiring less overall floor space.

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Drives

WEG CFW300 AC variable frequency drives from AutomationDirect (Cumming, GA) for three-phase induction motors are designed for motor speed control and other industrial control applications. The drives feature a compact size with contactor-style electrical connections (top in/ bottom out). Performance can be scaled to match the application by selecting WEG vector control (VVW) or scalar control (V/Hz). The drives include a built-in keypad and SoftPLC with WEG Programming Suite software for custom-tailored control schemes. Built-in I/O capabilities include four configurable (PNP or NPN) digital inputs, one 0.5 A/ 250 VAC relay output, and one 0-10 VDC/4-20 mA analog input. A variety of plug-in option modules for additional I/O and communications protocols can be added to extend capabilities. A remote keypad and flash memory module are also available.

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Connectors

ERNI (Richmond, VA) offers the SMC Series connector and cable assembly. The dual-row, small form, 1.27-mm (.050”) pitch connectors provide multiple connector configuration options. Supporting both board-to-board and wire-to-board applications in the same connector series, they are suited for wireless remote applications in rugged industrial environments. They are available in pin counts from 12 to 80 positions and mezzanine stack heights from 8.0 to 20.0 mm in a standard configuration. Additional stack heights are available from 20.0 mm to 40.0 mm when utilizing board-to-board adapters. Several board-to-board distances are also available in coplanar and orthogonal orientations. The connectors include a mezzanine board-to-board extender option that allows up to 40-mm separation in extended-height, parallel applications. A female IDC cable assembly supports the wire-to-board requirements with various pin count options.

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Voice Coil Motor

Moticont (Van Nuys, CA) introduced the GVCM-051-025-01 linear voice coil motor with high acceleration/deceleration, high speed, zero backlash, high repeatability, and a 0.5” (12.7 mm) stroke length. The linear actuator is a replacement for hydraulic and pneumatic linear actuators. The motor has a high force-to-size ratio with 5.3 lbs (23.5 N) continuous force and 16.7 lbs (74.4 N) of peak force at 10% duty cycle with a housing measuring 2 × 1” (50.8 × 25.4 mm). The 0.1572” (3.993 mm) diameter shaft has an internal thread, and the housing has threaded mounting holes on each end for integration into current and future applications. The brushless actuator with internal shaft and recirculating ball bearing is suited for medical devices, testing, sorting, assembly equipment, workholding and clamping, laser beam steering and filtering, optical focusing, and dynamic vibration absorption. It also can be ordered as a complete plug-and-play system including a position sensor and controller.

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Magnetic Encoder Modules

Encoder Products (Sagle, ID) announced options for the low-profile, 30-mm-diameter Model 30M and Model 30MT magnetic encoder modules that provide accurate incremental feedback, even in harsh operating conditions, with advanced sensing and signal processing technology. Any resolution from 1 to 1024 and 1 to 16 pole commutation is available. The modules combine a Hall-effect sensor, signal processing circuitry, and a small magnetic target that can be affixed to a rotating shaft via a supplied shaft adaptor or insert. With a wide sensor-to-magnet air gap and waveform symmetry and repeatability, the Model 30M tolerates shaft misalignment and is available with connector options of an 8-pin M12, 8-pin Molex, or 16-pin Molex. It comes with an 8-pin M12 connector and a threaded housing. Impervious to dust, dirt, and moisture, the modules feature a chemically inert, high-temperature nylon housing and non-contact magnetic sensing. They operate in temperatures from -40 to 12 °C and can be sealed to IP69K.

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Vacuum Lifter

Piab (Hingham, MA) introduced the piLIFT® SMART vacuum lifter with smart data features based on Internet connectivity. Sensing and monitoring movements and responding quickly to user intentions, the vacuum lifter will lift and weigh loads simultaneously and collect and log data, making process statistics and analyses immediately accessible to the user through the Web platform log-in. The handle enables right-and left-handed use and the hand guard enables gripping from the side and rotating objects. Other features include a minimized operating sound level and capacity to lift objects weighing 90 pounds.

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Motor Controller

The CL4-E motor controller from Nanotec (Feldkirchen, Germany) is suitable for both brushless DC motors and stepper motors and has a peak power of 1050 W. The rated current is 6 A additional heat sinks are not required. It can be controlled via CANopen and Modbus RTU or programmed for standalone operation and be controlled via digital and analog inputs. The controller is designed for field-oriented control by encoder, Hall sensors, or sensorless. With speed and acceleration feed-forward control, it offers additional safety for the tolerances of 48 V battery packs and power supplies with a 58 V operating voltage.

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Accelerometers

PCB Piezotronics (Depew, NY), a wholly owned subsidiary of MTS Systems Corporation, released two industrial, case-isolated, cryogenic ICP accelerometers designed for use in low-temperature applications. They are suited for liquefied natural gas (LNG) processing, industrial gas processing (argon, helium, hydrogen, nitrogen, and oxygen), pharmaceutical production (statin drugs, biotech products such as vaccines), and frozen food production/storage. The units feature specialized cryogenic circuitry and quartz shear sensing to promote survivability in extremely cold applications as well as low temperature coefficient of sensitivity to ensure accurate measurements throughout the operating temperature range. They are electrically case-isolated to prevent noise issues and ground loops without the added height or weight of an accessory isolation base and feature welded, hermetically sealed 316L stainless steel housings and rugged two-pin MIL connector for harsh environments.

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Ball Screw

Thomson Industries (Radford, VA) offers a ball screw with more than twice the load capacity of a standard ball screw. High-load ball screws are suited for demanding motion control applications such as injection molding, pressing, and large fabrication equipment. The ball screws can be used to replace roller screws or hydraulic systems in applications with axes that require accurate and safe movement of heavy loads such as large fabrication equipment, injection molding and metal fabrication machines, metal pressing and forming applications, lifting devices, and high-load actuators. They are available with up to 15-m screw lengths and with single or double nuts. They come in standard sizes up to 160 mm in diameter with up to 1,440 kN of dynamic load capacity. Preloading options are available as well as custom ball screws. They provide lead accuracy up to 12 μm/300 mm.

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Motor Drive

The Sinamics G120X from Siemens Corp. (Washington, DC) is a seamless drive designed for use in pump, fan, and compressor applications in industrial environments. It features a power range of 1–700 HP (0.75–630 kW) and can operate in a temperature range from -4 to +140 °F (-20 to +60 °C) with any standard motor, including synchronous reluctance motors. It has an integral DC choke and meets UL, NEMA, and EN/IEC standards. The drive offers up to 100 kA short-circuit current rating and integrates into existing applications. It enables motor cable lengths of up to 492 feet (150 m) with category C2 or C3 filter and up to 1,476 feet (450 m) without filter. The drive provides an automatic restart function after power failures and a multi-pump/staging operation mode allows users to control several pumps using one drive. A Class 3C3 coating enables use in harsh environments where the presence of corrosive gases is present.

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Motion Design Magazine

This article first appeared in the April, 2019 issue of Motion Design Magazine.

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