Tuesday 27 November 2012

Tough electric cylinder

New electric cylinder provides exceptional performance in challenging environments

Festo has launched a new electric cylinder, the ESBF, that delivers exceptional performance with high load applications in demanding and challenging environments, such as those found in the food and beverage industry. ESBF gives high dynamic feed forces enabling machine builders to improve flexibility and control.

The robust cylinder features a unique threaded breathing port which improves its environmental protection. The port enables users to apply a positive pressure to the cylinder during clean in place cycles, so they can be sure of its ingress protection for increased process reliability and long life in demanding environments. Alternative cylinders available on the market are sealed with no breathing port. This means that there is the risk of contamination of dust and airborne moisture inside the cylinder caused by the vacuum effect of the cylinder rod moving in and out, resulting in premature failure.

The electrical ball screw cylinder is available in three sizes – 63, 80 and 100mm – and delivers stroke lengths of up to 1.5m at speeds of up to 1.3m/s. It gives high dynamic feed forces of up to 17,000N and the piston rod is protected against rotating for additional reliability.

It has a running performance over 10,000kms and thanks to specially designed micro reservoirs for grease, it is lubricated for life with minimal maintenance. It has smooth surfaces, so it doesn’t harbour dirt and is easy to clean, which is essential in food and beverage manufacturing.

The competitively-priced ESBF cylinder is ideal for push-pull and positioning applications and is suitable for use in splash zones. It has been designed to meet the requirements from arduous environments and uses FDA approved food grade lubrication and has a corrosion resistant class of CRC3.

Sensors can be bonded on to the actuator, to provide the end user with position details for added feedback. For maximum customer choice, the piston rod is available with a male or female thread as well as a stroke extension and bellows. The bellows kit also comes with a threaded breather port, further protecting the cylinder and avoiding the common suction pump effect.

The motor can be mounted axially or with a parallel kit for applications where space is limited. Both options are classified to IP65 for the protection against the ingress of dust and water. Festo offers a full range of servo and stepper motors for the cylinder but it can also utilise third-party motors for added flexibility. The cylinder mountings comply with standard ISO mounting dimensions so users can use standard accessories.

“With the ESBF, we can now offer machine builders a complete solution for electrical positioning, including motors, drives and accessories, for challenging high load applications,” says Nigel Dawson, product manager at Festo. “We hold 36 combinations in stock with next day delivery, and special variants can be delivered in just 7 to 10 working days.”

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