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19 September, 2018

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September News in Brief

01 September, 2012

♦  The University of Nottingham has signed an agreement with a Chinese soft-drinks company called Wahaha to undertake research and development work, including the establishment of a jointly-run Electrical Motor Research Institute in the city of Hangzhou, where Wahaha is based. This will open later this year and will be followed by a research centre in Nottingham in 2013. Under the five-year agreement, the University and Wahaha will also establish joint research centres in other areas, including robotics, bioenergy and food technologies. Wahaha has 60 production sites, employs 30,000 people, and last year achieved a turnover of more than £6.8bn.

♦  Eplan has released a tool that improves efficiency in engineering design, and cuts the cost of project generation, as well as the number of errors and resultant fixes needed on the shop floor. The Engineering Center One (EEC One) tool creates Eplan projects automatically using project information standardised partial circuits (macros). It combines project data and schematic macros and prepares the resulting documentation. By using a front-end configurator based on office software, it makes the generation of designs simple enough for non-engineering staff or trainee engineers.

♦  The British geared motor manufacturer Parvalux has produced a YouTube video in which the company’s technical director, Dr. Martin Mathias, outlines some of the work it is doing to characterise and reduce noise levels from motors. He points out that different types of motor – brushed and brushless, for example – produce different noises. By analysing both sound levels and frequencies, Parvalux aims to design motors that produce a noise that is pleasant to the ear.  

♦  Moog Animatics has announced an option for its Nema 23 frame SmartMotors which provides Can communications through a D-sub connector on top of the motor, instead of through the five-pin connector on the back. This decreases the space needed when integrating the motor into machinery and opens up vertical-axis applications by allowing for an integrated brake while using Can. The SmartMotor is a programmable motion controller with an integrated servomotor, drive, amplifier and encoder. Moog acquired California-based Animatics in May, 2011.

♦  The UK Technology Strategy Board is offering British companies the opportunity to bid for a share of up to £1m of Government investment in feasibility studies to demonstrate, in a commercial setting, the application of energy-harvesting technologies for autonomous sensing. The funding will allow the companies to explore the opportunities created by energy harvesting to extend batteries lives or to eliminate the need for batteries altogether. The feasibility and demonstration projects must be undertaken by a consortium of at least two partners.

♦  US-based Advanced Micro Controls has released a 3-in-1 integrated motion package with Ethernet communications. The SMD23E is based on a Nema frame 23 stepper motor integrated with a drive and controller (with an encoder as an option), thus simplifying installation and reducing cabling. It communicates with a PLC or PAC via EtherNet/IP or Modbus-TCP using standard RJ-45 connectors and Cat 5/6 cabling. The compact design allows users to add motion control axes easily to machines or production lines.  The 3.4A microstepping DC drives are ODVA conformance tested.




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