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Medical and astronomical uses for cable carriers are winners

11 October, 2012

The energy chain specialist igus UK has presented awards to two British engineering companies for their innovative uses of cable carrier systems.

The first of the “vector” awards has been won by the UK Astronomy Technology Centre which used a heavy-duty e-chain (shown above) to route a network of cables and cooling gas pipes for an instrument being used on a telescope at an observatory in Chile. The system can be moved through 270° in both directions from its initial position, so the energy chain had to be able to carry the pipes and cables safely through 540° as the instrument turns. The near-infrared spectrometer will be used to investigate the physical and environmental processes that shape the formation and evolution of galaxies.

The second award has gone to Xograph Healthcare for its use of a low-friction chain for an X-ray system installed in a hospital emergency room (above). During large-scale emergencies, the ceiling-mounted X-ray system can be moved across bays to different patients, without having to move them. Previously, the hanging cables required made such a system impossible, but the Xograph design contains the cables in an energy chain.

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