Micro DC motor perfectly adapted

micro DC motor 450 px

This very small DC micromotor has morphed into a perfect application solution. It is in fact, a brushed DC motor, planetary gearhead and magnetic encoder customised to suit the application.

Being only 10mm diameter it requires close inspection to notice the unique changes that have been made to the motor solution. Through extensive and vigorous testing the design engineers for the end application have individually examined and “tweaked” almost every feature. The first prototypes delivered used a standard maxon RE10 motor and GP10 planetary gearhead. It was found that the extremely space constrained location where the motor is mounted required the assembly technicians to tightly bend the cables where they exited the digital encoder. This caused strain on the solder terminations of the encoder PCB. maxon quickly implemented the customers following request for a resin to be applied at the cable exit to assist with strain relief. This assisted to an extent by making the motor design more robust however it was what is commonly referred to as a “band-aid solution”. Further testing revealed the true cause of the cable strain came about because of an unspecified cable exit angle with relation to the customer fitted custom front flange for the motor. Also further exacerbated by the screw on mounting assembly between the motor and gearhead that allowed for various angle of orientation that were torque dependent. This in a small number of occasions caused the cable to interfere with other components in the machine. A solution offered by maxon motor Australia was that at the point of motor fabrication, the front motor mounting flange and customer drive element be laser welded in place. This is difficult enough to achieve given the motors micro dimensions but additional drastic changes had to be made to facilitate the customisation. This being a completely redesigned gearbox with a stainless steel construction to enable welding of the flange to the motor body. A special jig was constructed to hold the motor and encoder cable exit in specific orientation with the front flange whilst welding takes place to ensure consistent part relationship. Thus, over time maxon motor have morphed a standard catalogue motor and gearhead into a perfectly suited custom solution.

Contact maxon motor Australia at their Sydney office on Ph: +61 2 9457 7477.

New functionality from maxon’s EPOS4 Compact DC motor positioning controller

EPOS4 Compact 50-8 EtherCAT

Unlocking new opportunities for a range of applications, Maxon’s EPOS4 Compact series motor controller can now be incorporated into EtherCAT networks.

Maxons compact controllers now speak another language: the new EtherCAT models comply with the CoE standard (CAN application layer over EtherCAT) and can be easily integrated into existing EtherCAT networks.

The new, intelligent motion controllers with realtime communication offer a simple, plug-and-play solution for controlling brushed DC and brushless EC motors with peak currents of up to 30A. With their modular design, they are particularly suited to applications with single or multi-axis systems in small devices and machines as well as robotics.

Also available is an extensive range of accessories to make the connection and integration process as seamless and easy to use as possible. Besides the intuitive “EPOS Studio” software, Windows DLL and Linux Shared Objects Libraries are also freely available for incorporating the controllers into a variety of master systems. As well, a detailed range of product documents are readily available.

The versatile EtherCAT controllers are available immediately in two power versions: 50V/8A and 50V/15A. Other variants in the Compact series (EPOS4 Compact 24/1.5 EtherCAT & EPOS4 Compact 50/5 EtherCAT) will be available by the end of 2018.

For more information about maxon‘s EPOS controllers visit epos.maxonmotor.com or contact maxon motor Australia tel. +61 2 9457 7477.

 

 

A robot that hops.

Ascento-brushless frameless DC motors

maxon brushless frameless DC motors are used in a semi-autonomous prototype that can hop upstairs.

A robot that can balance and move on two wheels is being developed by a team of students at ETH Zurich. Named the Ascento, it is a bi-pedal robot that adapts to different environments and terrains with the explicit purpose to hop upstairs. Similar to a Sedgeway the centre of gravity is above the axis thus the robot can balance on two wheels and move, as long as it is powered by a controlled device. Equipped with sensors the Ascento can 3D scan a room and calculate the required height and length of jumps to take. Powered by two maxon EC 90 flat brushless frameless DC motors in the wheels, the motors give high torque and precise control that allow a jumping and balancing action, such as that of landing on a narrow step. maxon deliver the rotor and stator separately without an output shaft. This gives the researchers the flexibility to integrate the DC motors into the application and joint structure without compromising on space. Each motor is driven by a compact EPOS4 module motor controller. The potential for the prototype is in building inspections that are at risk of collapse or on fire, for example.

For more information on brushless frameless DC motors for robotic joint applications please contact maxon motor Australia tel. +61 2 9457 7477.

vlnr_Dr_Karl-Walter_Braun__CEO_Eugen_Elmiger_2018_V1_450px

Global DC motor and drive specialist maxon motor has recorded growth across innovation, markets, revenue and production in 2017.

Sachseln/Obwalden (Switzerland) – The maxon motor group accomplished record revenues in 2017reporting a rise by 8.6% to CHF 459 million (up from CHF 422.5 million in the previous year). All markets contributed to the growth. Cash flow increased to just under CHF 50 million (up from 41.7 million). The number of employees globally increased to 2577. At a 40% revenue share, medical technology continues to be the strongest sector, followed by industrial automation at 28%. With R&D investments of CHF 34 million and more than 360 employees in our R&D sites worldwide, maxon has succeeded in bringing more than 20 new motors and gearheads to market and expand the company’s position as a leading manufacturer of high-quality drive components and systems. maxon looks to the future with confidence.

The impetus of growth behind maxon is mainly from the innovative precision DC motors and drives with high efficiency as well as the matching electronics for controlling complex motion sequences. The company produces in Sachseln/CH, Sexau/GER, Veszprém/HU, Cheonan/South Korea, and soon at its new factory in Taunton near Boston/USA. In addition to the sites above, R&D facilities are also located in China, France, and the Netherlands.

Growth in all markets worldwide

The biggest market in Europe is Germany, followed by Switzerland and the UK. Italy and the Iberian peninsula also grew markedly. After some years of stagnation, a strong growth has also picked up in the US. In Asia, maxon achieved new records in Japan, South Korea and Taiwan. In China, maxon has seen double-digit growth over the past years. “The revenue increase by 100 million over four years has posed a great challenge to us as a company in regard to quality and service. Owing to our highly trained employees, we have been able to master this challenge successfully,” says majority shareholder Karl-Walter Braun.

20 + new products released in 2017 alone

One in seven maxon employees works in research and development. As a result of these steadily expanding capabilities, maxon launched more than 20 new electric motors, gearheads, encoders and controllers in the past year. In aerospace, the motors work at temperatures as low as -130°C, while ESA’s Mercury Planetary Orbiter space probe has to withstand temperatures of more than 350°C on its flight toward the sun. In 2020, high-performance maxon motors will be used in two rover missions by ESA and NASA, after having run for more than 15 years in the hostile Mars environment despite a scheduled service life of only a few weeks.

“Our ‘Mission 2020’ strategy for growth, which we launched years ago with the goal of achieving forward integration of drive systems, is showing some initial success,” says Eugen Elmiger, CEO of maxon motor group. “For example, we’ve been able to secure a large order for pump systems to reduce nitrous gas emissions in Diesel cars in the highly competitive automotive market. We also drove forward the development of complete surgical power tools, as well as micro-pump systems used in minimal invasive cardiac surgery.” Eugen Elmiger also expects healthy growth for the user-friendly and efficient high-performance multi-axis controllers made by zub, a company acquired by maxon last year.

Looking ahead: a strong start

The first months of the new year were characterised by strong growth across the group. Pending orders and revenues exceed the figures of the previous year. Due to the overall economic development, the company expects growth to slow down somewhat in the second half of the year. “We will approach further expansion with the necessary caution,” says Karl-Walter Braun.

For further information please contact maxon motor Australia tel. +61 2 9457 7477.

Design considerations for an exoskeleton for children.

Exoskeleton for children maxon DC motors

 

 

Developing Exoskeletons for children present their own engineering challenges simply because children are still growing.

Exoskeletons were largely developed for people that have sustained paralysis or suffer muscular dystrophy. For adults who have stopped growing there is no risk of outgrowing the exoskeleton. However for children their growth and ability present a multitude of challenges for design engineers. An exoskeleton that fits a six-year old perfectly may be much too small by the time the child turns seven. For a child with spinal muscular atrophy an exoskeleton is designed to recognise users are not completely paralysed but are able to move their legs to a certain extent. Sensors within the frame detect weak leg movements and respond immediately to provide support. As a result, the child is able control the exoskeleton directly with the legs.

Spanish company, Marsi Bionics, manufactures exoskeletons mainly for adults but have developed two exoskeletons for children, the Atlas 2020 and Atlas 2030. Weighing approximately 14 kgs it is made for children from 3 years up who have a neuromuscular disease. The exoskeleton can be adapted to various leg lengths and hip widths, so that it also fits teenagers up to about 14 years of age. The “Atlas 2030 is an upgrade of Atlas 2020”, explains Elena García, creator and co-founder of Marsi Bionics. “The main difference is that Atlas 2020 is intended for use in hospitals for gait training and rehabilitation, while Atlas 2030 is designed for use in private homes as an integral part of the patient’s everyday life. Both devices are ready for industrial production and until then, Atlas 2020 will continue to be used in hospitals for clinical research.”

maxon motor have five drive systems in each leg of the children’s exoskeleton. Brushless flat EC45 motors deliver very high torque in a compact design, coupled with inductive MILE encoders that act as sensors. The motors are controlled by servo controllers from maxon’s ESCON series.  “EC flat motors provide the best power-to-weight and power-to-volume ratio”, explained Elena García. “This is a variable of paramount importance, as gait exoskeletons require high power but a very low weight and volume.” The exoskeletons will be made available commercially once CE certification marks have been received.

For more information contact maxon motor Australia Tel. +61 2 9457 7477.

Brushless DC flat motors – in parts.

BL Frameless DC motor + encoder 450px

maxon motor Australia’s new frameless DC motor and encoder set allows even further miniaturisation and integration. The new motors meet the increasing need for smaller robotic actuation by assembling individual parts directly into the robotic joint.

This is the new frameless brushless DC motor (BLDC) with a diameter of 45mm and an assembled depth of just 23.7mm, it has a continuous rating of 50W. 70W and 130W versions are also available. The frameless design is particularly suitable for processing machine or rotary stage manufacturers who need a large through bore to pass cabling or tubing. For positioning a high resolution magnetic encoder ring also with the same bore as the motor rotor is also supplied as components. The encoder ring is marked with the zero position to allow alignment with the motor zero commutation point in the application and is available in IP rated, absolute and incremental options. The combination gives a low profile large bore positioning system made up from standard parts with shorter lead times than specialty manufactured complete assemblies. The second advantage is for space saving in applications already containing joint actuation bearings or mounting systems there is no need for a second set within the motor.

Contact maxon motor Australia for assistance with brushless frameless DC motors. Ph: +61 2 9457 7477.

 

Tailor made brushless DC servomotor and planetary gearbox.

Small brushless DC motor and planetary gearbox 450px

This small brushless DC motor displays the advanced miniature and micro motor manufacturing techniques of maxon motor. So small are the details it is hard to capture the modifications and quality. The example pictured is a 10mm diameter DC motor and planetary gearbox fitted with an encoder for speed and position control.

What’s new? Sure there are a lot of small DC motors available now days however it’s in the detail that defines the difference between motors. Pictured is maxon motors newest planetary gearhead range that has been selected because of its stainless steel construction. The body and flange of the gearbox are one piece allowing the design engineers to not only create a mounting flange specific to the mounting footprint available in the application, it also allows maxon motor to orientate the gearhead flange with the motor cable exit. Enabling a shorter cable and neater cable looms. Laser welding of the motor flange is also a technology that is used to affix a customer specific drive pinion to the shaft. This gives the strongest possible power transmission coupling in these miniature sizes. maxon motor provide its customers with complete drawings and models for appraisal before samples are manufactured even for non-standard DC motor and gearhead assemblies like the shown example.

The new 10mm gearhead can supply torque levels up to 200mNm and can operate with input speeds up to 15,000rpm. Standard supply is with stainless steel ball bearings, it has efficiencies as high as 90% and weight as low as 6.7g.

Contact maxon motor Australia for further assistance Ph:+61 2 9457 7477.

 

New powerhouse DC motor positioning controller.

EPOS 70-10 controller

maxon motor have developed their most powerful DC motor positioning controller to date.

With a maximum power output of 2.1kW maxon are pleased to announce the release of the EPOS4 70/15 DC motor positioning controller. The CANopen controller with an EtherCAT option is presented in a robust metal housing. Suitable for both brushless and brushed DC motors the positioning controller is a cut above the rest due to its ease of operation and broad operative scope. The various digital and analogue connections can be configured and the unit is suitable for use with a wide variety of feedback systems. It can also be integrated into various master systems. This new product and many more will be showcased at the Hannover Messe in Germany from 23-27 April. For more information please contact maxon motor Australia tel. +61 2 9457 7477.

DC motor positioning controller with additional benefits.

EPOS4

There are additional connectivity options with maxon’s positioning controller, the EPOS4.

The addition of an expansion board now allows maxon positioning controller, the EPOS4, to be integrated into any EtherCAT network as a slave using the CoE standard (CAN application layer over EtherCAT). The EtherCAT card developed for this use can be combined with the EPOS4 controllers in a housing, as well as with all EPOS4 modules. The benefits widen the applications where compact positioning controllers are needed, for example where short cycle times are important in synchronized multi-axis systems.

EPOS4 controllers are suitable for controlling both brushed and brushless DC motors. They are known for their high power density and excellent value for money. For more information about maxon’s EPOS controllers, please visit epos.maxonmotor.com or tel. +61 2 9457 7477.

Powerful zero backlash servo gear motor.

Powerful zero backlash DC motor

Brushless DC (BLDC) servomotor, zero backlash gearhead, holding brake and high resolution encoder combination drive offers high torque levels without compromising positioning accuracy.

This servo motor and gearhead combination recently released by maxon motor Australia can produce 364Nm with a peak torque rating at the output of 686Nm. Fitted with both an encoder and a holding brake inside the IP rated motor’s rear enclosure the combination can move heavy loads into position and make sure they stay there. The high acceleration of the brushless DC motor with top grade Neodymium magnets enables a zero to 2600rpm speed change in under 4ms. Being both brushless DC and also slotless gives the motor zero cogging or position detent for smooth position transitions and low speed performance. The solid construction and sealed nature of the motor drive components makes it suitable for mining, food, process control and manufacturing environments. Customisation of the motor and gearhead features is possible and both 24 and 48V DC supplies can be used. The unit is compatible with standard Servoamplifier and position controllers from maxon motor.

For more information contact maxon motor Australia Tel. +61 2 9457 7477.