Metronix recently launched a family of intelligent servomotor drives offering machine builders a platform to boost the performance of automation while also decreasing costs. The new ARS 2000 SE drives combine advanced features including integrated functional safety, universal encoder interfacing and a peak current capability that is up to twice that of many similar drives on the market allowing much faster acceleration. "The new servo drives integrate a very high-performance position control capability but at a middle-market price," says Metronix's Frank Essmann. "We've managed to reduce costs by up to 15 percent compared with our existing ranges, by carefully matching functions to the needs of a majority of our OEMs and automation engineer customers."
The ARS 2000 SE family of compact panel/cabinet-mounting drives are available in a choice of six single- or three-phase continuous output power ratings from 0.5 to 6 kVA - the same ratings as two other Metronix drive families with identical form-factors. This compatibility allows the drives to be used as more cost-effective replacements or upgrades in many applications, and ensures that machine builders can choose a drive offering optimized cost-performance.
The new drives incorporate three advanced features that are proving very popular with current Metronix customers. The first is an extremely compact design with integrated line and motor filters plus an integrated brake chopper and braking resistor. This is a typical characteristic of all Metronix drives - which are provided ready to use - avoiding the additional costs of external EMC filters and wiring.
The second feature is an increased overcurrent capability of four times the continuous output rating. This compares with the approximately two times overcurrent rating offered by many other servo drive manufacturers. The feature typically allows the speed of moves and the overall throughput of machines to be increased by factors from around 17 to 25 %. Metronix's tests demonstrate that these drives provide overall increases in automation productivity of around five to seven percent in typical continuous processing applications.
The third advanced feature is the integration of Safe Torque Off (STO) functional safety. This is provided and certified to Category 4/PLe according to EN 13849-1 - the maximum rating achievable single-axis safety level in this category.
The new drives also feature a universal encoder interfacing capability that allows connection to resolvers, analog/digital incremental encoders, and single/multiturn absolute encoders such as HIPERFACE or EnDat. Standard communications interfaces include the CAN fieldbus - compatible with the DS 402 CANopen device profile. One further feature is an SD Card interface, which can be used to store firmware and operating parameters. This allows the drives to be commissioned very easily, and facilitates an easy change-out by maintenance workers - without any need for a sophisticated software parameterization tool. The drives come in case sizes with widths of 54 or 69 mm (2.1 or 2.7 inches).
Compared with Metronix's existing panel-mounting drives, the only significant features that have been omitted are an expansion capability in the form of two slots that accept plug-in modules - containing additional I/O, fieldbus interfaces, etc - and built-in power factor correction.
The drives' built-in intelligence provides enormous flexibility for system builders. It allows engineers to create highly cost-effective drive-based solutions easily for many common applications requiring one or a few axes, or economic solutions for subsystems in processing equipment performing functions such as labelling or handling. Other common applications include functions such as synchronizing, sorting and a flying saw, and axes that automate auxiliary machinery functions such as set up and guarding. The drives can also be used in more complex multi-axis machinery and plant automation - which can now be designed in a more flexible way thanks to Metronix's expanded drive portfolio.
A powerful and easy to use Windows-based software tool for parameterizing and analyzing the new drives is available. For more complex applications, Metronix offers a motion controller which can be integrated easily.