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Industry 4.0 Summitt

Manchester Central (M2 3GX)

28/02/2018 - 01/03/2018

Industry 4.0, the 4th industrial revolution, smart manufacturing, digital factories…these are (more)

Drives & Controls 2018

NEC, Birmingham(B40 1NT)

10/04/2018 - 12/04/2018

Drives & Controls exhibition is recognised as the UK’s leading show for Automation, Power (more)

UKIVA Machine Vision Conference

Arena MK(MK1 1ST)


Following a successful launch in 2017, UKIVA Machine Vision Conference returns to Arena MK, Milton Keynes, (more)

Triflex RS for compact cable guidance

Triflex RS for compact cable guidance
Plastic corrugated tubes used in robotic applications can bend and tear because they cannot absorb torsional movements very well. Energy chain expert Igus has already developed the Triflex R - a multi-dimensional energy chain system with complete freedom of movement in the X-, Y- and Z-axes. Now, there is a new universal module available called Triflex RS especially for robotic applications in cramped conditions. The system guides the energy chain close to the robot arm, and avoids any looping.

The Triflex R energy chain is a product family for robot users and manufacturers and the range comprises of more than one hundred components. Due to this modular approach Igus guarantees that any application can be determined from large-scale welding robots to small handling robots. Triflex R works using the ball and socket principle ("trailer hitch"). Once locked in place, the ball and socket form an extremely mobile connection which combines smooth movements in all three axes and an optimum frictional connection, thus guaranteeing a high tensile strength. Longitudinal axis torsion of up to +/- 380 degrees per metre is possible, and thanks to the integrated stop system, the energy chain provides a minimum bending radius that prevents cables being overstressed during both radial and torsional movements. Finally, the general flexibility of the whole system makes robot teaching and programming simple. 

The newly developed universal module Triflex RS has been designed mainly for applications that have to be solved using very little space. Triflex RS can be mounted directly to all standard fastening holes in most robots. Project planning is not usually necessary as the required free-moving length of energy chain is added to the front area of the robot and fastened to the sixth axis by means of a mounting bracket. Due to the compact design height, the system can even be used if there is a valve cluster or distributor box above the third axis, for example.

The lubricant-free Triflex-R energy chain is integrally spring-loaded. The use of fibre rods inserted in the chain means that pre-tension is generated automatically. The spring mechanism works in a similar way to a fishing rod and maintains tension in the energy chain. This means that the chain is always kept close to the robot arm even during complex movements and also the chain loops around the robot head are avoided.

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