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Welcome to Kollmorgen's Blog in Motion.  We have been adding information and knowledge to the great web based world for many years - through white papers, technical documents, and even webinars.  Kollmorgen enjoys sharing our knowledge with you, as well as identifying other motion related tidbits through our Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and YouTube feeds.  Our newest source is Blog in Motion, covering a wide range of topics, as well as some interesting contributing authors with lots of Motion experience.  If Motion Matters to you, stop by, follow, like, and sign up so you can stay tuned for what Kollmorgen has in store for you!

Bode plots have existed since the 1930’s when Hendrik Bode devised a way to display gain and phase-shift plots in the frequency domain. Today, to produce a detailed frequency response plot that reveals the unique fingerprint of a servo mechanism in the frequency domain is as simple as pressing a computer key. This paper discusses five key items in a Bode plot and what they reveal about the machine.

A servo motor is an electromechanical device that produces torque and velocity based on the supplied current and voltage. A servo motor works as part of a closed loop system providing torque and velocity as commanded from a servo controller utilizing a feedback device to close the loop. The feedback device supplies information such as current, velocity, or position to the servo controller, which adjusts the motor action depending on the commanded parameters.

We’ve all seen the movies…the one where the ‘intelligent’ robots go off-piste and bring untold chaos to the human race.  It never really turns out rosy just as the end credit start to fall. However, regardless of Hollywood’s ‘predictions’, no matter where I go or where I look (as part of my role in Kollmorgen’s Aerospace & Defence team) I am constantly tripping over a growing exposure to robotics and Intelligent robots in the Defence sector; air, land, sea and subsea.

Who you are defines how you think of robotics and automation.  Software experts and IT may think of internet bots.  They might also think about the new, emerging field of Robotics Process Automation (RPA), which is software that can do mundane and administrative computer tasks.  RPA reduces repetitive tasks such as checking, verifying and transferring data.  Manufacturing facilities will think about physical robots or cobots that are also deployed to handle repetitive tasks such as loading and unloading a CNC machine or installing a computer cover.  They can also be used to automate dangerous tasks such as lifting, welding or removing paint.

Frameless, or “servo motor kits”, open up numerous possibilities in designing motion elements for your machine related to performance.  A frameless motor consists of rotor and stator components which are built into a machine assembly to transmit torque to a load.  Many applications which take advantage of a frameless motor are direct driven, which eliminates bandwidth robbing compliance.  Effectively, this means you have eliminated torsional losses and any wind-up or spring losses. 

A few years ago I watched the DARPA challenge. If you’re not familiar with the challenge, the idea was to build a robot that could drive a car, climb a ladder, turn a handle, use a drill and various other activities.  In the challenge each robot was given an hour to complete the tasks.  It was a slow process. I had two reasons to watch, one, Kollmorgen has some frameless motors in the Carnegie Mellon robot and two, I’m a Virginia Tech graduate and they also provided a robot.
Let’s take a step back and talk about what a DC motor is.  Typically, when thinking about a DC motor, you really are talking about a DC permanent brush type motor.  Apply DC power, adjust the voltage and current levels to control it, usually with a simple amplifier, and you have a dc system solution.  Add in some type of feedback and you will have pretty good control.  There are lots and lots of robot types, but mobile robots are typically going to need to run off of a battery source, thus the need for a DC solution.

Robots and automated machines and vehicles form an integral part of our everyday lives and are not just found in the industrial sector: precise control of motion is indispensable. The combination of the two areas of technology – motion (servo drives) and movement (AGVs) – allows KOLLMORGEN to play a leading role in “Motion in Movement – 4.0 Ready” solutions, and to offer its own customers complete and integrated systems, ready for Industry 4.0.

Trending in the automation world these days is the merging of the collaborative robot and the AGV, creating a mobile Cobot with the navigational capabilities of today’s AGV’s. This opens new opportunities in warehouse logistics that improves the entire supply chain. With additional power demands created by this combination, innovative motor and drive solutions become paramount.

Usually, in discussion about these terms, we tie in the word actuator – so more precisely, what is the difference between a linear actuator vs a rotary actuator?

Linear actuators, in essence, move something along a straight line, usually back and forth.  Rotary actuators, on the other hand will turn something a number of degrees in a circle – it might be a limited number or an infinite number.

So, linear actuator – back and forth, Rotary actuator - round and round

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