Hybrid actuation system reduces energy consumption, simplifies designs
Learn how a leading manufacturer of household cleaning products solved its downtime problems due to an overloaded ball screw in its production-line electromechanical automated plastic cap dumping function. A Hybrid Actuation System (HAS) did the trick, combining the controllability of traditional electromechanical actuators with the power density, longer life, and failsafe conditions commonly found on traditional hydraulic systems.
Read this informative Parker blog.
Machine tending solution now compatible with any CNC machine
The Robotiq Machine Tending Solution has made automation accessible to businesses of all sizes, overturning the belief that automation is too complicated. The company says their part-feeding solutions can provide up to a 30% production runtime increase -- without communication cards, expensive wiring, custom programming, or permanent modifications.
Learn how to boost your CNC productivity.
How to implement redundancy in stepper motors
Some of the recent research activities in the area of electric motor drives for safety-critical applications (such as aerospace and nuclear power plants) are focused on looking at various fault-tolerant motor and drive topologies. After discussing different solutions, this article focuses on a miniature permanent magnet (PM) stepper motor design that provides increased redundancy.
Read this informative Faulhaber article.
Why choose electric for linear actuators? When precision, multiple positions, repeatability, or position feedback is important
Tolomatic has been delivering a new type of linear motion technology that is giving hydraulics a run for its money. Learn the benefits of electric linear motion systems, the iceberg principle showing total cost of ownership, critical parameters of sizing, and conversion tips.
Read this informative e-book. (No registration required)
New mini gearhead for robotics, semiconductor fab
Harmonic Drive is proud to announce the release of its CSF-2XH mini gearhead designed for servo and stepper motors. Available with an output shaft or flange, these gearheads are offered in four sizes with gear ratios of 30:1 to 100:1 and peak torque of .5 to 28 Nm. These mini strain wave gears are ideal for applications such as semiconductor manufacturing and robotics. Available through Electromate.
Super cool and versatile palletizing gripper: OnRobot 2FGP20
Palletizing just got easier and more affordable with the 2FGP20 from OnRobot, an off-the-shelf electric gripper with a payload of up to 20kg and endless customization possibilities to fit any automation needs. The 2FGP20 is an ideal solution that can be deployed and redeployed for multiple processes and handling different parts.
Learn more about the 2FGP20.
Learn more about palletizing.
New linear stages for increased load, speed, stroke
Discover the enhanced possibilities with Tolomatic's new size TRS 225 twin profile rail stage, offering expanded capabilities for precise and powerful linear motion in a closed-package design. This unit is built from the ground up to be highly rigid and accurate and is now available with strokes up to 86.6 in., travel speeds up to 50 in./sec, and load-carrying capacities up to 4,320 lb. Perfect for your heavy-duty needs.
Are ball splines right for your application?
Thomson Industries says ball splines are making a comeback, because more opportunities for automation bring more axes of motion to machinery, and pre-packaged solutions may not have the flexibility you require. But are ball splines the right choice for your design needs? They have the unique capability of integrating rotary and linear motion on a single shaft.
Read the Thomson technical article.
New stainless steel AC inverter-duty gearmotors meet IP-69K
Bodine Electric Co. has introduced six new type 56R1-50JW/H hollow shaft gearmotors that combine a stainless-steel AC inverter-duty, 230/460 VAC motor with a stainless-steel hollow shaft gearhead. When used with an AC inverter (VFD) control, these gearmotors deliver variable speed and maintenance-free operation over a wide speed range. Ideal for equipment subject to intensive cleaning, such as food and beverage, pharmaceuticals, and permanently wet environments.
Extend your range of motion: Controllers for mini motors
FAULHABER has added another extremely compact Motion Controller without housing to its product range. The new MC3603 controller is ideal for integration in equipment manufacturing and medical tech applications. With 36 V and 3 A (peak current 9 A), it covers the power range up to 100 W and is suitable for DC motors with encoder, brushless drives, or linear motors.
Motion systems: Check out THK's new online store!
THK has launched a new online store that is chock full of your motion system needs. Check out their latest offerings for Linear Motion Products (guides, actuators, rails, splines, and rollers), Feed Screw Products (ball and lead screws), Rotation Products (cross roller rings and cam and roller followers), Oscillation Products (link balls, rod ends, spherical bearings), and more. Lubrication Products available too.
See the new THK store.
Advantages of slotless motors over standard stepper motors
According to Lin Engineering, "Slotless motors have gone through innovations in design as well as manufacturing, making them a good choice for specific applications." This article explores the benefits and drawbacks of slotless motors and provides information that may help you decide when to -- and when not to -- select them as a solution.
Read the full article.
Intro to motor constants for fractional horsepower gearmotors
According to motor expert Bodine Electric, "Motor constants are needed to calculate permanent magnet DC (PMDC) or brushless DC (BLDC or EC) motor specifications and ratings, or to match the motor properly to an amplifier." You need the constants to predict the motor's performance with changing variables, such as different input voltages or different loads. This app note explains what the constants are, how they are derived. and how to use them. Very useful.
Read this informative Bodine Electric blog.
New wheel hub gearbox for AGVs and AMRs
Drive your automated guided vehicles (AGVs) and autonomous mobile robots (AMRs) with the GAM GML Wheel Drive Gearbox. GAM's GML Series Wheel Drive Gear Reducer uses planetary gearing for a coaxial system. The motor mounts directly behind the wheel without axle offset for an inline drive from wheel to motor. Features a compact design with short overall length.
New rack-and-pinion LJ linear heads
Oriental Motor USA has released the new LJ Linear Heads for its Rack and Pinion system lineup. The LJ Series features a new linear head with a maximum transportation weight of 200 kg. By attaching it to the parallel shaft gearhead and motor, linear motion such as pushing, pulling, lifting, and lowering is possible. Perfect for high-load and long-stroke applications.
Airbus achieves world's first fully automatic air-to-air refueling contacts with fighter jet
Airbus tanker test aircraft equipped with the Airbus A3R solution supplies an F-16 fighter aircraft of the Portuguese Air Force.
Airbus has achieved the first-ever fully automatic air-to-air refueling (A3R) operation with a boom system. The flight test project, conducted earlier in the year over the Atlantic Ocean, involved an Airbus tanker test aircraft equipped with the Airbus A3R solution, with an F-16 fighter aircraft of the Portuguese Air Force acting as a receiver.
During initial approach of the receiver, boom control is performed by the tanker's Air Refueling Operator (ARO) as usual. Innovative passive techniques such as image processing are then used to determine the receiver's refueling receptacle position. When the automated system is activated, a fully automated flight control system flies and maintains the boom aligned with the receiver's receptacle. The telescopic beam inside the boom can be controlled in a range of ways, including: manually by the ARO; a relative distance-keeping mode; or full auto-mode to perform the contact.
Once the system is activated by the ARO, the A3R flies the boom automatically and keeps the alignment between the boom tip and the receiver receptacle with an accuracy of a couple of centimeters; the proper alignment and the receiver stability is checked in real time to keep a safe distance between the boom and the receiver and also to determine the optimum moment to extend the telescopic beam to achieve the connection with the receiver.
At this point, the fuel transfer is initiated to fill up the receiver aircraft. Once completed, the disconnection is commanded. The boom is then cleared away from the receiver by retracting the telescopic beam and flying the boom away to keep a safe separation distance. During this process, the ARO simply monitors the operation.
The A3R system on an early test flight supplying a RAAF KC-30A Multi Role Tanker Transport.
This milestone is part of the industrialization phase of A3R systems ahead of its implementation in the A330 MRTT tanker development.
The campaign achieved a total of 45 flight test hours and 120 dry contacts with the A3R system, covering the whole aerial refueling envelope, as the F-16 and MRTT consolidate the maturity and capabilities of the development at this stage. The certification phase will start in 2021.
The A3R system requires no additional equipment on the receiver aircraft and is intended to reduce air refueling operator workload, improve safety, and optimize the rate of air-to-air refueling transfer in operational conditions, helping maximize aerial superiority. The goal for the A3R system is to develop technologies that will reach fully autonomous capabilities.
David Piatti, who acted as Airbus Test ARO (or "boomer") on one of the A310 tests, said, "It was extremely impressive to see how accurately the A3R system tracks the receiver. It can be very useful to be able to refuel another tanker or transport, for example to extend its deployment range or to avoid taking fuel back to base, but it is also a challenging operation and this system has the potential to reduce workload and the risk involved."
Published May 2020
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