Wednesday 29 May 2013

New high speed belt axis delivers excellent performance

Festo has introduced a new cost-effective belt drive ELGA-RF with increased speed and load capacities that sets a new high standard in industry. The compact axis enables machine builders and engineers to increase their machine throughput and efficiencies, while benefiting from low maintenance and reduced operational costs.
Increased speed and load capacities set a new high standard in industry
This drive has robust roller bearings, which enables it to move at a faster speed of up to 10 m/s compared with alternative belt drives that use ball bearing guides. It can also handle almost double the payload capacity of previous roller bearings. As a result, users can position heavier loads, faster and more accurately.

The drive is robust and suitable for use in harsh operating conditions. It incorporates a stainless steel corrosion-resistant cover strip making it suited to dusty environments, and a magnetic attachment ensures the strip protects the bearings and belt even when inverted.

The ELGA-RF axis is available in three sizes (70, 80 and 120 mm) and with stroke lengths from 50 mm up to 7,400 mm. It includes oil impregnated felt which ensures a maintenance free lifetime of over five million metres of travel. This reduces maintenance costs and downtime, therefore enabling the user to increase efficiencies.

The sturdy ELGA-RF has been designed with a low, flat profile and the bearings are spaced wide apart, meaning it can accurately handle and position loads of up to 160 kgs – 100 kgs more than previously possible with the roller bearing – all without taking up additional space on the machine.

Motor mounting is simple and space saving. The axis features flexible mountings on all four corners as standard, so the drive can be best set up for individual applications.

The ELGA-RF features a lightweight aluminium carriage, providing low inertia. However, as it is capable of carrying high loads, users should ensure that the mountings are secure. Festo helicoil all mounting threads to increase the reliability and robustness of the drive further. All Festo’s drives have centering rings on all mounting faces to reduce shear stress in the bolts, and as a result, offer excellent accuracy.

“Ball bearing guides provide reliable and robust linear movement, however they have limited speed,” says Nigel Dawson, Product Manager for electric drives at Festo. “Now with Festo’s roller bearing ELGA-RF, machine builders can achieve higher speeds of up to 10 m/s, and at no extra cost. Delivered ready-to-install, the ELGA-RF is easy to use and fit, making it is suitable for handling, feeding and conveying automation applications in the electronics and packaging industries.”

The ELGA-RF linear drives are simple to size and order using Festo’s free Positioning Drives software. The software can be downloaded from Festo’s website and users enter their requirements, such as load and stroke length etc, to efficiently size electric drives, motors and gearboxes easily. Axes are built and delivered ready to install in 7-10 working days.

Festo’s new axis is part of the company’s family of reliable and cost-effective ELGA linear drives, which are available as individual axes, complete kits consisting of axis, motor controller and systems for multi-axis setups, or as complete solutions involving assemblies and control panel packages.

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