White Paper: Mechanical & Fluid Systems

Evaluating Performance Modes In Precision Ground Ball Screws

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For a vast array of industrial applications including milling-machine tables, robotics, medical equipment, and semiconductor manufacture, ball screws deliver extremely accurate and durable linear motion solutions. They provide very high rigidity, smooth and near-silent operation, accuracy grades from C0 to C7, and a compact form factor for their high load capacities. They consist of a screw shaft, ball nut, recirculating system, and ball rolling elements. All of these components are required to maintain continuous ball movement within the ball screw.

A Superior Linear Motion Solution

Ball screws can withstand a higher load with greater precision than pneumatic systems, and provide precision linear motion without the complications of compressed air or gas. They also eschew the tubing, fittings, and control valves that air actuators do, and don’t suffer potential pressure losses which can lower overall efficiency. Compared to rack and pinion systems, ball screws have significantly reduced backlash, with higher accuracy and precision. Ball screw motors are stationary and do not move with the payload, which reduces the amount of moving mass. Ball screws deliver their greater precision without the need for the tanks, fluids, filters and piping of hydraulic systems, and are generally less costly and more energy efficient. They are also capable of heavier load capacities than linear motors, do not require a linear encoder feedback unit to work properly, and can be operated from a variety of motor types including AC/DC, stepper, and servo.

Further Information

To learn more about the design and engineering advantages of precision-ground ball screws for accurate and dependable linear motion, download the NSK Technical Insight.

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