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Integrated pneumatic slides ‘will redefine the market’

16 March, 2007

Festo has unveiled a new type of mini-slide that incorporates a high-performance pneumatic actuator. The company believes that the integrated design will redefine the market for guided pneumatic actuators, and deliver numerous advantages over conventional slides, including smoother operation, greater robustness, and higher end-position accuracy.

Festo pneumatic slide

The DGSL mini slides (shown above) are the result of extensive market research and Festo believes that they will rapidly capture a significant share of business in this sector. The slides’ extruded aluminium bodies house pneumatic cylinder bores. All sensors can be mounted and adjusted from one position, simplifying installation.

A precision stainless-steel guide is coupled to the housing via ball-cage bearings that run along the guide rails. Repetition accuracy is claimed to be 0.01mm and linearity and parallelism are within 0.01mm, even at maximum stroke.

The rigidity and linearity of the slides means that several of them can be piggy-backed, if required. Another possibility is to mount the slides orthogonally to build multi-axis pick-and-place assemblies (as shown below).

Festo pick-and-place slides

The slides are available in 145 different models, with a choice of nine stroke strengths up to 200mm, and eight piston diameters from 4–25mm. There are three types of end-of-stroke cushioning which use a patented, easy-to-adjust thread clamp, said to overcome the creep problems of traditional lock-nuts.

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