Corrosion-Resistant Valve

GF Piping Systems (Irvine, CA) introduced a corrosion-resistant pneumatic diaphragm valve for highly corrosive dosing and open/close applications. The Type 604/605 pneumatically actuated dosing valve is designed and tested to surpass two million lifecycles. The 1/2” (d20) size 604/605 valve is available in PVC, CPVC, PROGEF Standard PP, and SYGEF; in standard PVDF body materials with a wide variety of end connections; and custom assemblies. The valve is pressure-rated at 90 psi unidirectional with operating temperatures ranging from -4 to 284 °F, depending on body material. A threaded bonnet design eliminates both the need for metallic body bolts and re-torqueing after hot line shutdowns. Oversized pneumatic ports decrease cycle time to maintain accurate dosing with minimal overrun.

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Linear Slide Actuators

AutomationDirect (Cumming, GA) has added second-generation (Gen 2) linear motion slide actuators to its SureMotion line of motion control products. The self-contained Gen 2 Compact slide actuators are available with travel distances to 36” and travel speeds up to 20 inches per second, and they have an integral wire-way through the body and a more robust motor mount that fits both NEMA 17 and 23 motors. Gen 2 Value Line linear slide actuators are available with travel distances ranging from 6” to 24”, and add integral sensor mount grooves and a more robust motor mount. SureMotion twin round-shaft slide actuators are also available, and feature continuously supported round rail slide with ball screw actuation to provide precision linear motion.

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Caliper Brakes

Nexen Group (Vadnais Heights, MN) offers three models of BD (brute disk) caliper brakes: air actuated, spring actuated/air released, and spring actuated/hydraulically released. The brake design uses arms to provide higher clamping force. Torque ranges from 8,000 to 23,000 in-lbs., disc diameters span 12 to 24”, disc thickness is 0.50 to 1.00”, and maximum disc speed is 3200 RPM. The QD bushing is compatible with shaft sizes up to 3.875”. Actuators mount on either side of the brake, connections can be rotated 360° around the actuator axis, and all pivot points have life-lubricated bearings. Brake shoes are mounted with detent pins for quick replacement.

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3D Design Tool

SCHUNK (Morrisville, NC) offers the eGrip web-based 3D design tool that allows users to design and create gripper fingers that are customized to their part. Using eGrip, users can orient the part, choose the gripper model, and specify the finger material during the design process. Uploading the workpiece data as a STEP or STL file enables eGRIP to determine individual gripper fingers with optimal 3D contour. Once the design is completed, the fingers will be made by additive manufacturing and delivered in days. Material choices include polyamide 12, aluminum, and stainless steel. The external contour of the generated modules — consisting of gripper, top jaws, and workpiece — can be downloaded free of charge as an STL file and used for the construction of the system.

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Human Machine Interface

Mitsubishi Electric Automation (Vernon Hills, IL) introduced the GT2107 Wide Series human machine interface (HMI). The GT2107 is an interface that monitors and controls machine components with a graphical touchscreen that connects to equipment such as PLCs, VFDs, and servos. The HMI features a 7”-wide display with 800 × 480 resolution. The optional VNC server provides remote access to the HMI and connected equipment, allowing users to operate the system using tablets or personal computers to view data in real time. The GT2107 also offers predictive maintenance information, giving plant managers the opportunity to proactively plan and manage equipment maintenance.

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Synchronous Motor

The Sinochron® synchronous motors from ABM Drives (Loveland, OH) have anisotropic rotor geometry that provides a sinusoidal distribution of the magnetic flux, which eliminates cogging. Drive units are virtually loss-free in no-load operation. The motors operate without an encoder, and can replace a stepper motor in some applications. They are well suited for sensorless operation, and can offer an economical alternative to expensive servo drives. The profile of these drive units makes them work well with drive pumps and fans that operate continuously because no additional components are needed. The motors meet the requirements set by efficiency regulations for continuous-duty pumps and fans.

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Force/Torque Sensor

ATI Industrial Automation (Apex, NC) released the Axia80 force/torque sensor that measures all six components of force and torque. The monolithic instrumented transducer also features silicon strain gauges that reduce noise, enable high stiffness, and provide overload protection five to 20 times over the sensing range. The Axia80 is programmed with two different calibrations that the operator can switch between while the application is running. The default calibration allows for a large sensing range during high-speed moves or while applying high force. The smaller calibration suits more delicate processes that require higher resolution and accuracy. All the electronics are built into the transducer body, and the sensor connects directly to the robot controller. The Axia80 communicates through EtherCAT or Ethernet, and is well suited for robotic assembly, grinding, and polishing applications.

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Automated Guided Vehicle

Comau (Turin, Italy) introduced the Agile1500 modular, scalable, and reconfigurable AGV (Automated Guided Vehicle) platform. It can carry up to 1,500 kg with a maximum speed of 1.7 m/s. An integrated laser scanner stops the AGV upon detection of an obstacle along its route. The Agile1500 is a standard product that is also configurable, and can be fitted with application-specific accessories. It works with multiple navigation systems that use both natural landmarks (walls, objects, etc.) as well as predefined points (magnetic spot and magnetic tape). System management software handles transport orders, allocates vehicles, and monitors the entire AGV fleet. The Agile1500 can interface with other automation systems present in a factory.

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Stepper Motion Control Products

IDEC Corp. (Sunnyvale, CA) partnered with Advanced Micro Controls Inc. (AMCI) to develop a line of motion control stepper products. The AMCI by IDEC product line includes controllers, stepper motors, an integrated controller/drive, an integrated drive/stepper motor, and an integrated controller/drive/stepper motor. When combined with an IDEC FC6A programmable logic controller (PLC) and its embedded motion control macro instructions, these products can implement single- and multi-axis motion control for a range of industries and applications. Macro instructions embedded in the PLC WindLDR programming software can be configured with drag-and-drop commands to perform control of up to 12 axes.

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3D Positioning System

A 3D positioning system from Stafford Manufacturing Corp. (Wilmington, MA) simplifies the setup of cameras and other devices for research, laboratory, process, and packaging applications. The system consists of a group of mounting components, including a base that can securely attach to any flat surface, stepped and straight-through couplings, and precision shafting that can be adjusted and locked. A ball-end shaft and clamp mount accessory with an infinitely adjustable range of motion helps users move, tilt, and swivel to position and lock devices in space. The 3D Positioning System accepts 1/2”, 3/4”, or 1” shafts for stepped and straight-through couplings that can be inserted at 90° or parallel. The shafts accept the tilt-and-swivel mount or other clamps and mounts.

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Controller Board

Nippon Pulse (Radford, VA) released the PPCIe8443 controller board with PCI-Express bus interface. It utilizes an updated PCI-Express bus interface that can control up to 4 axes of coordinated motion, comes equipped with the company’s PCL6046 large-scale integration chip, and can generate high-speed pulses to control input-type servo and stepper motors. Complicated operations can be processed internally so axis control load on the CPU is reduced. The PPCIe board can handle up to four axes of linear interpolation, arbitrary two-axis circular interpolation, continuous interpolation, and linear and S-curve acceleration and deceleration. It also features 13 types of homing, velocity, and positioning override, and trigger output at a specified position with position comparison.

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Frameless Torque Motors

Allied Motion Technologies (Amherst, NY) added smaller frame sizes to its line of Megaflux™ frameless direct drive torque motors. Motors are now available in sizes ranging from 60 to 792 mm in outside diameter, with multiple stack lengths for each diameter. Megaflux kit motors (consisting of a matched rotor and stator pair) are well suited for OEM designs in which they are integrated directly into the driven axis. A large, open-center aperture provides free passage to route cables, light beams, or other machine mechanics. The Megaflux family offers continuous stall torque from 0.3 up to 2020 Nm (1490 lb-ft.), clear ID aperture from 36.2 up to 582 mm (22.9”), and 48-, 150-, and 300-VDC winding designs.

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Conveyor Bearings

CB-14 Series conveyor bearings from Kilian Manufacturing (Syracuse, NY) are designed to operate quietly and dependably in material-handling applications. The CB-14 bearing design combines two features that act together to reduce the metal-to-metal contact that is a common source of noise throughout a conveyor system. A nylon retainer separates and guides the balls, while a pressed-in nylon adapter eliminates any direct contact of bearing ring with conveyor shaft. An adapter flange also acts as a bearing shield to exclude contaminants. CB-14 bearings utilize a one-piece, precision machined outer ring to prevent any spreading or splitting under load. Hardened raceways improve anti-friction performance. The ball separator design permits a speed of 2,000 RPM.

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Linear Roller Bearings

’ IKO International (Parsippany, NJ) enhanced its standard MX series of linear roller bearings with special features for environments that are sensitive to metal chips, dust, and other contaminants. A dust-protective C-Wiper can be mounted to the outside of the end seal, ensuring operation in environments where metal chips are spattering. After 1,000 km of operation, the C-Wiper prevented foreign substances from entering the slide unit with no damage to the end seal. The roller bearings utilize rows of cylindrical rollers to provide a greater contact area than do slides that use steel balls. They also maintain high rigidity in every direction. Load capacities are up to 674 kN for dynamic loads and 1,300 kN for static loads. Mounting dimensions are compatible with MH and LWH ball type series.

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Motion Design Magazine

This article first appeared in the December, 2017 issue of Motion Design Magazine.

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