MachineBuilding.net Technical Articles Index
Proven ways to maximise spring life
Spring life is a very important factor to consider in the design and specification process because springs are often vital components within an assembly where failure may lead to significant consequences. Chris Petts at Lee Spring offers the following thoughts on the subject.
Regenerative braking: the road to energy efficiency starts here
Did you know the invention of robots dates back to XVth century? When Leonardo da Vinci explored the idea of the human body as a machine, he came up with a robotic knight – medieval armour designed with gears, wheels, pulleys and cables that allowed it to move its arms and legs. Premature inventions like this one populate the engineering landscape to this day, often when it comes to energy-saving technologies such as regenerative braking. Here, Tony Young, owner director of supply and repair specialist CP Automation, explains how easy it can be to make industrial applications more energy efficient by using regenerative braking.
Virtual and augmented reality in manufacturing
The Oculus Rift, Microsoft HoloLens and even Google Cardboard are a far stretch from the first virtual reality (VR) headset, created in 1968 by computer scientist, Ivan Sutherland. The concoction was called the sword of Damocles and, because of its formidable size and weight, had to be anchored to the ceiling so it didn’t crush the user. Almost 50 years later, we are only now seeing VR and augmented reality (AR) being used in manufacturing environments. Here Leroy Spence, head of sales development at industrial spares supplier EU Automation, looks at how AR and VR are changing the world of manufacturing.
Resistor liquid cooling boosts 3.3kV medium voltage loads
In motor-driven applications like cranes, lifts, hoists and conveyors, air cooled resistors are common, but in medium-voltage, high-power applications liquid cooling wins out. A medium voltage drive running off a 3.3kV supply to turn a 500kW motor will put a severe heating load on the application’s power transistors – hence the need for water cooling, as David Atkins, projects director at Cressall Resistors explains.
Cobots, high precision and the Internet of Robot Things (IoRT)
The biggest trends in the robotics industry include collaborative robots (Cobots), a move towards high-precision applications and the rise of the Internet of Robot Things (IoRT). Richard Hurst, product manager at Harmonic Drive AG, looks at the latest technological advancements that are enabling these trends to move from the periphery of the industry into the mainstream.
Alternatives to storing spare industrial stock
In the US alone, businesses and consumers spend approximately the same amount on duplicates of products they already own. Here, Jonathan Wilkins, marketing director of obsolete industrial parts supplier EU Automation discusses the issues of storing spare industrial stock and the alternatives available for manufacturers.
Material developments in spring production
What lies ahead in the realm of spring manufacture? Chris Petts, M.D. of Lee Spring Ltd discusses material developments in spring production and the use of Elgiloy in industrial springs
SCADA in the next 30 years
Industrial SCADA is undergoing a step change right now, with the move from proprietary code to next generation technologies such as compatibility with SQL Databases and Cloud Computing .NET, OPC UA and HTML5. This is part of moving towards a more connected world and a natural progression oriented towards technologies of the immediate future. Paul Hurst, MD independent UK SCADA and HMI vendor Products4Automation (P4A), talks about the future of SCADA.