Motion Control System

Elmo Motion Control (Nashua, NH) introduced Quartet, an ultra-small 4-axis motion control system with multi-axis control, integrated 4 × 5 kW servo drives, and safety and networking functionality. The system is operated by a simple programming environment made for fast implementations of any 4-axis application. The 4-axis module can operate as a standalone unit as well as a standard EtherCAT node within a network. The full multi-axis control solution is suited for space-restricted applications and provides minimal heat dissipation and less wiring and cabling. The module can be mounted within the system as an integral part and not in a traditional external cabinet.

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Voice Coil Motor

Moticont (Van Nuys, CA) released the GVCM-095-089-03 linear voice coil motor (also known as linear DC motor) that features a continuous force of 63.9 lbs. (284.1 N) and 202.0 lbs. (898.4 N) of peak force at a 10% duty cycle. Guided by a plain bearing that can allow side loads up to 3 lb. (13.5 N), the 0.236” (6.0 mm) diameter shaft with an internal thread has a stroke length of 0.5” (12.7 mm). The low-inertia brushless motor also features high acceleration/deceleration, zero backlash, high repeatability, and a high force-to-size in either direction. The motor has threaded mounting holes in the housing and coil ends for integration into new and existing applications.

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Dual Encoders

Harmonic Drive (Peabody, MA) released Dual Absolute encoder versions of the FHA-C mini actuator that feature BiSS-C bi-directional communication for both encoders. The dual absolute encoders offer single-turn, absolute position at the output without the need for battery backup. Panel mount connectors come standard and four exit options are available. The actuators combine a Harmonic Drive gear component with a pancake brushless servomotor. A single-turn, 14-bit, gear output encoder has been integrated along with a single-turn, 14-bit, motor input encoder, providing a true absolute encoder that does not require a battery within 360° of rotation of the output.

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Rotary Stages

ALIO Industries (Arvada, CO) introduced TRUE NANO® mechanical rotary stages with crossed roller bearings for improved stiffness for offset loads and rotational precision. Integrated with servo torque frameless motors, the stages can handle applications with extreme mass and acceleration while maintaining nanometer-level precision. Standard stages have 0.2 arc-second repeatability using supplied motion controllers. Standard mechanical crossed roller bearings are rated at 13 to 20 microns of radial and axial run-out, with optional runouts of certain models below 5 microns. The family consists of multiple motor sizes to meet duty cycles as well as mass and acceleration needs from 80 to 300 mm in diameter. Vacuum rotary union options are available on the inner diameter for mounting a vacuum chuck.

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Miki Pulley (Plymouth, MN) offers SFM couplings for high-speed power transmission applications up to 24,000 rpm where high torque and precision alignment are critical. Available in 10 sizes, the couplings transmit torque by connecting two shafts while damping system vibrations and accommodating misalignment. The couplings have a disk spring design that provides high torsional rigidity and axial flexibility. The high-response, zero-backlash design features a high torque-to-weight ratio. The couplings have a torque rating from 60 N•m to 600 N•8, depending on model size. Torsional stiffness ranges from 104,000 Nm/rad to 970,000 Nm/rad with parallel misalignment of 0.02 mm.

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Collaborative Robot

Universal Robots (Ann Arbor, MI) offers the UR16e collaborative robot with a 16-kg (35-lb) payload capability. It combines the high payload with a reach of 900 mm and pose repeatability of 0.05 mm for automating tasks such as heavy-duty material handling, part handling, palletizing, and machine tending. The robot can be unpacked, mounted, and programmed to perform a task in less than an hour. It includes built-in force sensing, 17 configurable safety functions including customizable stopping time and stopping distance, and an intuitive programming flow. It meets compliance regulations and safety standards for unobstructed human-robot collaboration including EN ISO 13849-1, PLd, Category 3, and full EN ISO 10218-1.

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Brushless DC Motors

Haydon Kerk Pittman (Harleysville, PA) announced the EC042B IDEA® Motor Series of brushless DC motors with CANopen communication-enhancing motion control capabilities. The motors provide a pre-engineered, factory-configured, and tested servo system. A graphical user interface provides an intuitive programming environment to develop, save, and debug complex motion sequences. Since the connections between the drive and motor are made internally, users can connect power, optional I/O connections, and communications and the motor is ready to operate. The system integrates a brushless servo motor with an IDEA® Drive controller and CANopen communications ports to synchronize motion among multiple motors. The motors are available in three lengths, each with optional factory-configurable gearboxes.

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Motion Design Magazine

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

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