Couplings for dynamic positioning and velocity control systems
Speed, inertia, bearing load, shaft misalignment, torque capacity and space constraint all need to be taken into account when specifying a coupling for any driveline. A servo application is no different in this regard.
However what really singles out a servo class coupling from the rest is its ability to maintain high signal integrity. This is particularly important in a closed loop or velocity controlled system where the coupling can have the effect of reducing the resonant frequency. A coupling with high torsional stiffness is vital in this instance.
When the emphasis is on performance, a stiffer coupling is needed to reduce setting times, improve positional accuracy and raise the upper limit of dynamic performance.
Huco Dynatork, part of Altra Industrial Motion, is a leading manufacturer of couplings, both standard and custom. Indeed the breadth of its range exceeds that of any other supplier and this is equally true of its high performance couplings, with a product portfolio that is comprehensive and available on a short lead time.
The Flex M, the flexible membrane or disc coupling, provides the highest performance in the Huco Dynatork range. These products feature thin pressed steel membranes that act as pivotal members. Torque is resolved to simple tensile stresses in opposing segments of the membranes.
These couplings have near-infinite life and a dynamically balanced construction which makes them the ideal choice for applications requiring high rotational speed and high-level motion integrity.
Three versions of the Huco Dynatork Flex M couplings are available - single stage (highest torsional rigidity) double stage and double stage with spacer (highest axial compensation). Typical applications for these products are in machine tools, robots, centrifuges, turbines and dynamometers.
Whilst Flex M has the more tolerant flexural system, Huco Dynatork Flex B and Flex K bellows couplings have the greater torsional stiffness. These stainless steel bellows couplings are available in three standard configurations - short, long and stretched - each with different characteristics to provide a wide choice for designers seeking high performance in precision motion systems.
Huco Flex B flexible bellows are attached to the hubs by a unique swaging technique that overcomes the uncertainties of bonding or soldering. The convolutions are torsionally rigid but elastic in the lateral and longitudinal planes. This type of bellows coupling is limited to a peak torque of 12.5Nm and rated for continuous uni- and bi-directional rotation and when dynamically balanced rotation can be up to 25,000 rpm.
Flex K couplings have bonded hubs. The scope of this design, in terms of size and geometry, provides Huco Dynatork with greater opportunity to design and manufacture customised design solutions.
Flex Ni is the popular electro-deposited nickel version of the Huco Dynatork bellows coupling, typically used in drives for sensitive instruments such as encoders, dynamometers and switches. Nickel bellows couplings accommodate a high degree of axial, angular or parallel misalignment through the flexure of their convolutions. These are formed by the electrolytic deposition of nickel to produce a stress-free and uniform, closely-controlled wall thickness.
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