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Bauer gear motors make a splash at US theme park

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Robust IP68-rated motors solve reliability problems on popular water ride.

Boat rides are a perennial attraction at theme parks around the world. The formula is simple, but effective: passengers start their experience dry, and a relatively sedate pace. By the end of the ride, they have been soaked by spray, thrilled by rapids and – usually – terrified by a seemingly impossible plunge.

At one large theme park located in Williamsburg, Virginia, USA, the climax of its popular boat ride is a 15 metre vertical drop down a 24 metre long chute into a plunge pool. Thrills along the way include scenery that appears to burn and crumble before passengers’ eyes.

The progress of the flat-bottomed boats through the ride’s canal system appears to be magical. In practice, or course, motion depends on sophisticated mechanical and electronic control systems, mainly hidden beneath the water’s surface. Around 100 photo sensors distributed around the ride monitor the progress of boats, and 30 or so submersed, powered, rubber wheels propel them from point to point along the route.

During the early years of the ride’s operation, however, its hidden propulsion system proved to be an Achilles heel. Due to water ingress, the original geared motors driving those wheels were failing within 6 months of operation, requiring the ride to be shut down while replacements were installed. In fact, technical problems meant the ride was closed for almost half of its first peak season – frustrating for customers who were prepared to queue for up to two hours to experience its thrills.

Eventually, the theme park’s owners decided enough was enough. Their search for a more reliable solution led them to Bauer Gear Motor, part of the Altra Industrial Motion Corporation. Bauer’s engineering expertise and highly efficient, modular designs made it a perfect partner for the ride’s propulsion system. Furthermore, with many years of experience supplying gear motors to the water treatment industry, Bauer’s products are proven to be reliable in fully submerged applications.

Chris Macock, Project Manager for Bauer in the US, comments: “After suffering multiple failures it wasn’t surprising that the park owners wanted to find a reliable alternative. Each period of downtime resulted in unhappy customers, lost revenue and maintenance costs – which you don’t expect in a ride’s first season.

Having conducted a site visit to understand the environment in which the gear motors would be located, we were confident that we could supply a solution that would keep the ride operational throughout the year.”

The motor selected to replace the failing units was from the Bauer BG series. These compact, economical gear motors use high-tensile cast housings and can be configured to produce torques of up to 18,500 Nm. They comply with major North American and international technical standards, including NEMA, IEC, CSA and CE.

The modified BG50 units supplied for the water ride feature IP68 gearbox sealing, shaft seals with stainless steel springs and V4A stainless steel output shafts. A WIMES (Water Industry Mechanical and Electrical Specifications) compliant coating was also added to provide an extra level of corrosion protection.

The theme park operator is very pleased with the Bauer solution: there have been no BG Series failures due to water ingress after more than four years of service. Furthermore, while they may not be aware of it, the ride’s customers are pleased too: the enhanced reliability of the Bauer gear motors means they get the thrilling ride they were hoping for on their big day out.

Türkiye endüstrisine, alana özel, spesifik yayınlar üreten MONETA Tanıtım’ın sektörel dergilerinin editörlüğünü yapmaktayım. Yeni nesil, dinamik yayıncılık anlayışıyla, dijital ve basılı mecralarda içerik geliştirmek için çalışmaktayız.

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Motors

Module systems with higher performance

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The drive and automation specialist Baumüller is introducing new axis units for its module system b maXX 5000. The new units are suitable for a performance range with a peak performance of up to 240 kW. The entire range of b maXX 5000 devices covers a nominal power range of 1 to 100 kW and thus displays a suitable solution for various applications in machine and plant construction

Safe stackable servo controller

The converter series b maXX 5000 includes feed-in and regenerative units as well as drive units, which can be quickly and easily combined by an integrated drive connect system. For the machine builder and operator this means less installation effort and short start-up and service times. The controllers are available in the air, water and cold plate cooling types and score with minimal assembly space thanks to high performance density. With plug-in modules the devices can be equipped with safety functions according to IEC 61800-5-2. The machine builder can choose from four different modules to adapt the safety functions to his specific application. The plug-in modules enable a fast and flexible reaction to new requirements.

 

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Motors

The all-around solution in metal machining

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Everything is turning: AKM servomotors from KOLLMORGEN in CNC multi-spindle machines from INDEX. The MS40C-8 from Index is designed as a CNC multi-spindle machine for large and small production batches.

MS40C-8 is the name given to an eight-spindle metal processing machine from INDEX for fully-automated production of complex components. Yet with double 4-spindle machining, the same machine is also available for cost-effective production of simple parts with double the output quantity. There are a number of good reasons why the CNC multi-spindle machine, made in Deizisau near Esslingen, southern Germany and driven by KOLLMORGEN servo technology, is seen as a true all-around solution in machining technology.
The solution from INDEX is used both in the production of high quantities of precision parts and – due to their shorter set-up times – for smaller batches. “We are pioneers in CNC multi-spindle machines,” says Karl-Heinz Schumacher, head of development and design of multi-spindle machines at INDEX. There are currently several thousand of these machines in use around the world.

Demand for dimensional accuracy
INDEX specializes in both selling standard machines and also supplying fully equipped machinery with all tools assembled. Multi-spindle machines are mostly used for parts that will be on the road at some point in the future. These include injection pump components, valve needles, small gears or injector nozzles – all featuring accuracy levels within tolerance grade IT5.
The centerpiece of the INDEX MS40C-8 multi-spindle automatic lathe is the compact spindle drum with eight fluid-cooled motor spindles using synchronized technology. These can reach speeds of up to 7,000 rpm with 24 kW of power and torques of up to 57 Nm. They feature infinitely variable speed control, high torques, and a compact design; and they require no maintenance. As a result of the increased number of main spindles and tool carriers, the
MS40C-8 is also completely capable of machining highly complex components in a single operation. There are also two pivoting synchronous spindles available, each able to work on up to seven rear-end machining tools, with four of these capable of being powered. The capacity for two rear-end machining tools to work on the workpiece at the same time is a new feature.

Perfect workflows for perfect parts
In all cases, the optimum speed and feed rate can be programmed for each spindle location and each cutting edge, and these can even be modified during the cutting process. The eight fluid-cooled motor spindles integrated in the spindle drum are infinitely variable, require no maintenance, and are driven with synchronous motors. The KOLLMORGEN AKM permanent magnet servomotors are installed in the cross slides. The synchronous machines in the INDEX systems also include the added benefit of high-quality control mechanisms and high torque density. The optimum power-to-volume ratio allows INDEX to work with smaller drives during the design process. Careful use of space is a particular benefit in confined work areas.

High torque density
Plenty of power with minimum space: INDEX uses the KOLLMORGEN motors in part as positioning axes for the tools. The high-power density enables compact designs that take up less space when installed in the work area. The very good torque density of the AKM synchronous servomotors allows INDEX to convert the rotation movement of the motors into a linear motion without gears. The ball bearing spindles are connected directly to the motor shaft for this. “The lack of gears means there are fewer moving parts, and improves the zero backlash and the overall stiffness of the drive,” says Metin Han from KOLLMORGEN. As Key Account Manager he took INDEX´s requirements on board and translated these into a suitable design solution. “We need zero backlash and stiffness, especially with multi-stage thread cutting, so that the tool always completes the next machining step precisely on the threaded attachment,” explains Karl-Heinz Schumacher.

Drives directly in the work area
INDEX uses these features without having to clad the AKM synchronous servomotors in the work area beforehand–a time-consuming process. The AKM servomotors are specially designed to meet the requirements provided by INDEX and undergo extensive IP67 testing in the aim of keeping the work area as orderly as possible. The motors can be installed directly with the cross slides thanks to their special washdown exterior paint. This allows the units to be introduced directly into the machining process without impairing their service life. “That´s a good argument for the AKM servomotors from KOLLMORGEN”, says Karl-Heinz Schumacher. This just leaves the connecting cables. These are also exposed to constant bombardment from metal chips. As a result KOLLMORGEN placed these in a metal cable duct specifically designed to meet INDEX´s needs. Today, this co-engineering initiative securely protects the servo drive, together with its wiring, from the metal chips that fly around and from the cutting oil that gets into the work area at pressures up to 80 bar. Integration standards are maintained even though the AKM synchronous servo motors from KOLLMOREN are perfectly aligned towards the usage conditions in the INDEX CNC multi-spindle machines as a result of the co-engineering project. Background: the motors need to fit seamlessly into the machine´s overall automation mechanism without time-consuming adjustments. The connection via DRIVE-CLiQ is an example of this. This allows the performance benefits of the AKM synchronous servo motors to be used for CNC applications
directly with Sinumerik control units in metal machining, without needing to compromise on the connection technology. Until now, anyone who wanted to use motors from other manufacturers outside these Siemens world proprietary motors had to rely on special and costly DRIVE-CLiQ sensor modules. “DRIVE-CLiQ is available for the AKM motors, allowing us to continue processing the position signals 1:1 without requiring any SMC modules. They cost space and money,” notes Metin Han. “This leaves us free to exploit the performance benefits of the AKM motors in full in this application.”

The Bottom Line
Fitting with DRIVE-CLiQ is an example of how the synchronous servo motors from KOLLMORGEN can adapt to the diversity of CNC and automation technology – particularly for metal machining. This lets machine constructors use drives outside of closed systems, without losing any of the convenience or performance benefits. Very simple adjustments can also be carried out outside of mass production, opening up whole new avenues for INDEX – from gearless use of the AKM servo motors to protection for the connecting cable using a specially developed cable duct.

2. The AKM servo motors have been co-engineered for use at INDEX with a lasered nameplate and special cable duct.
3. “The AKM servo motors are simply compact”: Karl-Heinz Schumacher, head of development and design of these machines at INDEX.

4. The machining centers are very easy to use–a prerequisite for high levels of
productivity.
5. The steel rods are machined in eight different work steps.

Continue Reading

Motors

The all-around solution in metal machining

Published

on

Everything is turning: AKM servomotors from KOLLMORGEN in CNC multi-spindle
machines from INDEX. The MS40C-8 from Index is designed as a CNC multi-spindle
machine for large and small production batches.

MS40C-8 is the name given to an eight-spindle metal processing machine from INDEX
for fully-automated production of complex components. Yet with double 4-spindle
machining, the same machine is also available for cost-effective production of simple parts
with double the output quantity. There are a number of good reasons why the CNC multi-
spindle machine, made in Deizisau near Esslingen, southern Germany and driven by
KOLLMORGEN servo technology, is seen as a true all-around solution in machining
technology.
The solution from INDEX is used both in the production of high quantities of precision
parts and – due to their shorter set-up times – for smaller batches. “We are pioneers in CNC
multi-spindle machines,” says Karl-Heinz Schumacher, head of development and design of
multi-spindle machines at INDEX. There are currently several thousand of these machines in
use around the world.

Demand for dimensional accuracy
INDEX specializes in both selling standard machines and also supplying fully equipped
machinery with all tools assembled. Multi-spindle machines are mostly used for parts that will
be on the road at some point in the future. These include injection pump components, valve
needles, small gears or injector nozzles – all featuring accuracy levels within tolerance grade
IT5.
The centerpiece of the INDEX MS40C-8 multi-spindle automatic lathe is the compact
spindle drum with eight fluid-cooled motor spindles using synchronized technology. These
can reach speeds of up to 7,000 rpm with 24 kW of power and torques of up to 57 Nm. They
feature infinitely variable speed control, high torques, and a compact design; and they require
no maintenance. As a result of the increased number of main spindles and tool carriers, the
MS40C-8 is also completely capable of machining highly complex components in a single
operation. There are also two pivoting synchronous spindles available, each able to work on
up to seven rear-end machining tools, with four of these capable of being powered. The capacity for two rear-end machining tools to work on the workpiece at the same time is a new
feature.

Perfect workflows for perfect parts
In all cases, the optimum speed and feed rate can be programmed for each spindle
location and each cutting edge, and these can even be modified during the cutting process.
The eight fluid-cooled motor spindles integrated in the spindle drum are infinitely variable,
require no maintenance, and are driven with synchronous motors. The KOLLMORGEN
AKM permanent magnet servomotors are installed in the cross slides. The synchronous
machines in the INDEX systems also include the added benefit of high-quality control
mechanisms and high torque density. The optimum power-to-volume ratio allows INDEX to
work with smaller drives during the design process. Careful use of space is a particular benefit
in confined work areas.

High torque density
Plenty of power with minimum space: INDEX uses the KOLLMORGEN motors in part
as positioning axes for the tools. The high-power density enables compact designs that take up
less space when installed in the work area. The very good torque density of the AKM
synchronous servomotors allows INDEX to convert the rotation movement of the motors into
a linear motion without gears. The ball bearing spindles are connected directly to the motor
shaft for this. “The lack of gears means there are fewer moving parts, and improves the zero
backlash and the overall stiffness of the drive,” says Metin Han from KOLLMORGEN. As
Key Account Manager he took INDEX´s requirements on board and translated these into a
suitable design solution. “We need zero backlash and stiffness, especially with multi-stage
thread cutting, so that the tool always completes the next machining step precisely on the
threaded attachment,” explains Karl-Heinz Schumacher.

Drives directly in the work area
INDEX uses these features without having to clad the AKM synchronous servomotors
in the work area beforehand–a time-consuming process. The AKM servomotors are specially
designed to meet the requirements provided by INDEX and undergo extensive IP67 testing in
the aim of keeping the work area as orderly as possible. The motors can be installed directly
with the cross slides thanks to their special washdown exterior paint. This allows the units to
be introduced directly into the machining process without impairing their service life. “That´s a good argument for the AKM servomotors from KOLLMORGEN”, says Karl-Heinz
Schumacher. This just leaves the connecting cables. These are also exposed to constant
bombardment from metal chips. As a result KOLLMORGEN placed these in a metal cable
duct specifically designed to meet INDEX´s needs. Today, this co-engineering initiative
securely protects the servo drive, together with its wiring, from the metal chips that fly around
and from the cutting oil that gets into the work area at pressures up to 80 bar.
Integration standards are maintained even though the AKM synchronous servo motors
from KOLLMOREN are perfectly aligned towards the usage conditions in the INDEX CNC
multi-spindle machines as a result of the co-engineering project. Background: the motors need
to fit seamlessly into the machine´s overall automation mechanism without time-consuming
adjustments. The connection via DRIVE-CLiQ is an example of this. This allows the
performance benefits of the AKM synchronous servo motors to be used for CNC applications
directly with Sinumerik control units in metal machining, without needing to compromise on
the connection technology. Until now, anyone who wanted to use motors from other
manufacturers outside these Siemens world proprietary motors had to rely on special and
costly DRIVE-CLiQ sensor modules. “DRIVE-CLiQ is available for the AKM motors,
allowing us to continue processing the position signals 1:1 without requiring any SMC
modules. They cost space and money,” notes Metin Han. “This leaves us free to exploit the
performance benefits of the AKM motors in full in this application.”

The Bottom Line
Fitting with DRIVE-CLiQ is an example of how the synchronous servo motors from
KOLLMORGEN can adapt to the diversity of CNC and automation technology – particularly
for metal machining. This lets machine constructors use drives outside of closed systems,
without losing any of the convenience or performance benefits. Very simple adjustments can
also be carried out outside of mass production, opening up whole new avenues for INDEX –
from gearless use of the AKM servo motors to protection for the connecting cable using a
specially developed cable duct.

2. The AKM servo motors have been co-engineered for use at INDEX with a lasered
nameplate and special cable duct.
3. “The AKM servo motors are simply compact”: Karl-Heinz Schumacher, head of
development and design of these machines at INDEX.

4. The machining centers are very easy to use–a prerequisite for high levels of
productivity.
5. The steel rods are machined in eight different work steps.

Continue Reading
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