Can plain bearings be used for cantilevered loads?

There are few linear motion applications in which the load is perfectly centered over the supporting bearing. On the contrary – the majority of applications involve loads that are cantilevered, meaning they are offset from the bearing and induce a moment load. In this context, the term “bearing” can mean a single bearing or a […]

PI releases new catalog of piezo-mechanic nanopositioning motion systems

PI (Physik Instrumente) has released a new 250-page catalog on precision mechatronic actuators and nanopositioning systems based on piezo drive technology and frictionless flexure guiding systems. Products covered in this catalog use PI’s in-house designed and manufactured Mars Rover-tested piezo ceramic actuators as their drive principle. A special form of electro-ceramics, piezo actuators deliver a […]

What is a hollow core linear voice coil motor?

A linear voice coil motor (also referred to as a “voice coil actuator” or “linear DC motor”) is a simple yet very precise type of electric motor, consisting of just two primary parts – a coil and a magnet. When current is applied to the coil, a force is generated. The magnitude of the force […]

3DP leadscrew nut insert from Haydon Kerk boosts accuracy of 3D-printed prototypes

Now, a 3DP (3D-printed) leadscrew-nut insert prototype service from AMETEK Haydon Kerk gives machine builders a way to verify linear-motion design iterations quickly and more accurately. Engineers typically do not have access to 3D printers to do this prototyping. Instead, most of them contract with a third party to get quick turnaround on parts. With […]

Electric actuators double the eject speed of pneumatic actuators

SMAC Moving Coil Actuators reached a cycle rate of 2400 ppm (40 Hz) with their new LCB model electric actuator, meeting the target set by several leading packaging OEM’s. The fastest pneumatic actuators generally reach a peak speed of 1200 ppm. By doubling the speed of pneumatic actuators, SMAC can greatly improve the efficiency of […]

What is cogging in linear motors?

Linear motors are generally classified by the construction of the motor’s primary part: ironless or iron core. In an ironless linear motor, the windings of the primary are embedded in an epoxy resin, whereas the windings of an iron core linear motor are mounted in an iron lamination stack. The lamination contains teeth, or protrusions, […]

Microstepping basics

Microstepping is a method of controlling stepper motors, typically used to achieve higher resolution or smoother motion at low speeds. Stepper motors move in discreet steps, or fractions of a revolution. For example, a stepper motor with a 1.8 degree step angle will make 200 steps for every full revolution of the motor (360 ÷ […]

AMK SPINDASYN SEZ linear drive motor — rotor is integrated with screw

The new SPINDASYN SEZ electric cylinder from AMK Automation is a ready-to-install linear drive motor system in which the rotor is pressed directly onto the screw. Featuring high and constant force, high precision and position accuracy and high energy efficiency, the closed-loop positioning and force control of the SEZ make it an suitable alternative to […]

How to improve ball screw rigidity

Ball screw rigidity depends not only on the screw shaft and ball nut, but also on the thrust bearings and on the ball nut and bearing housings. Where: Rtot = Rigidity of the screw system (N/μm) RS = Rigidity of the screw shaft (N/μm) RN = Rigidity of the ball nut (N/μm) RB =  Rigidity of the […]

PID design using frequency-domain methods

With motion control applications, a PID or proportional + integral + derivative controller is often implemented using tuning or by a trial-and-error process on the shop floor. But modeling of the motion control system allows analytical derivation of the PID controller terms. By Tom Radigan | Advanced Motion Concepts Inc. Modeling a motion control system […]

New video: Parker mSR actuators and stages for sub-micron precision

In a recent video shoot with our esteemed colleague Paul Heney, I got the chance to experiment with miniature square-rail linear positioners from the mSR actuator series. Designed and manufactured by the Electromechanical & Drives Division of Parker Hannifin, this series of guided linear-motor driven positioners is engineered to deliver modularity and performance in a compact […]

Guide Master from Samick Precision Industry: The masterpiece of precision guides

Guide Master was developed to meet market demands for precision applications such as semiconductor, LCD, LED, and secondary battery production processes. The masterpiece of precision guides Features of Guide Master linear guide include: Higher load capacity: With 8 rows of needle bearings in its octagonal design, Guide Master has more points of contact between post and […]

Common applications for air bearings

Air bearings offer numerous advantages over mechanical bearings such as profiled linear guides and crossed roller slides. But they are still considered by many designers and engineers to be a high-cost solution, primarily for niche applications that require extreme precision. However, their benefits include more than just high precision, and cost is being driven down […]

What are V-belt pitch length and datum length?

The length of a V-belt can be specified in several ways, including outside length, effective length, and pitch (or datum) length. Outside length is measured around the belt’s outer diameter with no tension, but is only an approximation and is not useful for sizing or selection. Effective length is measured at the effective outside diameter […]

PI intros compact 6-axis motion controller for high-precision positioning

PI (Physik Instrumente) has released a new 6-axis servo motor controller, the C-884 DC. Most modern precision motion systems are driven by servo motors, because they provide high torque, fast acceleration, smooth motion with a wide dynamic speed range, and fast start stop performance.  PI’s compact C-884 DC motion controller can run brushless servo motors […]

Pulley balancing for belt drive systems: Is it always necessary?

As a pulley rotates, centrifugal forces act on the pulley, and if its mass is not evenly distributed around the axis of rotation – that is, if it is unbalanced – these centrifugal forces will also be unbalanced and cause the pulley to vibrate. (Uneven mass distribution can be due to imperfections in machining or […]

Gen 2 linear slide actuators from AutomationDirect

AutomationDirect has added second generation (Gen 2) linear motion slide actuators to its SureMotion line of motion control products. The SureMotion lineup includes both motor-ready actuator assemblies and an assortment of sliding components and accessories to provide a wide variety of motion control solutions for X-Y and X-Y-Z positioning systems. The new Gen 2 Compact […]

Linear motion FDA wash-down compliant components selection guide from LM76

A helpful component selection guide from LM76, “Linear Bearings, 6 Simple Steps – FDA Compliance, Wash Down Compliance,” details the linear motion components available from LM76 that are FDA/UDSA/3A-Dairy compliant. Included are: Foodstream electrodeless nickel plated pillow blocks, PTFE lined stainless steel bearings, ceramic coated linear bearings, self-aligning corrosion resistant linear ball bearings, and Thomson® […]

New catalog of custom engineered precision motion systems from PI

PI (Physik Instrumente) offers a new catalog on capabilities regarding engineered motion and automation solutions for high-tech industries such as photonics, precision optics, semiconductor and medical engineering.  What sets PI’s engineered motion systems division apart is their in-house access to the broadest and deepest portfolio of precision motion technologies. Creative-thinking engineers with vast experience selecting […]

High speed linear actuators: What qualifies them as high speed?

Like many terms used in the linear motion industry – “heavy duty,” “miniature,” and “corrosion-resistant,” to name a few – there is no industry standard that specifies what constitutes a “high speed” linear actuator. Nevertheless, there are some general guidelines that manufacturers follow when classifying and marketing their actuators as high speed. These guidelines are […]

Open aperture voice coil stage features 1 micron positioning resolution

The compact HCDS-025-038-02-B1-01 Voice Coil Stage from Moticont has a footprint of just 2.000 in. (54.0 mm) wide by 5.000 in. (127.0 mm) long and features a positioning resolution of 1 micron and a 0.125 in. (3.175 mm) open aperture. This precision cross roller stage has a 0.97 in. (24.6 mm) range of motion with […]

ITT Compact Automation expands motion offerings to include electric actuators

ITT Inc. and its Compact Automation brand now sell electric actuators, screw jacks, bevel gearboxes, rodless cylinders and more in addition to the manufacturer’s traditional hydraulic and pneumatic product lineup. These new product lines are available exclusively in North America through Compact’s new partnership with NIASA. Compact Automation has an extensive engineering capability with more than 50 product lines, composed […]

New mid-size, compact linear actuator from LINAK U.S.

LINAK has launched a powerful new actuator, the LA33. The electric linear actuator is a mid-range powerhouse built upon 35 years of specialized knowledge accumulated at LINAK. The LA33 shares the same advantageous features of all the actuators in the LINAK family including the LINAK Integrated Controller, Hall sensors for relative and absolute feedback, proportional […]

Force-controlled actuator from ETEL for semiconductor applications

ETEL’s new ZAO Force-Controlled Actuator adds to its broad range of advanced motion systems. Among other applications, ZAO is suited for semiconductor pick and place, die bonding and probing machines. Coupled with ETEL’s AccurET controller, the ZAO Force-Controlled Actuator is a state-of-the-art solution that reduces machine cost of ownership while taking up the next force […]

Common applications for linear rails

Linear rails are the backbone of many industrial applications, providing low-friction guidance and high stiffness for loads that can range from just a few grams to thousands of kilograms. Their range of sizes, accuracy classes, and preloads make linear rails suitable for virtually any performance requirement. The reasons for using linear rails are numerous, but […]