HepcoMotion is launching its PRT2 "1-Trak" linear motion and track system. While conventional track technology limits track paths to simple combinations of straights and constant-radius curves, "1-Trak" enables any conceivable 2D shape to be realised.
The entire track element of HepcoMotion "1-Trak" is manufactured from a single piece of steel, which can include a base plate. Such is its strength and accuracy, it can be used as a key structural element of the machine. The product can be customised with holes, slots and other features to eliminate the time and cost involved in designing a separate mounting plate for the track system, and it can be supplied mounted to a HepcoMotion MCS frame as the basis for a complete automation system.
As there are no joints, HepcoMotion "1-Trak" systems are completely seamless and free-running with no possibility of misalignment during installation or in service. Smoother, quieter motion is also achieved.
In addition to facilitating a high degree of versatility in track configuration, the three-bearing geometry combined with the track shape ensures that the carriages exhibit zero play everywhere on the circuit. This is a key benefit compared with other tracks where there is 'lift off' of the carriage from the track between straight and curved sections.
According to the company, HepcoMotion "1-Trak" circuits can accommodate much tighter bends than is possible with other systems. This saves space and costs, so manufacturers can optimise their production layout. The three-bearing carriages also provide a simple, low-cost alternative to bogie carriages that are the common choice when the system includes both right- and left-hand bends.
Where the application involves higher moment loads, the HepcoMotion "1-Trak" is also available in a wide-track section. Wide slide sections with widely-spaced bearings both across and along the carriage can also be supplied to create a very rigid platform and increased moment load capacity.
Track systems can be specified with a vee-profile guide section of any size to suit bearings from the extensive HepcoMotion PRT2 or Heavy Duty HDS2 ranges from 13mm to 150mm in diameter. Carriages can carry loads from 67 to 51,000N, and tracks can be made up to 5.5 x 1m or 1.9m square. The "1-Trak" range also includes corrosion-resistant versions as standard.
High-strength gear drive
A rack-and-pinion driven carriage is another standard HepcoMotion"1-Trak" option. Its design permits a correct and constant mesh between the pinion and rack around the entire circuit. It eliminates the need for the pinion to be sprung against the rack to compensate for varying engagement, which simplifies the carriage design, reduces cost and increases system driving forces.
The gear teeth on the track are precision machined and surface hardened to provide excellent strength and durability. Gears are available from MOD 1.5 to MOD 10 and beyond, depending on the application's requirements. The system designer can specify pinions alone, a carriage complete with pinion and drive flange, or with pinions mounted onto a gearbox or geared motor.
Also within the new product range is HepcoMotion "1-Trak" with a rectangular flat track profile and track roller carriages. This option is recommended for use when two track systems are mounted in parallel. It permits the roller bearings on one side to 'float' axially while the other side is fixed and guided by the vee bearings. This type of configuration compensates for parallelism tolerances, and eliminates the excessive loading and binding that can occur when two sets of bearings are over-constrained and 'fight' each other.