EXCM Mini H Handler brings a new high standard to precision positioning
Festo has launched a new compact gantry, the EXCM Mini H Handler, which offers the industry a new high standard in precise, fast positioning. It is the world's first production, off-the-shelf handling gantry to feature kinematic technology; this significantly reduces its lifetime costs. The new H Handler systems are attractively priced, while faster throughput, improved energy efficiency and reduced downtime combine to reduce operating expenses.
The EXCM Mini H Handler's parallel kinematic system is extremely energy efficient compared to traditional Cartesian positioning systems in which one motor must transport the weight of the other. Instead, two motors act directly on the load via a common recirculating tooth belt. By sharing the load in this way, the robotics can achieve higher dynamics, and EXCM realises positioning speeds of up to 0.5 m/s with less cost, energy usage and vibration. The Mini H Handler's closed-loop servo controller can drive the end effector rapidly and accurately to any X-Y co-ordinate position.
The Handlers start from just A4 size with a good ratio of working area to total footprint. Installation height is also minimised, as both motors lie in the same plane. With these compact dimensions, the EXCM Mini H Handlers are perfect for desktop applications, such as those found in electronics, light assembly, and medlab. Their robustness and reliability increases uptime; as neither motor moves, no energy chain is required, which eliminates drag and cable failure - traditionally the greatest causes of downtime.
The Mini H Handler range currently comprises two products; the EXCM-10 and the EXCM-30. The EXCM-10 offers its kinematic benefits in a basic package, while the EXCM-30 supports a higher payload of up to 3 kg, and high precision, with a maximum acceleration of 10 m/s2, maximum speed of 0.5 m/s and repetition accuracy of ±0.05 mm with ball bearing guidance. The gantries are available with six X-axis fixed stroke lengths up to 700 mm and a Y-axis stroke up to 360 mm.
The EXCM is extremely easy to install and control. The controller can be driven from any PLC or PC device using digital I/O, Ethernet TCP/IP or CAN bus network. With network-connected devices, users can directly program the Mini H Handler with familiar parameters - X and Y Cartesian co-ordinates, vector speed, acceleration and deceleration. Additionally, all devices can run Festo's free downloadable Festo Configuration Tool (FCT). This allows a sequence of up to 32 positioning steps to be set up and downloaded to a lookup table stored within the controller.
"The EXCM mini handlers are incredibly easy to integrate," says Nigel Dawson, product manager at Festo GB. "We supply the systems fully assembled and tested, leaving users free to focus on their core profit-generating activities rather than automation design details. With a single part number, users can benefit from our simple procurement process and reduce their process costs."
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