At the recent LEAP Awards dinner gala in Costa Mesa, Calif., maxon precision motors was awarded the trophy for top design in Motion Control — for its Exoskeleton Joint Actuator.
The judges commented: “Excellent product in a ground breaking application. maxon has taken a leadership role by packaging products specifically for the exoskeleton market … By providing an integrated assembly, customers will be able to focus on application specific elements without the burden of reinventing joint actuation.”
The global Exoskeleton market is growing in both market share and technological developments at a rapid rate each year. maxon motor worked with several global customers to design and develop brushless DC motor solutions for use in robotic limbs. The Exoskeleton joint actuator is for use in hip and knee exoskeletons. A complete joint actuation unit includes a pancake brushless DC motor (EC90 flat) with inertia optimized rotor, an internal high-resolution 4096 MILE Encoder, a planetary gearhead with absolute encoder and an EPOS4 position controller with CAN and RS232 interface.
Fitting the 17-bit SSI absolute encoder directly at the joint rotation to a degree will negate the effect of gearhead backlash … giving designers increased positioning accuracy. The unit will deliver 54 Nm of continuous torque and 120 Nm on a 20% duty cycle. The system can be operated on supplies between 10 and 50 Vdc and the actuation speed is up to 22 rpm. The wide variety of different operating modes provides high flexibility in testing and optimizing of the entire exoskeleton system.