The German drives specialist Stober has developed a two-speed gear gearbox that, it says, will improve the energy efficiency of machine tools. The PS box, which is available in two sizes (PS25 and PS30), was developed especially for use in the main spindle drives of machine tools. It offers a loss-optimised direct-drive mode (with a ratio of i=1) that delivers high speeds suitable for fine machining.
Fluke has announced a handheld vibration instrument that gathers data on the bearings and general health of motors and other rotating equipment, and can share it wirelessly in real time. The multifunction Fluke 805 FC meter can be used by troubleshooting personnel who need reliable, repeatable measurements of rotating equipment to make go/no-go maintenance decisions.
Siemens is entering the market for synchronous reluctance motors that ABB has dominated since launching its SynRM range in 2011. At the Hannover Fair in April, Siemens will unveil a series of synchronous reluctance motors and drives with outputs from 5.5–30kW that, it says, will deliver high efficiencies at both full and partial loads, high dynamic responses, and good speed consistency for precision control.
Festo has developed a device that monitors and regulates compressed air supplies automatically to cut energy consumption. When the MS6-E2M module detects a machine is in standby, it shuts down the compressed air supply, thus preventing air from escaping through leaks. It also monitors parameters such as flow and pressure.
The German controls manufacturer Beckhoff has developed a compact, multi-axis servo system that allows precision positioning and machining with extremely short control cycles, thus boosting production output. The AX8000 system combines FPGA technology with multi-core ARM processors to produce sample and response times of less than 1µs for current control, and velocity control cycle times as low as 16µs, depending on the switching frequency. Position control cycle times are 31.25µs, and the minimum EtherCat cycle time is 62.5µs.
HepcoMotion has launched a scroll-driven track system to cater for high-speed production line applications needing large driving forces. Typical uses for the DTS2 system include high speed-indexing for the rapid transfer of components in the packaging, automotive, food and special-purpose machinery industries.
Wieland Electric has announced a new generation of safety controllers which, it claims, have the largest I/O capacity on the market, the largest switching capacity (16A through one module), the largest program memory (512MB), and the fastest reaction time (12ms).
Murrelektronik has developed a module that can process both analogue voltage and current signals, and has four individually configurable measuring channels. The MAS168 module is said to simplify installations, reduce wiring and save space by allowing a single module to be used where previously two would have been needed. It is claimed to be the smallest analogue module on the market.
Panduit has launched a preconfigured industrial distribution frame (IDF) designed to deploy and protect rack-mounted industrial Ethernet switches. The company claims that the frame will allow equipment to be deployed 25% faster than IDF installations that are not pre-configured, as well as “significantly” lowering the risk of downtime due to switch overheating.
The Italian robot-maker Comau claims to have developed the fastest robot with a 7kg payload. The six-axis Racer 999 articulated robot has a reach of 999mm, and is aimed at applications such as assembly, handling, machine tools and packaging, especially where space is limited.
Unitronics has announced an all-in-one PLC and HMI with a 4.3" colour touchscreen. The Vision430’s touchscreen and five function keys are housed in a flat fascia with an IP66/IP65/Nema4X rating, making it suitable for use in the food and pharmaceutical industries.
Keysight Technologies has announced a power analyser that, it claims, is the first to combine accurate power measurements with touch-driven oscilloscope visualisation. The IntegraVision analyser makes it easy for engineers to obtain dynamic views of current, voltage and power.
The German chain-maker iwis has developed a non-contact monitoring system that measures the elongation of chains while they are running, and warns maintenance personnel when they need to be replaced. The patented CCM (Chain Condition Monitoring) system can be integrated quickly into chain applications and retrofitted to existing machinery without needing any extra chain components.
At the SPS IPC Drives show, the German drives manufacturer KEB unveiled a new series of bookshelf-format servodrives and matching servomotors, which offer real-time communications with higher-level controls via EtherCat, Varan or Can. The Combivert S6 drives can control asynchronous, synchronous, IPM or synchronous reluctance motors, using either encoder feedback for accurate positioning, or sensorless operation to achieve precise speed and torque control without needing speed feedback.
Eaton claims that a new range of variable-speed drives, launched at the recent SPS IPC Drives show in Germany, will cut the power needed to drive a motor by 2–10% compared to other VSDs, without any additional optimisation. The PowerXL DG1 drives, covering ratings from 0.55–160kW in six sizes, incorporate “active power consumption optimisation” and “dynamic power management” functions.