August 07, 2018 Volume 14 Issue 29

Motion Control News & Products

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New planetary BLDC gearmotors: High torque and compact design

Bodine Electric Company introduces the new type 22B4-60P planetary gearmotor. This integral gearmotor combines Bodine's high-performance type 22B brushless DC motor with the new 60P (60-mm) planetary gearhead. It is ideal for applications that require higher torque than conventional helical/spur gearheads of a similar size can provide, and where a very low backlash gearhead is not required. Typical applications include conveyors, pumps, packaging, industrial automation, and a wide range of solar- or battery-powered equipment.
Learn more.


Compact brushless DC servo motor with integrated controller

Nanotec has developed the compact PD2-C-IP, a brushless DC servo motor with integrated controller and 42-mm flange size for use in harsh environmental conditions (class IP65). The PD2-C-IP is available as a brushless DC motor, with an operating voltage of 12 V to 48 V and a rated power of 105 W, and as a stepper motor with a nominal torque up to 0.5 Nm. Due to the field-oriented control based on an integrated encoder, both motors are controlled in the same way and differ only in their working point. Each motor is available in a USB or CANopen version. They offer effective and economical drive solutions when high precision and maximum benefit are required.
Click here to learn more.


DriveWare 7.4.2 released with stepper motor support

DriveWare is ADVANCED Motion Controls' no-cost software tool that allows users to set drive limits, tune the control loops, configure various types of feedback, auto-commutate, analyze signals over a built-in multi-channel oscilloscope, and more. Because of its powerful capabilities and user-friendly interface, DriveWare is the best way to commission and configure the company's DigiFlex Performance series drives. The biggest update to DriveWare 7.4.2 is the expanded support for stepper motors -- making it easy to configure closed-loop steppers while streamlined algorithms make autocommutation 75% faster. DigiFlex Performance servo drives can operate two-phase and three-phase steppers in addition to rotary and linear permanent magnet, brushed, and brushless servo motors.
Click here to learn more.


Plug-and-play motion system in a box

Rollon Corp. has launched Motion Box, a new pre-engineered Cartesian robot system designed to deliver users six different motion profiles that can be set up and running in a couple of hours. Motion Box covers everything from the human-machine interface (HMI) to the output of reliable motion. Even the cable management is included. The initial system setup is already complete, so end users can get parts moving in a reliable and repeatable manner. Motion Box incorporates the Q-Motion Controller from Mitsubishi Electric, which features four-axis motion control, energy-efficient drivers, integrated I/O and network access, and a clean, efficient HMI setup.
Learn more.


High-torque rotary voice coil actuators

H2W Technologies has developed several high-torque rotary voice coil actuators, otherwise known as a limited angle torque motors (LATs). The model TWR-015-346-2RC was designed to allow for a low moving mass (68 grams per coil) and inertia, as well as dual independent coils to allow for two independent motion profiles or couple the coils together to double the torque output. This rotary voice coil actuator can generate a continuous torque of 185 in.-oz (1.29 Nm) and a peak torque of 555 in.-oz (3.88 Nm) at a duty cycle of 10% (i.e., 1 sec on and 9 sec off) in each coil on a 4-in. (102-mm) rotation arm. By coupling the coils, the continuous torque doubles. Applications include driving a gimbal axis in scanning applications and providing stabilizing torques for image stabilization.
Click here to learn more.


Linear actuators for medical applications

SKF Ecomag linear actuators from SKF Motion Technologies enable safe and precise power-driven movement and positioning of procedure tables and chairs in medical settings. Standard Ecomag actuators can be supplied in four versions: push models ECO 2/4 and ECO 6/8, and push/pull models ECO 3/5 and ECO 7/9. Depending on the model, the actuators can deliver push-load force up to 6,000 N or 1,348 lb and pull-load force up to 4,000 N or 899 lb, stroke ranges up to 300 mm or 12 in., and fast positioning speeds up to 13 mm/s or 0.5 in./s. All versions integrate built-in limit switches. As an option, encoder signals can be specified for added positioning functionality.
Click here to learn more.


Linear motion catalog and design guide 2018

Haydon Kerk Motion Solutions, a business unit of AMETEK Advanced Motion Solutions, announces the release of its new Catalog and Design Guide, revised for 2018 to illustrate a wide range of products engineered for use as building blocks in sophisticated linear motion assemblies. It is divided into three major sections: 1) Precision lead screw and nut assemblies; 2) Linear actuators and stepper motor drives; and 3) Motorized and non-motorized linear rail systems. In addition to basic product information, each section includes a brief overview of the technology behind the products, part number construction, sizing charts, and product comparison charts. Applications include industrial automation and robotics.
Get your catalog (no registration required).


Integrated motors for high-throughput applications

Applied Motion Products introduces three models of StepSERVO Integrated Motors that provide cost-effective and high-speed motion control for high-throughput applications such as packaging and labeling, automated test and measurement, and automated assembly. With encoder feedback and advanced control loops that incorporate servo control, StepSERVO Integrated Motors provide a motion control system that operates faster, cooler, and quieter than competitive technology. The three model series (TSM, SSM, and TXM) support different options for step and direction, streaming commands, fieldbus communications, and stored Q programming for standalone operations.
Learn more.


Minimizing noise in electric linear motion systems

Under most circumstances, electric linear motion systems are quiet. They certainly don’t create the hissing and bang-bang noises associated with pneumatic systems. However, there’s another type of noise that comes with electric systems of all types: electrical noise or interference. The results can be anything from erratic movements to complete system failure. Patrick Hobart from Tolomatic runs through best practices for minimizing noise in these automation systems.
Read this insightful blog.


New 22-mm brushless servo motor packs a punch

MICROMO has launched the brand new FAULHABER 2264 BP4 series brushless dc servo motor, which is ideally suited for handheld tools and devices such as motorized surgical instruments, grippers and robotics, advanced prosthetics, aerospace applications, and even for electric pruning shears and motorized screwdrivers. At 22 mm in diameter, 64 mm in length, and weighing only 140 grams, the 2264 BP4 series delivers 59 mNm of continuous torque and reaches speeds up to 34,500 rpm. These impressive power and performance characteristics are possible due to a new segmented winding of the coil, which also improves the overall efficiency of the motor.
Click here to learn more.


New telescopic pillars for medical equipment support heavier loads

SKF CPMT telescopic pillars from SKF Motion Technologies for integration into surgical tables, procedure chairs, and similar medical equipment are complete plug-and-play systems that provide OEM designers with ideal technologies to equip healthcare facilities with reliable, safe, and virtually maintenance-free vertical motion solutions. CPMT telescopic pillars combine a low retracted height (320 mm or 12.6 in.) with a high stroke range (up to 600 mm or 23.6 in.) to improve accessibility for patients without compromising the extended height necessary for procedures. Other capabilities include a high load-carrying capacity (up to 6,000 N or 1,350 lb), as well as fast positioning speeds and the ability to access pre-set positions for overall clinical efficiencies.
Click here to learn more.


Tips for selecting linear actuators

Aaron Dietrich from Tolomatic runs through the main specifying considerations for electric actuators, citing their high performance, adaptability, low total cost of ownership, and easy integration. But what about accuracy and repeatability? Should you go with a rod-style actuator or a screw type? What kind of force should you expect if you are considering converting from hydraulic to electric actuation? Tolomatic also offers an extensive ebook to help with your decision-making if you need it.
Click here to learn more.


Universal Robots' CTO wins 'Nobel Prize of Robotics' for pioneering cobots

The Robotic Industries Association (RIA) recently announced Esben Østergaard as the recipient of the Engelberger Robotics Award. Østergaard spearheads the development of Universal Robots’ collaborative robot arms, representing one of the most significant technology breakthroughs coming out of the robotics community in decades.
Read the full article.


High-performance, high-load linear stages for industrial use

The new reference-class linear stages from precision nano-positioning global leader PI (Physik Instrumente) are available in ballscrew (L-417) and linear motor (V-417) configurations. Both cost-effective designs offer high resolution with improved tracking performance, smaller tracking error, and improved settling time. Applications include laser cutting, scanning, digital printing, electronics assembly and inspection, and more. The L-417 precision heavy-duty ball screw model easily accommodates a load capacity of 450 N on its 166-m width frame with a travel up to 813 mm. Powered by an ironless linear motor, the V-417 has a similar load capacity, width, and travel range.
Learn more about the L-417 ball screw model.
Learn more about the V-417 ironless linear motor model.


Motor-to-motor communication is 1-2 punch for machine builders

Combitronic™ is a propri-etary communica-tions protocol developed by Moog Animatics exclusively for its SmartMotor™. With Combitronic technology, any SmartMotor can read from, write to, and control any other SmartMotor, can act as the master, and can pass master control from one SmartMotor to another -- virtually eliminating the need for a PLC or other bus master. Combined with the CDS7 motor option, the technology allows a simple, single-cable, power and communications connection from motor to motor, giving the machine builder a simple, cost-effective way to build a network of Class 5 D-Style SmartMotor integrated servos.
Learn more.


New study finds that using your torso -- instead of a joystick -- is a more accurate way to pilot drones

Jenifer Miehlbradt demonstrates the torso strategy developed at EPFL. [Credit: EPFL/Alain Herzog]

 

 

Imagine piloting a drone using the movements of your torso only and leaving your head free to look around, much like a bird. New research from the Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL) in Switzerland has shown that using your torso to pilot flying machines is more immersive -- and more effective -- than using the long-established joystick. The results are published in the July 16 issue of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America (PNAS).

"Our aim was to design a control method which would be easy to learn and therefore require less mental focus from the users so that they can focus on more important issues, like search and rescue," says lead author Jenifer Miehlbradt of EPFL's Translational Neuroengineering Laboratory led by Bertarelli Foundation Chair Silvestro Micera. "Using your torso really gives you the feeling that you are actually flying. Joysticks, on the other hand, are of simple design, but mastering their use to precisely control distant objects can be challenging."

The scientists wanted to observe how people use their bodies to pilot a flying object, in this case a drone, and determine which movements are most intuitive and natural -- approaching the pilot problem from a completely new perspective.

They started by monitoring the body movements of 17 individuals thanks to 19 markers placed all over the upper body as well as their muscular activity. Each participant followed the actions of a virtual drone through simulated landscapes that passed by as viewed through virtual reality goggles.

Motion patterns emerged, and the scientists quickly established torso-related strategies for piloting drones; they found that only four markers -- located on the torso -- were needed to pilot flight simulators and real drones through a circuit of obstacles effectively.

Overall, the scientists compared their torso strategies to joystick control in 39 individuals. They found that torso drone control outperformed joystick control in precision, reliability, and with minimal training sessions.

"Data analysis allowed us to develop a very simple and intuitive approach which could also be used with other populations, machines, and operations," says Micera, also at the Scuola Sant'Anna in Italy in Biomedical Engineering. "The approach significantly improves the teleoperation of robots with non-human mechanical attributes."

While the PNAS results provide a truly new and completely immersive piloting strategy with a focus on characterizing the relevant torso parameters -- leaving the head, limbs, hands, and feet free to perform other actions -- their proof-of-concept system still requires body markers and external motion detectors in order to work.

The next step is to make the torso strategy completely wearable for piloting flying objects. The application range is huge, from flight simulators to piloting drones -- and even, perhaps, planes of the future. A garment that implements the torso strategy into drone control without external motion detectors was developed at EPFL based on the PNAS findings.

Source: Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne

Published August 2018

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