Factory Automation & Robotics
Various actuators and sensors are integrated in automated manufacturing applications. The linking together of these components and the commissioning of the systems must take place simply and quickly. FAULHABER drive systems can be configured conveniently and integrated easily and securely using standardised interfaces.
What influence does hell have on heaven? This is not an issue of theology: marine scientists refer to the deepest depths of the oceans as the "hadal" zone, named after the shadow empire of the ancient Greeks. They do, however, suspect that a great deal more life exists there than in the mythical Hades. The deep-sea trenches may even influence the world's climate. Motors from FAULHABER are helping to find answers.
To the car driver waiting for the green light, the busy intersection in the heart of the city looks no different from any other morning. They don't realize that they are in the middle of a building site – or on top of one to be more precise. Just a few meters below them, a dazzling beam of light cuts through the darkness and startles the underground "inhabitants". A camera lens is transmitting images of wet, cracked walls to the surface where the operator intensively watches his monitor while he controls the robot. Not a scene from a science-fiction or horror film, but modern everyday life in sewer renovation. Motors from FAULHABER are used for camera control, tool functions and the wheel drive.
Zippermast - Tape measure meets zip
The remote-controlled caterpillar vehicle with the bobbycar format stops just in front of the head-high wall. Then, a mast extends upwards from its interior on top of which a small camera is mounted. A few moments later, it has an unhindered view of the events behind the wall. The Bavarian company progenoX supplies the vehicle for unmanned exploration. The highlight: the extremely compact “Zippermast” which consists of three interlocked steel tapes according to the zipper principle. A motor from FAULHABER provides the unique design with reliable retraction and extension.
Small parts gripper
New small parts gripper from SCHUNK functions without compressed air A small gripping system that is both quick and powerful – up to now, that was often only possible with pneumatics. Because with compressed air, large amounts of pressure can be conveyed virtually without any time lag. A compressed air supply requires a complex infrastructure, however, and having to provide it for every production step is diffi cult and expensive. Fortunately, this is no longer necessary – thanks to the mechatronics-based EGP 40 from SCHUNK. The new gripper from the leading expert for workholding technology and gripper systems easily achieves the same performance of its pneumatic counterparts. The drive that makes this performance possible is a Brushless DC-Servomotor from FAULHABER.
Robots explore other planets, produce car parts and vacuum dust and are today almost omnipresent. They do not, however, usually look like the science fiction fan might imagine: they move around as a flat trolley on wheels or are permanently installed as bulky machines in industrial halls. Humanoid robots with eyes and ears, arms and legs are still in their early stages of development. A division of Dongbu Robot is working in this field. As muscles for its mechanical people, the Korean company uses motors from FAULHABER.
Their precision and efficiency makes FAULHABER motors ideal for driving robots, which is why we have become a major supplier of the growing robotics industry.
Unmanned Ground Vehicle
Miniature unmanned ground vehicles reliably perform reconnaissance in the harshest environments, with the help of compact, high-torque servomotors.
MROV (Miniature Remotely Operated Vehicles)
The timely tracking down and disarming of bombs, IEDs, booby traps and other dangerous munitions from the extremist arsenal is most definitely a job for the professionals. Prior reconnaissance – to avoid calling in the specialists unnecessarily and to ensure a confirmed threat is handled as safely as possible – is an essential element of this process. In this scenario special remotely operated devices can drastically reduce the risk to the human beings involved in such activities, with high-precision micromotors replacing manpower to undertake the necessary hazardous operations at the bomb scene.
Humanoid service robots
Since time immemorial, people have dreamed of creating artificial human beings. Nowadays, modern technology is capable of realizing this dream in the form of the humanoid robot. Even if there is still a considerable amount of development work necessary, every project has to take those first steps. As an initial stage in this process, a humanoid service robot that works autonomously already offers a wide range of benefits. Apart from the interaction of the many components used, the main challenge is the power supply and the space required for the various parts. Microdrives represent an ideal solution for resolving these two key issues. Their considerable power density, combined with high efficiency and minimal space requirement, improves the power-to-weight ratio and allows the robot to operate for long periods without having to recharge batteries.
Freely moving arms are a well-established solution when it comes to handling tools within a three-dimensional space, and not just for robots. But most of the solutions available thus far have struggled to overcome the negative interaction between the necessary drive on the rotating axis and the required arm stability. By eliminating the mass from moving parts, the forces of inertia in the arm are reduced. The arm jib is lighter in weight and can work more dynamically, while providing the same level of stability.
To date, use of robotic hands in industrial production has been restricted to rugged two and three-finger grippers. They are being used for the purpose of executing relatively simple movements. Robotic hands for more delicate tasks have proven unsuccessful due to the lack of available technical capabilities. Positive interaction of microelectronics and micromechanics has now produced the much sought-after break through. Indeed, technological advances within this field are continuously growing. Thus, robotic hands with separately controllable fingers and joints based on human hands are no longer fiction and will probably be available soon on a day-to-day basis within the industrial sector.
Today, mobile robots are often deployed in critical situations that are simply too dangerous for humans to handle – as part of industrial operations, law enforcement or anti-terror measures, e.g. to identify a suspicious object or disarm a bomb. Owing to the extreme circumstances, these "manipulator vehicles" have to meet particular requirements. Exact manoeuvring and precision handling of tools are two essential prerequisites. Of course, the device also has to be kept as small as possible in order to allow access through narrow passageways. Naturally, the drives used for such robots have to be equally impressive. Special high-performance micromotors have become an essential component.
Today, mass-market electronics are manufactured almost exclusively on high-performance assembly machines. Given the nature of these fast-moving products, time is literally money. Therefore, two aspects are of particular importance for the production equipment deployed within this area: maximum quantities and minimum changeover time. For the manufacturer of such machines this means ensuring the best possible output, combined with simple processing in a continuous operation. This requirement can only be fulfilled if the complex operational sequence remains accurate and reproducible at all times. An essential component: micromotors with superior functionality and a micro footprint.
The handling of expensive wafers used in high-end chip production is a particularly complex undertaking. It is for this reason that the fabrication of wafers is a predominantly automated process. Etching represents one of many steps in state-of-the-art chip manufacturing. For this, the wafers are placed into a special handling device and clamped for further processing. Electronically commutated micromotors with integrated motion controllers enable safe, maintenance-free operation in three shifts.
Thousands of miles of underground pipes are responsible for handling important tasks. They have to operate reliably. Internal inspection and maintenance has so far only been possible where pipe diameters are large. Relatively small sewers do not offer enough space for human beings, and whenever they were damaged the only solution was to expose the affected pipe sections. An expensive undertaking. However, new developments in the field of electronics and motion control engineering now make it possible to inspect and perform maintenance in small sewers - internally. Since in the sewage sector all tools have to meet very high standards of reliability and performance, the drives on such sewer robots have to be extremely robust. Modern bell-type armature DC motors satisfy the exacting requirements for use inside of the pipe system.
Modern computer and sensor technology is perfect for fast, reliable data-gathering. Even such inhospitable environments as volcanoes, furnaces and the inner workings of nuclear power stations are no longer a problem. Unfortunately, this technology has always had one disadvantage: its lack of mobility. Until now, investigations of unknown territory have been hampered by the lack of a universal vehicle concept for carrying instrumentation. Areas which are inaccessible to humans nearly always demand vehicles that are extremely manoeuvrable and capable of dealing with difficult terrain. Just a few examples: investigations of mining accidents, searches in inaccessible construction sites, mine detection or even – far surpassing all of these demands – the exploration of other planets. All of these applications call for a high degree of reliability, redundancy and autonomy – all features of the new "Shrimp" vehicle concept.
The trend towards ever-smaller products is increasing. For this reason, assembly technology equipment is now also operating with ever-smaller components. Belt conveyors just like those that work with standard-sized components are now being offered for transporting high unit loads safely. Optimised to meet the special requirements of transporting small items, in many cases they are the product of choice. Robust materials and durable, maintenance-free components guarantee high operational functionality over long periods.
Electropneumatic Swivel Unit
In many industrial handling and automation tasks, workpieces or tools have to be rotated into position. This places great demands on swivel units, with requirements spanning everything from high speed and precise movement to powerful operation and low maintenance. In practice, it is difficult to combine these various requirements, since powerful pneumatics fail to reach the necessary positioning accuracy, while compact electric drives lack the required power. A novel combination of both drive concepts is now setting new standards for swivel units.
- Academic Research or Competitions
- Semiconductor Handling/Processing
- Semiautonomous/Autonomous Vehicles
- PCB / SMT / SMD Handling / Processing
- Print Industry Automation
- Bottling / Packaging / Recycling Automation
- Textile Industry Automation
- Laser Cutting / Plotters
- Electric Grippers