Actuators offer automation flexibility

Paul Boughton
MiniTec UK Limited has launched a new range of linear positioning actuators based on and completely compatible with its ProfileSystem range of machine framing and building components.

The precision ballscrew driven Linearmodul LMS provides up to 1400mm of travel and is housed in a 90 x 90mm extruded aluminium profile with standard T-slots on 45mm centres that utilise MiniTec's wide range of interfacing and interconnection components.

The lateral slots also provide a fixing point for datum sensors and limit switches and the modular design includes a stainless steel barrier strip and cover arrangement that seals and protects the internal moving parts of the actuator.

Aimed at applications where accuracy, durability and minimum installation space are important selection criteria, the LMS will suit large area gantry, pick and place and robotic handling systems - as part of a complete MiniTec machine frame system - or as separate components, complete with MiniTec supplied motors, drives and motion controls.

The LMS is delivered as standard with lubricated-for-life dual linear rail ball bearings with matched carriages that support loads in all directions for speeds of up to 1.6 metres per second with the 16 mm diameter x 16 mm pitch ballscrew option.

Other ballscrew pitch options include 4, 5 and 10 mm variants, and a T7 accuracy grade option features a preloaded nut system for 0.04mm axial play and repeatability to 52 microns per 300mm. An acme screw version is also available, with a further choice of a preloaded nut arrangement for increased precision.

The flexibility built into the range also extends to the choice of bearing system. The standard bearing system may be replaced with dual heavy-duty recirculating linear rail guides with four carriages, rated at a 10,000 km service life. Alternatively, a novel low-friction plastic bushing version can be supplied for an extremely economical positioning solution.

The LMS actuator has a 10mm diameter drive spigot which can be fitted with a pulley for belt drives, adapter plates with flexible couplings for servo or stepper motors, or as a manual hand-wheel drive.

MiniTec’s ProfileSystem range of machine framing and machine building components includes both extruded aluminium and formed stainless steel profiles and is characterised by the unique Powerlock fastening system that allows rapid assembly with no pre-machining - for proven faster assembly times than competitive systems and  much reduced profile wastage with profile re-usability.

The range includes a vast collection of ancillary components from panels, wheels and hinges to sensors and process control parts that are combined with automation and motion control components such as the new LMS Linearmodul actuators.

The modularity and flexibility built into ProfileSystem allows the structural base and functional components that OEMs and machine builders can adapt, both economically and quickly, to their own specialist area for applications that include safety and guarding systems, test and assembly stands, workbenches, parts conveyor and parts handling machinery, automated manufacturing and test equipment, special fixtures and display consoles, multi-axis linear systems, and even complex production assembly and test plant.

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