How to lighten up gearing
Harmonic Drive LLC showed how to get weight out of mechanical components. Gear units (top) at the Harmonic booth used an aluminum housing. The circular spline was then cast into the part. Harmonic personnel say this approach saves up to about 30% in weight compared to all-steel gearing. In the HPN planatary gearbox (below), one technique used to cut weight was the substitution of deep-groove roller bearings for crossed roller bearings in the output bearing. The deep groove design lets the unit handle high shaft loads with a lighter structure and still provide just 5 to 7 arcminutes of backlash.
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