Product design remains the most fascinating aspect of linear motion components as manufacturers try to answer the speed, size and efficiency challenges of customers utilizing rails, tables, actuators, sliders and other components. Companies like Heidenhain, AMTEK, NB Corporation and PBC Linear continue to provide technologies that increase productivity in this rapidly evolving market segment. Credit e-mobility, robotics, semiconductor and automation technologies for the market growth.
AMETEK Linear Actuator Delivers Precise Movements in Small Package
AMETEK Haydon Kerk Pittman recently released its 15000 Series stepper motor linear actuator—known as the LC15/LE15—with an encoder option. These actuators are available in captive and linear versions, with a variety of resolutions ranging from 0.02 to 0.10 mm per step. The 15000 Series can-stack stepper motor linear actuators deliver force of up to 8 pounds (35N) without compromising longevity or cost. In addition, models can be micro-stepped for finer resolution. The new encoder option offers closed-loop control, an added benefit to the actuator’s small size. Applications for the LC15/LE15 actuators with encoders include medical automation and other automated devices requiring precise, remote-controlled linear movements in a very small package.
NB Corp. EXRAIL Linear Guide Offers High Performance Characteristics
NB Corporation's EXRAIL linear guide has more rollers in less space than other linear bearings, which increases load capacity and disperses the load more evenly. It has longer rollers for greater contact surface and less contact pressure. The EXRAIL slide guide provides smoother movement and uses multiple small diameter needle rollers that reduce dynamic frictional resistance and range of fluctuation of dynamic frictional resistance. Static Load Capacity is also higher. Localized deformation occurs when a slide guide receives load in pitch, yaw, or roll directions. High Static Load Capacity means that there is a large amount of load that the block can sustain before it deforms. In fact, for the new design independent testing data indicated that it exhibited higher performance than presently available products. Lubrication intervals are extended by EXRAILs maintenance features. Its rollers are in contact with lubricated resin material during circulation and its 4 oil holes make relubrication easy. It has side, under and inner seals that improve dust prevention.
Applied Cobotics Introduces Automated Storage and Retrieval System
Applied Cobotics by PBC Linear has introduced the Automated Storage and Retrieval System (ASRS). This brings another piece of the automation tool to the collaborative robot system, offering more production power, flexibility, and ease-of-use. This is especially important to small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) that are looking to increase their automation.
The ASRS, in tandem with cobots, has been incredibly successful on the shop floor, especially with processes that require highly repetitive tasks. PBC Linear has implemented the ASRS and cobots to great effect on the CNC mills and lathes that produce their signature bearings. With roughly 80 CNC machines in their shop and 15 cobot stations in operation, the ASRS has boosted cobot production and created a more flexible manufacturing model.
ETEL Offers TBS Linear Axis
With the new TBS Linear Axis offering from ETEL, semiconductor equipment manufacturers can now integrate a high precision linear axis enabling upgrades in terms of accuracy and precision in its category of one-Degree-Of-Freedom (1-DOF) systems. With its ISO 2 rating for cleanrooms and incorporated Heidenhain Group encoder technologies, the TBS provides high cleanliness and accuracy for any application needing to carry up to 45 kg of payload with high precision and stability of macro and micro motion.
The TBS 1-DOF mechanical bearing is based on an indirect drive linear axis that is controlled by a high-performance, low cogging servomotor using a dual encoder feedback control scheme. This is combined with specific design characteristics and options such as thermal decoupling of heat sources, high stiffness and a micrometric hard stop to ensure that its performance is maintained over a long operating lifetime, improving the end users’ ROI.
Steinmeyer Offers New Miniature Ball Screw Design
Steinmeyer’s Miniature Ball Screws with track-to-track ball returns now include new “PEEK” deflector systems. These ball screws Significantly improve running properties, offer superior screw dynamics as the internal rolling elements (balls) motion more smoothly through their transitional ball paths/load zones.
With improved alignment and clean, well assured retention at assembly - the development of these next generation ball deflectors means the elimination of labor-intensive hand finishing/tuning of the ball nut internals at assembly.
Miniature ball screw drives are primarily used in the semiconductor industry, as well as in optical, medical and measurement engineering applications. The Steinmeyer portfolio of miniature ball screw drives offers a total of five different nut shapes for a customer's mounting design. The nuts can be provided either with preloading (for zero backlash) or axial play. They can be combined with two standard types of shafts or a custom shaft. Ground recirculating ball screws are available in accuracy classes P1 to P5. Rolled versions with lower accuracy exist starting from a minimum nominal diameter of 8 mm. Special versions, for example for clean room applications or vacuum engineering, are available upon request.