The Renfrew, UK, facility of Doosan Babcock is benefiting from the use of HepcoMotion’s Profile Driven Unit (PDU2) technology on a machine designed to deliver automated NDT (non-destructive testing) capability. Devised as an enhancement to existing manipulators, the PDU2 and PDU2M belt-driven linear motion systems are providing movement in three axes along with precise positioning.
Robin Hague, Project Engineer NDT, says: “The main aim was to enhance our existing NDT capability by creating a multi-purpose, thee-axis manipulator. This enables us to quickly develop ultrasonic techniques without having to spend time creating an experimental mechanical set-up.”
These techniques are typically employed in the inspection and health monitoring of critical hardware in power stations and oil & gas installations.
Mr Hague says: “The manipulator can precisely position and translate an ultrasonic probe anywhere within a one-metre inspection volume. We have successfully used HepcoMotion products many times over the years and knew they offered the PDU2s.”
Among the main requirements for the drive units was rigidity and stiffness in each axis, as this would help deliver the all-important positional repeatability. Although the components being inspected are relatively light, they can measure up to 1m in size and vary tremendously in shape.
Fortunately for Doosan Babcock, there are many advantages to specifying HepcoMotion PDU2s. For instance, not only is a complete system available from a single source (including motor connecting kits and connecting plates, for example), but the units are well suited to the versatility required in this particular application. The PDU2s are also entirely maintenance free and supplied factory set, making them suitable for many multi-axis machine applications.
HepcoMotion’s recently released PDU2M in fact delivers a 200 per cent increase in moment load capacity and 1000 per cent uplift in moment load stiffness compared with a standard PDU2, and direct load capacity is 50 per cent greater. Key to this ability is the ultra-high performance HepcoMotion Herculane wheels, which run virtually friction-free on the inside of the profile providing stable support for the carriage plate.
The unit is available with a number of carriage designs to allow the rapid and straightforward build of multi-axis systems with minimal requirements for brackets or other hardware. It is rated for operation at speeds of up to 6m/s and available with a choice of motors providing driving forces up to 280N. The automated NDT machine is now in full operation at the Renfrew site of Doosan Babcock.
For further information about HepcoMotion’s Profile Driven Unit (PDU2) technology, please go to www.hepcomotion.com.