More rovers on Mars

In 2020 the European Space Agency (ESA) and NASA will send their rovers to Mars. Here’s a comparison of the two machines.

Both rovers are being deployed to Mars in June/July 2020 to looks for signs of life and take soil samples.

Maxon DC motors feature in both the rovers and here we take a look at the difference between the two rovers.

NASA Mars 2020

Mission start: June/July 2020 aboard Rocket Atlas V-541.

There are nine maxon DC brushless motor and drive systems that help collect the soil samples. The EC 32 flat and EC 20 flat motors fitted with planetary gearhead and customised in commission with NASA/ JPL.

ESA ExoMars

Mission start: June/July 2020 aboard Rocket Proton.

More than 50 actuators from maxon assist with the wheel drive, sample distribution and camera movements. There are 17 different configurations of brushed and brushless DC motors including the DCX 10, DCX 22 and EC 40 combined with gearheads, brakes and encoders.

For more information on maxon’s Aerospace capabilities please contact +61 2 9457 7477.

ESA ExoMars 2020 NASA - Mars Rover 2020


Autonomous delivery vehicles …..coming soon!

delivery robot

Swiss start-up company TeleRetail is testing a prototype delivery robot that delivers groceries/ small packages autonomously.

Called “mobile trunks” these autonomous delivery robots are small containers on wheels equipped with sensors, intelligent software and powerful maxon DC motors. Made and designed to travel autonomously, reliably and without obstructing or endangering anyone, these small robots reduce congestion on the roads and are more economic to run than an electric car.

Maxon brushless DC motors, the EC 90 flat, features in the mobile trunks. Developed in conjunction with maxon engineers since 2016 the vehicle is still in it’s infancy. Before these delivery robots can be produced en-masse, laws need to change. Currently these types of delivery robots can only move around with the use of special permits away from the large bustling cities.

For assistance with your application please contact maxon motor tel. +61 2 9457 7477.


DC motors steering the rear wheels of race cars.


Active rear wheel steering drivetech

Maxon actuators, DC motors, gearheads and encoders help to improve the handling and overall driving stability of a race car through rear wheel steering, with up to 3 degrees transfer per side.

A maxon supported Young Engineers Student project is developing mechatronics for steering the rear wheels of a race car. At the heart is a maxon spindle drive (linear actuator) that converts rotational movement into linear movement. Fitted with an EC-4 pole brushless DC motor to provide up to 200W of power, GP32 planetary gearhead for torque and two maxon EPOS2 position controllers with HEDL encoders to set the steer angle of the wheels. The maxon drive system is connected to the cars internal controls to calculate the desired steer angle.

The main issues for the engineers were lightweight, small components, with enough force to set the required steer angle and trustworthiness of the components to work reliably without fail.

For more information on spindle drives or mechatronic engineering applications please contact maxon motor on +61 2 9457 7477.

maxon products in this article

GP32S_HD_450px EC4pole30_long_MR-Encoder_450px  GP32HP_450px
Linear Actuator EC-4 pole DC motor GP32 Planetary gearhead
maxon’s linear actuator (spindle drive) convert the power generated by the motor into feed velocity and feed force. The EC-4 pole DC motors have no cogging torque, high efficiency, and excellent control dynamics. Planetary gearheads are suitable for transferring high torque up to 180 Nm.
EPOS2-50-5_347717_V1_6_450px  Encoder_HEDL_5540_cropped  
EPOS2 encoder HEDL sensor  
EPOS is a modular, digital positioning controller by maxon motor. It is suitable for permanent magnet-activated motors plus encoders with a range up to 750 W continuous output power. maxon encoders allow accurate evaluation of the speed & angle position and form the framework for high-precision control loops.  






22mm High Speed Brushless DC gearmotor in DRS system

When you only have 0.2seconds to move your load maxon motors and gearheads are required.

In 2016 the Academic Motor Sports Club Zurich set a world record for electrically powered vehicles by accelerating to 100km/h in 1.513s. Maxon motors are used in the vital race car Drag Reduction System (DRS). The maxon 22mm Brushless DC motor and high powered 22mm planetary gearhead drive rear airfoil. Rotating 165˚ in 0.2 seconds means the gearhead had to withstand very high forces.

To read the full article please visit the applications area of our website. Or contact our Australian office for application assistance. Ph: +61 2 9457 7477.

EC22_40W_450px      GP22HP_450px

Pictured left maxon EC22 – The EC motors have excellent torque characteristics, high power, and a wide speed range of up to 100,000 rpm.

Pictured right maxon GP22 HP – Planetary gearheads are suitable for transmitting high torques of up to 120 Nm.


A new year full of innovation for the leading DC motor specialist.

New site DC motor specialist


Welcome to a new year full of exciting technological innovation. maxon motor will again lead the technology push for the most efficient, powerful and dynamic DC motors, gearboxes and controllers.

maxon motor continued to grow in 2016 achieving new records, the maxon motor factory is better, faster and more organised than ever before and all production sites are being expanded. A renewed global focus and streamlining will increase our organisations efficiency with more access to experts in specific application areas. With our increase in capacity and knowledge we will produce more and more complete systems and highly complex sub-assemblies offering further benefits to our customers.

We are eagerly awaiting the Hannover Messe in Germany where maxon motor will present over 18 new products in the 2017/18 program as well as new products launched on the maxon online configuration platform.

I wish all our Australian and New Zealand customers a prosperous year and look forward to helping you succeed.

Brett Motum,
Managing Director, maxon motor Australia
Tel. +61 2 9457 7477 maxon motors’ new site for innovation.

Advancements in drive technology, news items, blogs and stories come together on the website created by maxon motor.

The leading manufacturer of DC motors and drive systems has created a new site for technology enthusiasts. Regularly updated to include projects supported by maxon motor, the latest hi-tech trends, global and robotic inventions, advances in medical applications or MARS / Space expeditions. Experts from within maxon motor share their knowledge as well as application examples showcasing the abilities of maxon DC motor capabilities.

For more information visit or call +61 2 9457 7477.


Subsea thruster, submersible DC motor and actuator range set to expand


With the successful launch of the MT30 subsea ROV thruster from maxon motor, the drive specialist is expanding the range of ROV thruster sizes and submersible motors with pressure compensation vessels.

The MT30 subsea ROV thruster from maxon motor created a huge impression with 10Kg of bollard thrust from a 30mm diameter submersible brushless DC motor. Soon it will become just one option in the range of thrusters from the DC motor manufacturing marque. With a natural affinity suited to harsh application requirements the maxon range of heavy duty brushless motors (HD motors) were designed originally for use in down hole drilling rigs where extremely high shock, vibration and temperatures are experienced. The brushless HD motors in each power level have a version designed for submersion in oil. It is natural progression for the oil filled motors to be encased and pressure compensated for use submerged in seawater. This can be in the form of a thruster for underwater craft propulsion, an actuator for underwater instrumentation or a combined motor, gearhead and sensor feedback assembly totally sealed and pressure compensated for underwater tools and subsea valve control. The thruster sizes will range from 20mm through to 70mm diameter and will be available with the option of subcon connectors or custom cable (umbilical), compensators and control electronics.

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


Above: MT30 Subsea thruster with maxon submersible brushless DC motor and pressure compensator.


Above: MT70 Subsea thruster for ROV with maxon submersible brushless DC motor.



maxon DC motors in a climbing robot on the Sydney Harbour Bridge.


The iconic Sydney Harbour Bridge has 7.2km of confined tunnels in its arches. A climbing robot, fitted with maxon DC motors, has been developed to access areas deemed too unsafe for workers, sending real time information to Engineers to evaluate disrepair and damage.

The climbing robot has magnetic feet and uses a sensor to create a map of the dim and narrow tunnels. This gives the robot the ability to move through the tunnels climbing up and down walls and scaling drop-offs up to 1.5 meters.

The robot uses six of the Maxon DCX custom motor configurations. They are used to peel the magnets from the surface, one for each magnet, three in each foot. maxon DCX series of DC motors are a robotically manufactured, online configurable motor, gearhead and encoder combination.

Developed by the University of Technology Sydney and Roads & Maritime Services over a five-year period, the robot was able to access a section of the bridge that was too dangerous for workers and where paintwork hadn’t been updated since 1932. The climbing robot has negated the need to send workers down 30cm hatches that appear roughly every six meters along the Bridge. The risk of asphyxiation, poor air quality, getting stuck inside the Bridge and the need for emergency rescue are drastically reduced if not negated by using the climbing robot.

The climbing robot has the potential to access dangerous structures where workers would otherwise risk their lives to inspect or maintain.

For more information on DC motors and Drives robotic applications please contact maxon motor Australia on Tel. +61 2 9457 7477.


The maxon motors used in the climbing robot on the Sydney Harbour Bridge © 2016 maxon motor

Fitting the mould – Small DC motor customised for existing tool shape.

Old meets new with this customised small DC gear motor supplied by maxon motor Australia. Utilising the very latest motor technology on a gearhead profile that has been around for many years.

This small dc motor is a 12mm, 12V winding from the maxon DCX range. The DCX motors are the newest product range from maxon motor that feature very high power density and flexibility of supply with a large range of modifications possible. Normally a 12mm diameter motor would be fitted with a corresponding 12mm planetary gearhead that would match the applications required speed and torque levels. For this application the Australian customer had an exiting moulded part to suit a very old design 16mm gearhead. maxon motor Australia have worked extensively on the application requirements and have configured modern quality and performance into the old style gearhead shape. Custom motor and gearhead flanges were developed to maintain the profile of the old style whilst greatly improving the gearmotor output speed and torque. When developing modifications of this nature it is not satisfactory to simply change a dimension without fully understanding the consequences for the motor. Even something as simple as a an adaptor plate will need to have the applied forces modelled and evaluated before the design concept can be approved. This is a small step that helps define the quality of suppliers and their products.

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

Small DC motor with custom gearhead configuration © 2016 maxon motor

Small DC motor with custom gearhead
configuration © 2016 maxon motor

Brushless DC motor with two gearheads.

maxon motor Australia delivered a company first. A right angle spiroid and planetary inline gearhead fitted either end of a brushless DC motor.

Demonstrating maxon motors Australia’s ability to customise motor and gearhead combinations to suit demanding applications, this combination represents a world first delivering calculated ratios for a specific X,Y movement.

Starting with the right angle gearhead. It is produced in the USA and has a high stiffness proportional to its compactness and low weight. Further specifications on the gearhead are: intermittent torque up to 9.4Nm, Helicon tooth form, 478N radial load and high quality combinations of needle and ball bearings.

Moving to the brushless DC motor which was manufactured in Switzerland and was selected because there was a requirement for zero shaft cogging (a motor without any mechanical detent), the 22mm brushless DC motor provides smooth controllable speed from very slow to a maximum of 18,000 rpm (restricted by gearhead input requirements). The Brushless DC motor delivers 25W at 12V. The motor has an all stainless steel construction and an internal hall sensor network for accurate speed regulation. On the rear side of the motor where normally you would see an encoder or another type of feedback device, a special mounting adaptor has been machined to fit a 22mm Ceramic Planetary gearhead from Germany. By adjusting the gearhead ratios it was possible to map the exact shape of an x,y scan and the number of motor revolutions determines the size.

Developed for use in a medical hand tool, the dual gearhead and motor combination has a low weight and can be precisely controlled. The highest quality has been achieved by maxon motor in Australia sourcing components from manufacturers in three countries, having then customised and assembled for the end user located in New Zealand. A truly global solution.

For further information or assistance please do not hesitate to contact maxon motor Australia.

Ph. +61 2 9457 7477.


DC motor with two gearheads. Inline planetary and right angle bevel © 2016 maxon motor Australia.