UQM Technologies has added a new system in its growing line of production-ready, automotive-validated electric propulsion systems for vehicles. The UQM PowerPhase HD 950T provides 950 Nm of torque and is designed for heavier commercial trucks and buses that require higher torque. This is an additional offering to the PowerPhase HD 220 announced last year, giving customers choices of various levels of torque and horsepower to meet their requirements. Click here to learn more.
Linear rail with integrated drive
The BGS06 linear rail with the integrated IDEA Drive from Haydon Kerk Motion Solutions is a versatile system utilizing the popular size 17 single-stack or double-stack stepper motor linear actuator with an integrated and fully programmable stepper motor controller. The stainless steel lead screw drives a precision nut embedded in a machined aluminum carriage mounted to a stainless steel ball rail. The result is a rigid, smooth operating motion system. Max stroke length is 24 in.; max horizontal load is 135 lb. Click here to learn more.
Compact linear motion module with motor
The new CKL Compact Module with linear motor from Rexroth delivers high force density in a compact package. This unit integrates an ironless linear direct-drive motor with a Ball Rail system for precise positioning. The CKL Compact Module supports high load ratings and high rigidity. By integrating the ironless linear motor into the module, no mechanical drive elements are required to execute movement, making for a wear-free and zero-backlash drive that enables ultra-precise positioning and long service life. It has been designed for easy configuration and installation, with pre-configured connections for power, measuring systems, and hall sensor adaptors. Available in a variety of pre-configured lengths up to 5,500 mm, with travel velocities up to 5 m/sec and acceleration up to 150 m/sec. Click here to learn more.
Reduce device and instrument size, without compromising power
The 10NS brush DC miniature motor from Portescap delivers spectacular speed-to-torque performance, ensuring high nominal torque and high power up to 0.7 W in a smaller envelope than motors with comparable performance attributes. This enables OEMs to build smaller, lighter, and higher performing machines and devices. It also eliminates the need to choose between compact size and weight, or battery life and equipment life cycle. Click here to learn more.
New kit measures motor shaft voltage of VFD-controlled motors
Whether they drive the fans and pumps of commercial HVAC systems or the conveyors of industrial production lines, motors controlled by variable frequency drives (VFDs) are vulnerable to electrical bearing damage. A savvy specifier will choose new motors that are already equipped with shaft grounding rings, but for retrofits the new AEGIS Shaft Voltage Test Kit makes it easier than ever to measure and document VFD-induced voltages while there is still time to head off damage and downtime. The result of collaboration between Electro Static Technology and Fluke Corporation, the kit includes a specially tipped probe and a portable oscilloscope. Click here for more information.
Curvilinear motion system provides unlimited track shapes
1-Trak is a steel, single-piece, completely seamless guided motion system from Bishop-Wisecarver. Users can specify any shape with no joints. 1-Trak circuits can also accommodate much tighter bends than is possible with other systems. The design's natural strength and accuracy makes it suitable as a structural element of the machine. 1-Trak can be customized with holes, slots, and other features. Systems can be specified with a vee-profile guide section of any size to suit bearings from the extensive HepcoMotion PRT2 or Heavy Duty HDS2 ranges from 13 mm to 150 mm in diameter. Wheel plates can carry loads from 67 N to 51,000 N, and tracks can be made up to 5.5 m x 1 m or 1.9-m square. A rack-and-pinion driven wheel plate is another option. Click here to learn more.
Motion controller for precision linear positioners and rotation stages
PI (Physik Instrumente) is offering a new motion controller for closed-loop precision positioning systems. The C-884, 4-axis digital servo controller was designed to control motorized linear translation stages and rotary positioners with very high accuracy and repeatability. The high-speed encoder interface allows the use of the latest direct-metrology linear and angular scales with resolutions down to the nanometer and microrad realm and below. This new controller is equipped with a dual-core architecture for fast servo handling and command interpretation. A wealth of software tools are provided for ease of operation. The included PIMikroMove software helps the user to get up to speed quickly, without the need for writing a single line of code. Click here to learn more.
The latest in the DCmind offering from Crouzet includes the TNi21 and SMi21 brushless motors, which feature integrated electronics, power capabilities from 60 W to 150 W, and high accuracy. The integrated electronics save space and provide a smart, compact motor solution. Other important characteristics include an optimized control loop that allows simple and accurate motor management, carefully designed internal thermal protection for improved safety, and intuitive, easy-to-use software. Excellent EMC characteristics assure operational safety and reliability. Available options include mechanical brake and a variety of planetary and worm gearboxes. Either model can be used as a stand-alone motor or in combination with other motors, or controlled by a PLC. Click here to learn more.
DC motors for extreme engineering
PITTMAN Motors, a unit of AMETEK Precision Motion Control, offers customized motor designs for high-end motion control applications. Highly customized DC motors, such as the one pictured, can be designed to meet strict customer specifications for use in extreme environments or demanding applications. The motor's outside is built using stainless steel for the housing, flanges, and shaft. The motor's inside is protected from debris and moisture using a combination of seals, including a dynamic labyrinth seal on the front mounting surface and o-rings between the flanges and housing. The four-pole brushless motor shown was optimized for 24/7 operation at speeds ranging from 500 rpm to 15,000 rpm. Click here to learn more.
Spin motors in minutes with sensorless, brushless DC motor drivers
Texas Instruments has introduced two 3-phase, brushless DC (BLDC) motor drivers that allow designers to spin motors in minutes rather than months. Traditional BLDC motor designs require five to 10 components, along with firmware. The sensorless 5-V, 680-mA DRV10866 and the 12-V, 1.5-A DRV11873 cut this component count to one with no firmware required, significantly reducing board space and system costs while helping to speed time to market. The devices also provide the lowest operating voltage and standby current to reduce power consumption by up to 75 percent. Click here to learn more.
Motors for large-diameter direct-drive projects
Applimotion routinely scales its LARC (Linear Arc) motors for large-diameter applications greater than 1 m in diameter. The modular nature of these motors allows them to integrate with large assemblies for scanning, imaging, and metrology applications where size requirements take priority over high torque requirements. LARC motors come in modular pieces and will bolt into any large-diameter servo motor application. The motors operate from standard brushless motor amplifiers from 24V to 300V. They work nicely with encoders, resolvers, or the recently introduced magnetic encoders for direct-drive applications. Click here to learn more.
Parallel shaft gearmotor with more power and performance
Bodine Electric Co. has launched a new generation of their type E and F gearmotors. The new 42A5-FX is a completely redesigned permanent magnet DC (PMDC) parallel shaft gearmotor that provides up to 40 percent more torque than previous E/F models. Forty stock models are offered with either 12/24 VDC or 90/130 VDC rated motor windings. A new synthetic lubricant allows the FX gearhead to operate at a wider temp range, while at the same time improving overall gearhead performance. Stronger, hardened helical steel gears and new needle bearings provide more torque and 25 percent longer product life. Bodine Electric Co. Click here to learn more.
RC8 industrial robot controller is world's smallest in its class
The new DENSO RC8 controller is 60 percent smaller and 45 percent lighter than the company's previous model and is the world's most compact industrial robot controller in the 3-kW output class. It has a footprint of only 12 x 18 in. and a height of only 3.75 in., saving valuable factory floor space and facilitating integration. This powerful, high-speed controller can communicate with over 100 different types of devices using DENSO's ORiN open-resource interface networking system. Optional accessories include a teaching pendant with a 7.5-in. color touchscreen, a mini pendant with a 128 x 64 pixel LCD display, up to two additional axes, and conveyor tracking. DENSO's Wincaps III 3-D simulation software allows offline programming and remote monitoring of robot operation. Click here to learn more.
Reduce wasted energy by 30 to 50 percent in air handling applications
NovaTorque's family of Gen2.0 PremiumPlus+ Electronically Commutated Permanent Magnet (ECPM) motors will soon be available in high-speed 3-hp and 5-hp 2,400 rpm (maximum speed 3,600 rpm) models. Also available in 3-hp and 5-hp 1,800-rpm models (maximum speed 2,700 rpm), NovaTorque motors utilize low-cost ferrite magnets in an innovative flux-focusing design to deliver the superior efficiency of rare-earth permanent magnet motors at a price that is competitive with induction motors. Recognized by R&D Magazine as one of the 100 most technologically significant products introduced in 2011. Click here to learn more.
New linear encoders for safety-related applications
Higher technical requirements in machine and plant manufacturing as well as more stringent national and international safety requirements have created the need for a new generation of sealed absolute linear encoders. HEIDENHAIN's answer: the LC 115 and LC 415 series with functional safety, resulting in encoders that achieve SIL2 in accordance with IEC 61508 and performance level of ISO 13849. Click here to learn more.
DARPA tests UAV-to-UAV refueling at 45,000 ft
DARPA completes close-proximity flight tests of two modified RQ-4 Global Hawk unmanned aerial vehicles, demonstrates technology enabling autonomous aerial refueling.
Global military aviation currently relies on a key enabler: aerial refueling. Fighters, bombers, reconnaissance, and transport aircraft use "flying gas stations" to go the extra mile.
Increasingly, UAVs are conducting combat and ISR operations, but they aren't designed to be refueled in flight. In 2007, DARPA teamed up with NASA to show that high-performance aircraft can easily perform automated refueling from conventional tankers, yet many unmanned aircraft can't match the speed, altitude, and performance of the current tanker fleet. The 2007 demonstration also required a pilot on board to set conditions and monitor safety during autonomous refueling operations.
But DARPA has been working to close this capability gap.
Global Hawk UAVs demonstrate close-proximity test flight.
DARPA's two-year Autonomous High-Altitude Refueling (AHR) program, which concluded Sep. 30, explored the ability to safely conduct fully autonomous refueling of UAVs in challenging high-altitude flight conditions. During its final test flight, two modified Global Hawk aircraft flew in close formation, 100 ft or less between refueling probe and receiver drogue, for the majority of a 2.5-hr engagement at 44,800 ft. This demonstrated, for the first time, that High Altitude Long Endurance (HALE) -class aircraft can safely and autonomously operate under in-flight refueling conditions.
The flight was the ninth test and the first time the aircraft flew close enough to measure the full aerodynamic and control interactions for unmanned-to-unmanned connections. Flight data was analyzed over the past few months and fed back into simulations to verify system safety and performance through contact and fuel transfer, including the effects of turns and gusts up to 20 knots.
Since HALE aircraft are designed for endurance at the expense of control authority, the program started with the expectation that only one in six attempts would achieve positive contact (17%). The final analysis, however, indicated that 60% of the attempts would achieve contact.
Multiple autonomous breakaway contingencies were successfully triggered well in advance of potentially hazardous conditions. Fuel systems were fully integrated and ground tested, demonstrating a novel "reverse-flow" approach with the tanker in trail. This approach opens valuable trade space for future developers to choose between various fixed and modular implementations of proven probe and drogue hardware.
"The goal of this demonstration was to create the expectation that future HALE aircraft will be refueled in flight," says Jim McCormick, DARPA program manager. "Such designs should be more affordable to own and operate across a range of mission profiles than systems built to satisfy the most stressing case without refueling. The lessons from AHR certainly extend beyond the HALE flight regime, and insights into non-traditional tanker concepts may offer further operational advantages."
Using this capability, U.S. military Global Hawk UAVS could fly nonstop for days or maybe even weeks.