Servo drives for harsh environmental conditions

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An ambient temperature of -46degC is a genuine challenge for any device, let alone a highly complex and precise servo actuator. However, Harmonic Drive has developed the rugged AlopexDrive range to master those very conditions and more, including high shock and vibration loads, rain, dust, temperatures up to 63degC and corrosive atmospheres.

Typical applications for the new series include pan and tilt drives, providing motion for high-precision communications antenna and camera systems. Harmonic Drive equipment has been used in locations as diverse as the Himalayas and South African open pit mines – illustrating the versatility of the new range.

The popular and successful CHA Series served as the inspiration for the robust new actuator. As a result, the AlopexDrive benefits from a high single-stage gear ratio, high-precision and zero backlash Harmonic Drive Gear and a compact yet powerful hollow shaft synchronous motor with feedback system. An optional brake is also offered on the actuators, which are available in six sizes and six ratios from 30 to 160:1, with a maximum torque of 9-647Nm.

An output bearing with high tilting capacity allows direct attachment of heavy payloads without the need for further supports, thereby providing simple and space saving design installations.

The AlopexDrive also incorporates integrated surface protection to help meet stringent requirements for corrosion resistance. For extended temperature ranges, a special lubricant helps meet the demands of extreme environments. Furthermore, the higher levels of vibration and shock encountered at extreme temperature had special attention paid to them during the design phase. All components are matched and tightly integrated to create a series of actuators that exceed all previous standards.

To adapt to a specific application, the AlopexDrive Series offers many possible configurations of motor windings, motor feedback systems, motor brake, sensors and cables as well as connector options. The motor feedback systems are carefully selected including robust resolvers that are sufficiently accurate for most applications, magnetic and inductive encoders and hall sensors for commutation.

Further details about the AlopexDrive range can be found at

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