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NOVEMBER 2018 machinedesign.com

Will Robots
? p32

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November 2018 VOLUME 90, ISSUE 11

22 What’s the Difference Between Metal 3D
Printing Processes?
How do you know what type of metal 3D printing to use for an application?
Find out some of the key differences and some basic selection criteria.

32 Will Robots Replace Stuntmen?
Researchers are in the process of creating some extremely mobile robots.

40 5 Ways You Can Use 3D Printing to Create a Prototype

The article discusses the best options for using 3D printing to create a
prototype of your product.

44 Are Your Machine Safety Systems Optimized for Cost

and Compliance?
A standards-based design approach can right-size a safety system to its
required performance level.

48 How to Wirelessly Charge at a Distance

With companies producing far-feld wireless charging, we stop to look at
the physics, validity, and other options for mobile or remote power.

56 Augmenting the Future with AR, Wearables, and

Mobile Devices
How do you make sense of these smart technologies to fuel your strategic
transformation, produce the most value possible, and solve real business

62 In Praise of Simulation—and Why You Should Be Using It

Every organization, and the design engineers in those organizations, can
get value from simulation tools.

76 Special Content: Best of 2018 OEM

The best of 2018 OEM content gathers educational materials from some of
the leading manufacturers in the engineering industry.

What’s the
Difference Between


Printed in U.S.A., Copyright © 2018. Informa Media, Inc. All rights reserved. MACHINE plus tax, and Int’l $20.00 per issue. OEM Handbook and Supplier Directory, $50.00 Digital subscription rates: U.S.: $69/year. Canada/Mexico: $79/year. All other countries:
DESIGN (ISSN 0024-9114) is published monthly by Informa Media, Inc., 9800 Metcalf plus tax. Prepaid subscription: Informa Media Inc. (MACHINE DESIGN), P.O. Box 2100, $99/year. Print/Digital combo subscription rates: U.S.: $174/year; $249/two years.
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years. Cost for back issues are U.S. $10.00 per copy plus tax, Canada $15.00 per issue Canada return address: IMEX Global Solutions, P.O. Box 25542, London, Ont., N6C 6B2. P.O. Box 2100, Skokie, IL 60076-7800.


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Is the Engineering The Concerns (and

Profession Still a Possible Solutions) of IT in
“Good” Job? Government
Kicking of our yearly Salary and Career Survey will be a high- Te reality for many government agencies is that modernizing
lighted focus on job satisfaction. How happy are engineers in information systems is becoming the law of the land, and
the workplace, what could be better, and is engineering still all agencies can no longer aford to operate in the same old ways.
that it’s cracked up to be?
https://www.machinedesign.com/learning-resources/ https://www.machinedesign.com/community/concerns-and-
engineering-profession-still-good-job possible-solutions-it-government

Supercritical C02: Avoid the “7 Deadly Sins”

The Path to Less Expensive, of IoT Product Development
“Greener” Energy IoT-enabled products are creating a fundamental shif in how
business is done, altering the landscape of how products are
Generating electricity from heat could become more efcient, designed and delivered to customers.
more compact, and less costly.
https://www.machinedesign.com/mechanical/supercritical-co2- https://www.machinedesign.com/industrial-automation/avoid-
path-less-expensive-greener-energy 7-deadly-sins-iot-product-development


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Integrate Gripping, Compliance and Tooling

Protection in One Compact Assembly What’s the
Between U.S.
and EU IoT?
TOOLING PROTECTION A brief look at IoT, culture, and what that means for the

fter attending IMTS follow. This solutions- or goal-driven
in the U.S. and the IoT approach might yield a more intrusive

Solutions World Con- integration, but it is what is necessary to
gress (IoTSWC) in obtain a goal.

Barcelona, I noticed some differences Ultimately, the vibe I felt was that the
in how the U.S. views technology com- U.S. views the IoT as a product, whereas

pared to the European Union. Of course, the EU sees it more as a utility. At the
how we use technology can offer insight IoTSWC there was the IoT of saving the
into what a particular society views as Beluga whales and honeybees. The U.S.
important. It should be pointed out that has IoT for agriculture, but it is geared
IMTS is a manufacturing show, while toward saving money on pesticides
the IoTSWC is an Internet of Things while increasing crop yield. The benefit
solutions show, but there are still take- to the environment seems more like a
aways on how different areas of the bonus or afterthought. It almost seems
world view IoT. like the U.S. is more Steve Jobs and the
Discover t e Benefits! IMTS hosts many companies, and EU is more Steve Wozniak.
Control ¥ Protection ¥ Strength ¥ Flexibility many of them have some connected or This isn’t a startling revelation. The
Specify PFA Self-Locking & Braking Cylinders! IoT device. There was a focus on indi- U.S. is more litigious and money-orient-
SELF LOCKING CYLINDER vidual machines, or lines, with a gen- ed than the EU, and I’m not saying that
• Rod interrupt lock - no slipping eral goal of achieving the fastest or least- that’s necessarily for the worse. However,
• Save $$$$ with a smaller cylinder intrusive integration with the largest when conducting business in different
• Simplify machine operation - 2 port design return on investment (ROI). In short, cultures it is important to understand
• Save space - 15x load capacity
• Great for anvil/staking applications U.S. IoT looks for the biggest points of how each of us are viewing technology.
money, or specific bottlenecks associ- The U.S. is known for individualism and
BRAKING CYLINDER ated with money or production loss. EU is more communal, and it’s interest-
• Brake integrated and Inside Rod
This top-down approach makes some of ing to see how this comes through both
• Brake and hold loads at any position
• Brake activates on loss of pressure these IoT products a no-brainer. in our tech and manufacturing.
The IoTSWC show, in contrast, fea- That being said, it’s also interesting to
tures IoT solutions as test beds. There consider the predictions that, with the
is still an eye toward increasing produc- advent of automation, the population
tion and revenue, but the thought pro- will eventually outgrow the number of
cess that goes into the design is different available jobs. At that point, a new social
from what you see in the U.S. While ease contract will be needed, with communi-
f inc co of integration and ROI are important,
the focus in with EU companies seem
ty taking precedence over individualism
out of necessity. It will be an interesting
N118 W18251 Bunsen Drive to find a solution, then let the money socioeconomic process to observe.
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A Fond Farewell to
Rethink Robotics, one of the biggest names in the cobot game and creators of cobots
Baxter and Sawyer, closed its doors abruptly last week.What does that mean for the rest
of the cobot industry?

ast week Rethink Robotics, a NlzXXX6Nimg yDZYao0TlfO/story. everyone in the robotics space knew
major player in the collaborative html), sales were down for both robots, of Rethink Robotics. The company’s
robotics world, closed up shop abruptly. and the company was trying to sell the robots were some of the first cobots on
The company’s robots Baxter and company quickly and quietly. According the market, easily recognizable, and
Sawyer were easily recognizable to to Rethink’s chief executive, Scott Eckert, further distinguished by their pro-
any engineer, thanks to their big eyes the company had been running low gramming ease. Each had a heads-up
and distinct red exteriors. But while on cash and at the very last minute, a display that allowed the user to interact
the robots were major standouts, potential buyer backed out. with the robot on the spot—no need to
the y weren’t s elling. As rep or ted Rethink Robotics was founded in connect with a computer or a pendant
by the Boston Globe (https://www. 2008 by Rodney Brooks, a professor at device.
bostonglobe.com/business/2018/10/03/ the Massachusetts Institute of Technol- Rethink’s trouble sparked when a
robot-pioneer-rethink-shuts-down/ ogy and co-founder of iRobot. Most specialized order for a China distribu-

Baxter and Sawyer were the flagship robots of Rethink Robotics.


tor fell through. The company had as evidenced by the large turnout we Personally? I think the cobot market
designed and specialized robots for the have at all of our Collaborative Robot will continue to grow. Besides the obvi-
Chinese market and were suddenly left Conferences, including the (at press ous benefits of having a work environ-
with extra inventory that couldn’t be time) upcoming Collaborative Robots, ment with both human and machine
sold. However, the cobot market has Advanced Vision, and AI Conference elements, cobots are the gateway to a
also become crowded over the last few in Santa Clara, October 24 and 25.” more automated world. We know that
years. The major robotic vendors have
entered the game, including Kuka,
Fanuc, and ABB. Each has their own
version of a cobot and the companies
have a longstanding pedigree in the
automation world.
The cobot space is also dominated
by a longstanding player in the market:
Universal Robots. UR was the first to
enter this space and it shows. It’s hard to
enter an exhibit hall at any conference
these days without seeing a UR cobot.
The company just announced the sale of
its 25,000th cobot last month.
Jeff Burnstein, president of the Asso-
ciation for Advancing Automation (A3),
expressed his gratitude for and admira-
tion of the company. “Rodney Brooks
and Rethink Robotics are important
pioneers in the collaborative robot sec-
tor,” he said. “Like start-ups in all sec-
tors, not everything goes smoothly.
Sometimes early products aren’t exactly
as good as you would like, sometimes
new ideas don’t receive immediate mar-
ket acceptance, and sometimes other
market players gain traction sooner.
Some or all of these factors may have
impacted Rethink.”
Many may ask what this means for
the future of cobots. Considering that
Rethink was one of the first and most
vocal companies in the cobot space,
could the company’s demise indicate a
burst bubble? Some engineers already
considered cobots to be a passing fad,
opining that traditional robots will
always dominate the market.
Burnstein argues the opposite: “In
no way does this slow the develop-
ment or current user excitement about
collaborative robots. We see a strong
and growing demand for informa-
tion on this segment of the market,


automation is coming. IoT and

robotic systems are being widely
adopted across several industries
and cobots are a great entry point
for human workers to grow accus-
tomed to automated systems. They
have and will continue to help us
transition to a more automated
I echo Burnstein’s sentiments in
saying goodbye to Rethink Robotics.
“While Rethink sadly exits the mar-
ket, dozens of other companies from
around the world are entering the
collaborative robot market,” he con-
cludes. “And this interest in collab-
orative robots is fueling global inter-
est in robotics, especially among
small- and medium-sized compa-
nies. We wish the entire Rethink
team the best of luck finding new
positions in the industry and thank
them for all they’ve done to revolu- One of the major benefits of Rethink Robotics’ cobots was the ability to program the robot direct-
tionize the robotics industry.”  ly on the device, without the need for an external computer.

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IF YOU HAVE ever been to Paris, Rome, or oped specifically Valeo cars. All of the data
even New York City, you know the roads collected go into the car’s artificial intel-
are either curvy, difficult to drive with traf- ligence system to help it learn different
fic, or full of people. One of the most diffi- driving scenarios over time.
cult things to manage is the unpredictabil- The AI system can collect the data
ity of it all. This is one of the main reasons from the sensors and analyze them in
that self-driving vehicles have avoided real time. This enables the car to make
major city areas and have tested their the correct driving decisions, despite
cars in more remote locations. However, the surrounding conditions. According
this year’s Paris Motor Show changed to Valeo, “The vehicle’s self-learning
all that: Valeo demonstrated its new au- capabilities, based on deep learning,
tonomous car, the first time a self-driving play a fundamental role. For example, the
car has ever been tested on the streets vehicle can:
of Paris. • Display a 3D model of surrounding
Valeo’s car is equipped with a series vehicles and predict their trajecto-
of sensors specially developed by the ries, including those not in its imme-
company. These includes ultrasonic sen- diate field of vision;
sors, cameras, radars, and eight Valeo • Navigate in a precise and robust
SCALA laser scanners—a proprietary manner, thanks to a geolocation
system which is the only mass-produced and mapping system developed
Light Detection and Ranging (LiDAR) by Valeo, which uses the Valeo
technology on the market today devel- SCALA® laser scanners that are al-


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in parking garages, and in other has operated within the city.
environments where a GPS signal
would be lost;
• Learn about the road infrastructure,
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and other road users (pedestrians, bi-
cycles, scooters).
Valeo is also demonstrating is electric
vehicle (EV) lineup. The manufacturer has
developed an EV urban prototype pow-
ered by a 48 V motor. The car can reach by 2020 or 2025. The company also de- take over the vehicle once the battery has
up to 100 km/h (62 mph) with a range of buted its first plug-in hybrid at the low volt- been depleted.
150 km (93 miles). This is an important age of 48 V. This would make it the world’s Along with autonomous vehicles and
push as many countries around Europe first 48 V plug-in and has a range of 40 km EVs, Valeo debuted its tools for inside
are demanding an all-electric vehicle fleet (25 miles). The combustion engine would the car to help passengers with their

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commute. First is the Safe InSight safety

monitoring system. The system can de-
tect signs of drowsiness from the driver
and help prevent accidents due to tired-
Valeo has also developed digital
tools to help drivers. For example, they
provide a real-time map of air quality in
Paris. The onboard sensors can collect
data on the air quality in its environment.
The sensors are able to collect informa-
tion on the concentration levels of six
pollutants: fine particles (PM 10 and PM
2.5), carbon monoxide, nitrogen dioxide,
sulfur dioxide and ozone. The data is
then transmitted into the cloud for air
quality mapping.
The mapping is being conducted in
partnership with ARIA and in the future Along with a fleet of self-driving cars and electric vehicles, Valeo offers driver assistance
can help drivers avoid certain areas that safety systems to help reduce accidents.
are experience peak pollution spikes. Va-
leo offers a “Clean Road” app that can ters to be traveled and how the air quality leo is setting itself up to be a major player
determine the best route in terms of air along the way will impact travel time. With in the future of smart automotive. 
quality. It calculates the number of kilome- this toolset, EVs, and self-driving cars, Va- (News continues on page 71)

1 st

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What’s the Difference?
JEFF KERNS | Technical Editor

What’s the Difference Between

Metal 3D Printing
How do you know what type of metal 3D
printing to use for an application? Find
out some of the key differences and some
basic selection criteria.

aterials and processes is often a fresh-
man level course in college. With the
expansion of new technology, some
engineers might find a refresher course
that includes additive manufacturing, also called 3D printing,
valuable. It can be difficult when looking for new solutions
and become inundated with new technology.
This article will mention some of the difference between
metal 3D printing processes and selection criteria to help
understand this technology better. This does not cover all the New technology is reducing the cost of metal 3D printing. This lower
processes. There is a lot of great research happening in this barrier to entry is expanding the technology to more industries and
area, but the following introduces some of the more common offering a competitive edge to companies that understand the inno-
processes. vative process.

SLS diagram: While some people might think support structures aren’t needed, supports can reduce low spots that form from materials
sintered on top of unsupported powder. (By Materialgeeza - Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=4032088)


Always the Right Move

One Choice for All

Controlling a robot arm, a servo axis, a VFD drive
or a custom robotic mechanism is all the same
task for an MP3300iec machine controller. It uses
familiar IEC61131-3 and PLCopen programming
to operate them all, and will even allow you to
substitute one motion device for another without

Looking for motion control that can change and

grow as readily as your machines do? Move to
the MP3300iec by contacting your Yaskawa

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What’s the Difference?

First, I always suggest checking with contamination. The inert gas might mize cooling rates. According to an arti-
a professional, and specifically one that change based on what will react with the cle published by the National Center for
works with multiple processes. For material being processed. In addition, Biotechnology, SLM’s important process
example, if a service bureau only has the build plate can be heated to mini- parameters are:
electron beam melting (EBM), it might
say that it can processes soft metals like
magnesium (Mg)or zinc (Zn) alloys.
While it is possible, the high tempera-
tures of EBM might not be the best for
your specific application. Mg/Zn may
even vaporize at EBM processing tem-
peratures. Basically, a company that only
offers EBM will find a way to make the
process work, but it might not be the
best solution.

When it comes to metal 3D printing,
the most used technology is powder bed
process. There are multiple powder bed DMLS Material Strength (Credit: Protolabs)
processes such as binder jetting (BDJ),
selective laser melting (SLM), and EBM.
Other processes might say selective
laser sintering, but they may not be the
same as selective laser melting. Sintering
normally uses a lower power laser. The
energy is enough to compact, but not
melt the powder. This might also be a
term that is lost in hype and marketing,
so it is important to understand whether
a company offers sintering, melting, or
Metal sintering, also called direct met-
al laser sintering (DMLS), can reduce
internal stresses cause by excessive heat.
Without the thermal stresses caused by DMLS Material Elongation (Credit: Protolabs)
some of the other processes, including
3D printing and traditional, DMLS parts
are capable of operating in the aerospace
and automotive industry for applications
that may see high stresses. DMLS can
also eliminate post-thermal processing
such as annealing. The strength, elonga-
tion, and hardness charts show an idea of
common materials and material proper-
ties associated with DMLS.
Selective laser melting (SLM) melts
selected sections of material together,
then adds another layer of powder to
repeat the process. Performing this pro-
cess in a closed inert environment that
is often pressurized eliminates oxygen DMLS Material Rockwell Hardness (Credit: Protolabs)



• Laser power LLED=P/v
• Laser scan speed Where P = laser power (W), and v =
• Hatch distance scan speed (mm/s)
• Hatch overlaps
• Scanning pattern This, along with the hatching space and
layer height, will influence the densi-
According to the NCBI paper, SLM fication of a part. A paper from Ohio
is regarded as the most versatile AM Link says a hatch overlap is necessary
process because it can process a wide for a solid sample, and in most SLM pro-
spectrum of materials, including alu- cesses an overlap of at least 20% pro- TEN FUNDAMENTAL REASONS
minum, titanium, iron, nickel, cobalt, duced better quality samples. The paper WHY WE SHOULD BE YOUR FIRST CHOICE
copper-based alloys, and their com- continues saying the scanning patterns
posites. is the design or orientation of the hatch-
Hollow shaft ranges from 1/4” to 4.5”
The laser power, scan speed, and lay- es between layers, and can also affect
er height will probably be determined bonding between layers. Unbreakable code discs made in house
by the manufacturer of the machine. Customized designs and niche solutions
However, this will tell you what type of ATEX certified Explosion proof encoders
diameters and scan speed a machine is Exeeding industry durability standards
capable of. The linear laser energy den-
Flexible production / rapid delivery
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Worldwide sales & support
meter (J/mm). LLED estimates the laser
energy input to melt the powder layer. Manufacturing in Canada and Germany

Continuous product development

Schematic diagram of SLM process
parameters. (Credit: Ohiolink.edu)

Industrial Encoder Corporation

What’s the Difference?

Electron Beam Melting (EBM) is

similar to SLM, but an electron beam
is used instead of a laser. Bed tempera-
tures are higher (~870 K), and the EBM
environment is performed in a vacuum
rather than the Inert gas used in SLM.
One drawback to EBM is that is involves
more process parameters that means
the process will take more expertise and
time to optimize. The NCBI paper out-
line the following parameters involved
in the EBM process:

• Beam power
• Beam scanning velocity
• Beam focus 6-axis robots are increasingly being used in many industries. These types of arms have
• Beam diameter printed extruded plastic. However, by taking advantage of binder jetting with advance robot-
• Beam line spacing ics, Viridis prints casting molds. While an indirect way of using 3D printing for metal parts, it
• Plate temperature saves time and cost of traditional molds.
• Pre-heat temperature (including
the repetitions, speed, and power
of the beam)
• Contour strategies
• Scan strategy

The complexity of the process limits

EBM materials. EBM has been known to
use Ti grade 2, Ti6Al4V, Inconel 718, and
CoCrMo. SLM cannot produce many
brittle materials such as intermetallics
because its high cooling rate will cause
internal stresses. Longer cooling times
can be both a pro and a con for EBM. It can handle metals and alloys, MATERIALS
Binder jetting (BDJ) is a powder bed including aluminum, copper, iron, Soft materials. There are design
process, but instead of lasers or electron nickel, and cobalt-based alloys. In requirements that may lean towards a
beams, a binder agent holds the pow- addition, BDJ can process ceramics, type of material. From the previous exam-
der together. A (green) part is produced including glass, sand, and graphite. ple, binder jetting (BDJ), selective laser
faster than any of the other powder BDJ is said to work with any powder melting (SLM), and EBM are all competi-
bed processes, but this is only the first that allows for color printing. For tive when considering metals/composites.
step. Post-processing—such as curing, applications BDJ is often not suit- However, EBM temperatures can exceed
de-powdering, sintering, infiltration, able for structural applications due 870 K and are a concern if a material has a
annealing, and finishing the part—will to porosity that may occur from the low boiling point, such as Al/Mg/Zn.
often take more time than creating the conventional sintering process. Sinter- The ProX DMP 320 claims to offer
first green part. ing also means green parts that are not high throughput and high-quality parts
6-axis robots are increasingly being near net tolerance. There is software from the most challenging alloys. While
used in many industries. These types of the will compensate for shrinkage dur- the name indicates DMP meaning direct
arms have printed extruded plastic. How- ing processing, and scale green parts metal printing, it doesn’t necessar-
ever, by taking advantage of binder jet- accordingly. However, it is imperative ily indicate which process it uses. The
ting with advance robotics, Viridis prints that a designer understand whether information on the website does say
casting molds. While an indirect way of software they are using will scale for loose metal particles are melted togeth-
using 3D printing to generate metal parts, shrinkage or not. Above are some fur- er, indicating a selective laser melting
it saves time and cost of traditional molds. ther pros and cons for BDJ. powder bed process.


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Harmonic Drive is a registered trademark of Harmonic Drive LLC. Valkyrie image courtesy of NASA.
What’s the Difference?

Harder materials. While EBM might well, but for TiAl, intermetallic, or brittle High entropy alloys (HEA). Gener-
not be great for aluminum, if you add metals, a high cooling rate can create ally considered to be brittle and to con-
some titanium it might change which internal stresses and cracks. The pro- tain more than three of four elements
process you want to use. For TiAl or hard cessing and cooling temperature can be in equi-atomic configuration with a
intermetallic, all three processes will controlled in SLM, but TiAl and inter- range of melting points, it can difficult
work. However, SLM has a high cool- metallic materials make BDJ and EBM to processes these materials with any
ing rate. Al-based alloys that processes a better choice depending on available fusion method. Therefore, HEA mate-
between 473 K and 673 K might work technology capabilities and application. rials are an obvious choice for the BDJ
process. It isn’t impossible to process
HEAs with EBM or SLM, but it is not
widely used.

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Strong attachments in thin sheets.

PEM® brand fasteners keep loose parts to a minimum since the fastener
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types, styles
styles, sizes and mounting types to meet most
application requirements.

The ProX DMP 320 claims to offer high

throughput and high-quality parts from the
most challenging alloys. While the name
indicates DMP meaning direct metal print-
ing, it doesnÕt necessarily indicate which
process it uses. The information on the
website does say loose metal particles are
melted together, indicating a selective laser
melting powder bed process.

Crystalline materials. There are

Designs for all Install into: some basics of materials that easily
applications: • Steel carry over into 3D printing. Crystal-
• Locking threads • Stainless Steel line materials crystalize based on their
• Right angle threads • Aluminum
exposure to heat, so they can’t work
• Floating threads • PC Boards
in an EBM process because the tem-
• Unthreaded
• Snap attachment Mounting styles: To install, simply: peratures are too high. While BDJ
• Flush mounted • Self-clinching 1. Punch Hole processes at low temperatures, and the
• Blind threads • Broaching 2. Insert Fastener de-binding and sintering processes are
• Concealed heads • Surface mount 3. Press Into Place lower than EBM, the thermal processes
• Cable mount • Flare takes long enough to crystalize materi-
• Captive screws • Weld als. SLM involves heat, but it has a high
• Micro threads cooling rate that can prevent materials
from crystallizing.
The process selected might also vary
Free PEMSpec™ app now available ©2017
the material properties. SLM has shown
that it can tune Al-12Si yield strength
between 235 and 290 MPa, ultimate



November 29, 2018 | 2:00pm ET
Registration URL: http://comsol.com/c/7qw2

Wind turbine blade. Visualization of the shell local coordinate system (top) and the von Mises stress in the skin (middle) and spars (bottom).

In this webinar, we will show how to model SPEAKER:
layered composite structures. Common examples Pawan Soami, Product Manager, COMSOL
of composite materials include fiber-reinforced
plastic, laminated plates, and sandwich panels,
all of which are widely used in the manufacturing Pawan Soami, Product
of aircraf and spacecraf components, wind Manager, COMSOL
turbine blades, and other structures.
Pawan Soami is the prod-
We will discuss two approaches that accurately uct manager for the Mul-
tibody Dynamics Module.
model composite shells: layerwise theory and
He has been working with
equivalent single layer theory. In addition
COMSOL in the Bangalore
to standard structural analyses (such as ofice since 2010. He re-
stationary, eigenfrequency, transient, and ceived his master’s degree
frequency domain), the presentation will go over in aerospace engineering
micromechanical, first-ply failure, and linear at the Indian Institute of
buckling analyses. We will also demonstrate how Science, Bangalore.
to include various physical phenomena, such as
heat transfer, electromagnetics, acoustics, and
fluid flow, in a composite laminate model. A live
demo in the COMSOL Multiphysics® sofware will
show simulation results for the through-thickness
and ply-wise stress distribution in the composite
laminate. The webinar will conclude with a Q&A

Hosted with
What’s the Difference?


This table shows the mechanical property difference of Ti6Al4V when processed with EBM
and SLM. SLM’s high cooling creates a better martensitic structure that increases the
strength and brittleness of the material.

strength between 220 and 460 MPa, general, Protolabs, Stratasys, 3D Hubs,
and ductility between 2.8% and 9.5% in and Xometry (and of course, Machine
tension. Design) are good sources for ungated
When considering cooling temper- content.
ature, it should be noted the powder I’ve also found great technical papers.
bed will need to cool before parts can You can use Google Scholar to search
be removed. Higher temperatures will exclusively for technical journals and
increase the time between printing and scholarly articles. They often want you
removal. In the case of EBM, a pow- to pay to access them, but there is a way
der bed may need to sit overnight. This to get around this. You can often read
time slows production and can increase the abstract, and maybe a page or two
Accurate Position Feedback
part cost. to determine if it’s a paper you want to
for Servo or Stepper Motors read, or the one that might answer your
SELECTION CRITERIA question. Then look for the authors and
n Same form-factor as US Digital There are several things to consider do an internet search for their contact
or Broadcom incremental when selecting the right process and information.
encoders. material. The NCBI and Stratasys both I’ve been surprised by the authors I
have seven selection criteria, but they was able to find, and if I can find them
n Easy upgrade to absolute are not entirely the same. Stratasys they normally respond with a full copy
position feedback for superior includes polymer 3D printing into of their paper. Most scholarly journals
its consideration in Identifying the that charge keep 100% of the money, so
position control.
Best 3D-Printing Process for Your the professor isn’t losing money send-
n Rugged magnetic measurement Applications, from which this list was ing a copy to you. They might also have
technology for long, compiled. some additional insight to any questions
maintenance-free service lives. It can be hard to find good infor- you have.
mation on 3D printing, as internet If you have any comments or ques-
n Multi-turn measurement range searches tend to be crowded with the tions, feel free to reach out to me at jeff.
with Wiegand energy harvesting hype surrounding the processes. In kerns@informa.com.
technology - no backup batteries



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Motion Control
JEFF KERNS | Technical Editor

Will Robots Replace

Researchers are in the process of creating some extremely mobile robots.

s y o u’r e n o d o u b t
aware, cat videos have
been dominating the
internet for years. But
cat exploits are also of keen interest to
scientists, and not just for their enter-
tainment value: They have been doc-
umenting cats’ ability to land on their
feet, so as to gain a better understanding
of how to control movement in freefall.
The ability to use electronics to con-
trol actuators is basic robotics. Having
more control often means the robot can
do more tasks, and more complex tasks.
For example, having robots walk opens
a robot’s ability to navigate terrain that
robots on wheels might not be able to.
Gyroscopes and accelerometers register
real-time data, where and how to shift
weight and place feet in order to not fall.
However, what if a robot did fall, or
walked off a cliff? Could it rotate like a
cat to land on its feet? This would pro-
tect the robot, its electronics, and any
cargo its carrying (and it would prob-
ably look really cool).

Acrobatic robots may have started
with cats, but subsequently progressed
to a BRICK. The Binary Robotic Iner-
tially Controlled bricK received a lot of
Top: exploded schematic of prototype components: A) sensing (imu and laser rangefinder), attention, and even inspired the con-
computation (microprocessor), and communication (radio); B) release servo; C) weights, struction of other robots to be flung
cable, and spring; D) linear slide; and E) protective shell. Bottom: cutaway view of assembled through the air. A BRICK has a pulley
components (Credit: SemanticScholar.org) that runs a cable to two weights able to



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Mobile Robots

crobatic robots subsequently progressed to a BRICK. The Bina-
ry Robotic Inertially Controlled bricK received a lot of attention,
and even inspired the construction of other robots to be flung through the
air. A BRICK has a pulley that runs a cable to two weights able to slide in a
single axis that rapidly change the moment of inertia of the robot.

slide in a single axis that rapidly change

the moment of inertia of the robot. How
the weights are adjusted is controlled
by a processor receiving data from an
inertial measurement unit and a laser
While the mechanics seem basic, the
software must stay a step ahead of the
falling action. By reacting to the data, the
robot would land irregularly. Using pre-
dictive landing controls made the robot
land in a relatively predictable manner.

Our challenge: Create an object that spins

through the air and achieves a goal orien-
tation at a specific height. (Credit: Sematic-


Final orientations without predictive landing control. Br ins turned on. (Credit: SematicScholar.org)

Final orientations with predictive landing control. (Credit: SematicScholar.org)

PARKOURBOT stores elastic energy in its springy legs;

Another highly reference robot in it automatically releases the energy to
locomotion is the ParkoutBot. A col- “kick off ” the wall during touchdown.
laboration with Carnegie Mellon and Using open-loop climbing motions to
Northwestern University, ParkourBot achieve closed-loop stabilization of
is a simple design consisting of two climbing height, the ParkourBot was
springy legs and a body. A paper pub- able to spring from wall to wall in rela-
lished by Carnegie Mellon’s School of tively predictive motions even when
Computer Science explains how the the distance between the walls was
robot demonstrates simple control laws manipulated.
that can stabilize hopping and control
the running speed and direction of 2D ATLAS
and 3D single-leg hoppers. So robots calculate, predict, and react
The ParkourBot is an efficient and in real time to move in a programmed
dynamic climbing robot. Leg angle and path. As we advance this idea of loco-
spring tension are independently con- motion in robots, we start to see robots
trolled. The robot climbs between two that can run and jump while avoiding
parallel walls by leaping from one wall obstacles on uneven terrain. In 2013
to the other. During flight, the robot Boston Dynamic released Atlas, a robot

Mobile Robots

Yes, this is an air hockey table for science. It provides a near-friction-

less surface for the robot to move on. The table is lifted on one side to
create an inclined plane. This simulates a low-gravity environment for
the robot to work in. (Credit: Carnegie Mellon University, School of Com-
puter Science)

designed to do search-and-rescue tasks funded by DARPA.

While the early prototype was compared to a one-year old
learning to walk, Atlas has progressed. Video was released
from Boston Dynamic of Atlas doing the following:

• 2013 – Learning to walk, open doors, and drive vehicles

for search and rescue
• 2016 – Walking through multiple terrains with obstacle
• 2018 – Running through uneven terrain, jumping over
obstacles, and even doing a back flip

With sensor technology, MEMS, and computing power

we may see more of these locomotion robots, but where?
Already stated was military search and rescue, but in anoth-
er video from Boston Dynamic, Atlas was carrying boxes.
With a load capacity of 20 lb., Atlas could be ideal for basic
labor and warehouse work. However, locomotion robots
might be working behind the scenes in movies and the

From cats to BRICKs to a stick, Disney has developed its
own acrobatic robot. Geared toward answering questions
about how stunts are performed, we have the first generation
of Stickman. Having data on how the human body moves in


In 2011, injuries caused by lifting, pushing, pulling, holding, and carrying costs businesses $14
billion, which was up from $8 billion just two years prior to that in 2009. These injuries and costs
are driving the need for exoskeletons that serve as lift-assistance devices. (Credit: Bureau of
Labor Statistics)

air could assist athletes and gymnasts to • 7 ft. when fully extended, the
perform complex routines or conserve approximate the height of a
energy for better endurance. human stunt performer with
Like a spherical chicken in a vacu- arms raised over his or her head
um, current training is approximated • Actuated by air tanks that store
as disassembly for measuring each the energy
human limb is infeasible. In addition, • Powered by a 12 V lithium
a performer who attempts to make a polymer battery pack powers the
specific change to their approach to a solenoid valves controlling the
stunt might inadvertently change many actuators
variables at once. Finally, performers
watch and approximate joint angles When designing a robot designed to
from video, a difficulty compounded by be flung through the air some design
the fact that many human joints do not requirements considered were:
have a fixed center of rotation relative to
the limbs. • Easy to reconfigure
Enter BRICK 2.0: The first prototype • Fast repair
of Stickman was based off the BRICK • High peak actuator strength and
robot. But changing the moment of power
inertia of a body with sliding weights
verses a joint added a new level of com- Stickman is specifically using T-Slot
plexity. In a paper titled “Stickman: aluminum extr usion to allow for
Towards a Human Scale Acrobatic reconfigurability of various compo-
Robot,” the authors break down what is nents based on incremental findings.
essentially a stick with two joints. The Both ends of the air pistons can adjust
paper described Stickman as: along the length of its links, allowing

Mobile Robots

changes in torque profiles. A large the Arduino Micro controller board. moment of inertia is closely aligned with
extra weight can be added to the top The top link is outfitted with both a the angular momentum vector:
or bottom link to adjust the robot’s LIDAR-Lite v3 laser rangefinder and a
center of mass location and change 6-axis InvenSense ICM 20602 inertial L=Ixω
in moment of inertia. Pneumatic measurement unit which comprise the
actuators were chosen for their high- main inputs to the robot. where I is the principal moment
power density and are actuated with Once in-flight, the physics of motion of inertia around the axis of rotation
solenoid valves that are triggered by are relatively simple. The principal and ω is the angular velocity. If the
moment of inertia changes from I1 to
I2, the change in angular velocity is
given by:

ωnew = (I1 / I2) X ωold

This is simplest if the change in

inertia from one state to another is
smooth, fast, and monotonic, and if the
angular velocity is in good alignment
with the desired axis of rotation.

( h t t p s : / / w w w. y o u t u b e . c o m /

With this information and three laser

rangefinders to gather data, Stickman
was able to land controlled on its “back,”
and rotate from one to multiple flips
each time, landing controlled on its
“back.” While what is presented here
sounds simple, launching Stickman
from a pendulum and having the joints
on stickman act as another pendulum
made the success of Stickman even more
impressive. Just this year, Stickmen got
an upgrade, and there are videos of the
acrobatic machine performing different
stunts with the look of a more humanoid

( h t t p s : / / w w w. y o u t u b e . c o m /

While they might seem simple, these

locomotion robots push the limits
of control, sensing, and fabrication in
ways that could have relevance for all
mobile robots. Robots like Cyberdyne
are helping humans walk, and perhaps
someday we will have them aid in the
Olympics, action films, and theatre,
in addition to complex operations in
hazardous environments.


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3D Printing
WENDY DESSLER | Outreach Manager, Outreachmama

An example of a 3D printer printing an object.

5 Ways You Can Use

3D Printing to
Create a Prototype
The article discusses the best options for using 3D printing to create a prototype of
your product.

D printing is quickly to gain more attention, and it’s expected ment moves towards 3D printing, we
changing the manufac- to be the new normal in the near future. can expect to see these transformations
turing industry all over How exactly is 3D printing used to and improvements.
the globe. Not only is it create prototypes? This guide will dis-
more affordable than ever to create pro- cuss five ways in which this method 1. BETTER DESIGN
totypes, but there is also a greater level differs from the manufacturing of the In the past, prototypes were used as
of flexibility we haven’t seen before. This past, and how these are changes for a way to test designs. While that’s still
model of building products is starting good. As product design and develop- true, there is significantly more room for


flexibility at this stage than ever before printing reduce overall waste of mate- continue to expand into more compre-
thanks to 3D printing. The traditional rials to below 10%, but it also reduces hensive manufacturing efforts until it’s
manufacturing process required distinct carbon emissions substantially. These the main source of products.
stages. These stages all relied on digital are improvements we can all, as a glob-
models, and these came with limitations. al community, get behind. While the 4. HIGHER UTILIZATION
First, the prototype wasn’t able to be majority of 3D printing today is used Manufacturing operations are not
made with models or capabilities similar only for prototypes, this will hopefully known as the most efficient. In the USA
to the final product. This meant there
were fewer opportunities for accu-
rate design and testing. Now, the digi-
tal thread can be used throughout the
entire process, and more accurate, well-
designed models are available thanks to
3D printing.


While we’ve recently come to know
the term SaaS (software-as-a-service), it PRECISION 0.1-100,000 NM.
looks like we need to say hello to anoth-
er term: MaaS. Manufacturing-as-a-ser-
vice is something that bloomed thanks
to 3D printing. We are seeing companies
with infrastructure built to support mul-
tiple design and production efforts for
several clients, all while using the same
3D printing technology.
Companies with rapid tooling servic-
es are becoming the new normal. There
are a lot of resources online that can help
you understand better the process and
find out more about it. Manufacturers
will have quicker upgrades and a greater
ability to produce quality work without
changing their business model. MaaS is
just another way 3D printing has made
manufacturing more accessible.

Everyone today is concerned about
their carbon footprint and reducing
their impact on the environment, espe-
cially manufacturing companies. Gov-
ernments across the globe have begun
to implement stricter laws about waste
and materials. Luckily, changes in effi-
ciency have led to leaner initiatives that
reduce overall waste and create more
usable resources.
Today, the average waste from a tra-
ditional manufacturing encompasses
21% of the materials. Not only does 3D

3D Printing

alone, manufacturing utilization is only printing removes these constraints. 3D printing, we still must acknowledge the
75%. That means one-fourth of the printers can build complex and valuable new challenges. Most notably, there is
materials and processes are not being products as a whole without needing a higher cost for materials and equip-
used efficiently. This is because tradi- any additional design elements. ment that is keeping 3D printing from
tional methods of production include Because there are fewer constraints becoming standard in manufacturing
things like injection molding or die cast- to the design projects, engineers and operations around the globe.
ing. These use specialized systems that designers alike are able to think freely. Despite these costs, technolog y
lack the versatility of 3D printing. We are seeing how companies around pushes forward. 3D printing is being
On the other hand, 3D printers can the globe are building products that used around the world to create new
print up to 20 different types of prod- push the boundaries of what we’ve seen prototypes that benefit everyone. As
ucts. It can also print them rapidly one before. We are building a future of com- more companies look into this type of
after the next without needing to switch plex solutions with a single machine. prototype development, we can only
systems. This is a big improvement One way we’re seeing this impact the expect to see more improvements in
on the traditional model and one that entire population is through the print- this process.
increases the overall utilization rate for ing of medical devices. From titanium
the entire manufacturing industry. skull plates to other medical break- WENDY DESSLER is a super-connector
throughs, we are seeing new technol- who helps businesses find their audience
5. ENCOURAGE INNOVATION ogy spring from 3D printing every day online through outreach, partnerships,
Finally, one of the most important thanks to its ability to create prototypes and networking. She frequently writes
ways 3D printing improves the creation without restraints. about the latest advancements in digital
of prototypes is through the introduc- marketing and focuses her efforts on de-
tion of further innovation. While in the OVERCOMING CHALLENGES veloping customized blogger outreach
traditional process different parts are While there are many improvements plans depending on the industry and
assembled together to create a whole, 3D to the current system thanks to 3D competition.

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Are Your Machine

Safety Systems
Optimized for
Cost and Compliance?
A standards-based design approach can right-size a safety system to its required
performance level.

t happens all the time: Machine
safety systems are built to the
incorrect safety level and create
big problems in production.
Under-designed systems that fall
short of the required safety level can put
workers at risk. They can also gener-
ate big expenses from lost production
time, worker-compensation costs, and
fines. On the other hand, over-designed
systems can lead to unnecessarily com-
plex and expensive machines. These
machines are more difficult to operate,
require more maintenance, may create
nuisance trips, and take up more space
on the plant floor.
So how do machine designers and The Functional Safety Life Cycle can help avoid problems and determine the level of safety
users make sure that safety systems are that is required.
specified, designed, and built to the
proper safety level? UNDERSTAND THE SAFETY LIFE the constructed machine actually achieves
The most important thing they can CYCLE it. Many machine builders simply don’t
do is follow the Functional Safety Life There’s a recurring theme for why know how to correctly identify, realize, or
Cycle to precisely define and meet their many machine safety systems are built verify the required PL in their offerings.
safety performance requirements. And to the incorrect safety level: uncertainty. The Functional Safety Life Cycle can
as part of this optimization process, Sometimes, end users specify a safe- help avoid these problems. It outlines
they should also be looking for ways ty system to the highest possible per- a rigorous, systematic set of processes
to maximize their safety system’s per- formance level (PL) because they don’t for assessing, mitigating, and verifying
formance to realize additional business know what level is actually required. Or, machine-safety systems.
value beyond injury reduction or com- they may request a specific PL in a new This can help confirm machines are
pliance. machine but don’t know how to verify that designed and built to the proper safety


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Machine Safety Systems

level. And it can help set clear expecta- 5. Maintain and improve. Change These tools can help engineers select the
tions for what’s required in a machine- management to maintain compliance right safety devices, verify that a safety
safety system for both machine design- over the life of the machine. system meets all requirements, and docu-
ers and end users. By following these steps, engineers can ment the process to help achieve com-
The Functional Safety Life Cycle is precisely design and build safety systems pliance. Pre-engineered safety-function
defined in the IEC 61508 standard and to the right safety level while avoiding documents can also give engineers guid-
involves five steps: unnecessary cost and complexity. ance for incorporating proven safety
1. Risk or safety assessment. Per- Consider a machine end user who has functions that include documented func-
forming an assessment to identify tasks traditionally specified that all safety sys- tional requirements, equipment bill of
and hazards, estimating the associated tems be built to a SIL 3/PLe safety level. materials (BOMs), wiring and configura-
risks while outlining mitigations. If they discover through risk assessment tion details, programming examples, and
2. Functional requirements. Defin- that a new machine only requires a SIL PL verification analysis.
ing the safety functional requirements 2/PLd safety level, the cost of the safety
that help mitigate the hazards identified system might be reduced by 25% to 40% MAXIMIZE SAFETY SYSTEM
in the assessment. with a reduction in control panel size PERFORMANCE
3. Design and verification. Select- of up to 40%. Proper design targets can The latest smart, scalable, and high-
ing the appropriate safety devices and help right-size engineering and contain performing safety technologies can help
architecture, along with monitoring and system costs. machine designers right-size safety sys-
verifying that the system has achieved the Machine designers and users can tems to the required safety level. But the
required PL defined in the risk assessment. leverage a variety of industry tools to technologies can also help machine users
4. Installation and validation. demonstrate system design compliance. get more value from their safety systems
Installing the system and validating that Automated design tools provide a sim- and the machines under control.
mitigation solutions perform as intend- ple, consistent way to design machine For example, consider a presence-
ed under normal and fault conditions. safety systems within the safety life cycle. sensing safety function like a tripped

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light curtain that de-energizes a machine. window is 4 feet wide, that adds up to still believe that safety improvements
In a conservative calculation, the latest 600 sq. ft. of space savings. This is floor degrade production. But safety-system
high-performing safety controller on space that can be put to productive use. designs, standards, and technologies are
the market could reduce the safety func- Faster and smarter safety technolo- all evolving in a way that allows com-
tion’s response time by up to 200 milli- gies are also helping redefine what mod- panies to use safety to complement and
seconds compared to other controllers ern production can look like, and how even improve production.
in use today. Now, a light curtain can be people and machinery can interact more Machine builders and users are
mounted 12 in. closer to a machine while productively. increasingly embracing these changes
still achieving the required stopping time. New collaborative applications, for in thinking and method. Doing so may
This can take a full step out of an opera- example, use safety systems that allow require a fundamental shift in how safe-
tor’s task when they move in and out of a robots and humans to work nearer to each ty is viewed—from seeing it as a bur-
machine. That might seem like a minor other. The robots are ideal for taking on densome requirement to something that
change, but one small step for an operator heavy-lifting and repetitive tasks and can can help them meet their business and
can be a giant leap for improving produc- slow down, change course, or come to a production goals. But the rewards are
tivity. Specifically, taking a step out of a stop based on the distance to a human. worth it: making jobs easier and faster,
task can reduce an operator’s cycle time by Smart safety technologies that provide improving efficiencies, and ultimately
0.5 sec. and improve operator utilization access to safety-system usage data can also creating more competitive and profit-
by up to 5%. This helps make labor more help manufacturers better understand able operations.
efficient and lessens the ergonomic load. risks, enhance safety, improve production
A shorter safe stopping distance can efficiencies, reduce safety-related down- GEORGE SCHUSTER is a TÜV Func-
also reduce a machine’s footprint. If a time, and improve compliance. tional Safety Expert and business devel-
light curtain safety function saves 12 in. opment manager at Rockwell Automation.
of floor space and is used at 150 load SAFETY’S SEA CHANGE BRAD PROSAK is a safety commercial
points in a plant, and each operator load Many people in the industrial world engineer at Rockwell Automation.

JEFF KERNS | Technical Editor

How to
at a Distance
With companies producing far-field wireless charging, we stop to look at the physics,
validity, and other options for mobile or remote power.

ost people associ- that the company is named after Nikola to a future where everyone could focus
ate the name Tesla Tesla. However, the groundbreaking more of their time on what brought them
with the company serial innovator wasn’t necessarily think- joy rather than needing to work. One
that helped popu- ing of cars when he invented his AC way he thought this could be accom-
larize electric cars. You may also know motor. He wanted to propel humanity plished was through free wireless power.

If every time an electric vehicle was parked it could wireless charge, daily driving wouldn’t require the inconvenience of plugging in or stop-
ping at a charging station. (Credit: By NJo [CC BY-SA 3.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)], from Wikimedia Commons)


To d ay we have w ireless p ower (IIoT), wearables mobility is continu- batteries range from $68 to $406. Nickel-
through induction. Often used to charge ing to grow. But as mobile power needs based and lead-acid batteries get closer
phones and small electronics, induc- increase, battery technology is not at about $20 to $8 per kWh. Even with
tion technology requires contact with a keeping up. the extra charging power of a lithium
charging surface or is limited to about Consider the cost of disposable batteries, the premium cost can still get
an inch-and-a-half. With the growth batteries. The current kWh taken from about $1 to $4 per kWh, according to
of electric cars, some companies have the grid is about $.12, while alkaline BatteryUniversity.com.
designed charging stations that could
charge cars over a short distance. these
would enable a car to simply park over
a space and instantly charge. Charging
lanes could also become a reality: A car
could enter a specially designed lane
that would charge it while in motion.
About two years ago, Oak Ridge
National Laboratory researchers testing
wireless options were able to transmit
20 kW to a passenger vehicle at about
90 to 95% efficiency. This wireless effi-
ciency is competitive with plug-in or
wire chargers at about 94%. For exam-
ple, the Advanced Power Electronics
Lab (APEL) at Kettering University col-
laborated with HELLA, an automotive
electronics company, to develop a com-
pact vehicle charger with an efficiency
of 97%, more than 3% more than the
average for these plug-in chargers. In
addition, wireless charging eliminates
the cost of wires and problems with con-
Induction charging has regulations
such as the FCC Part 15, a different set
of rules called Part 18, and standards
developed by the Wireless Power Con-
sortium called Qi (pronounced like
CHEE). While these regulations and
standards may talk about charging rates
or improved thermal test for transmit-
ters, physics still governs the distance
an object can charge. With induction,
the farther an object is from the power
source, the slower it charges.

Far field wireless power had been a
dream of Nikola Tesla, and research-
ers are still working on improving
this technology today. Mobility has
been an ever-growing trend. Today,
with the Industrial Internet of Things

Far-Field Wireless Charging

It isn’t just the cost of batteries that

can cause problems, but also the weight
associated with them. Mobile applica-
tions often are concerned with weight,
so having an option to power mobile
objects without a batter y can free
designers and users from the batteries’
cost and weight.
IIoT is driving for more sensors
and computing on the Edge, which
has increased the demand for remote
power. Even if the battery can last a
long time, eventually it will need to
be replaced. Often, remote or Edge
devices are not quick or easy to access,
which leads to long replacement times.
As devices in a system grow, replacing
batteries could start to consume more
and more labor.

THE PROBLEM WITH DISTANCE This law can be used to calculate the intensity of radio waves and explain why it would be
AND PHYSICS difficult to power a large laptop or TV from across a room. (Image Credit: NDR)
In attempting to increase power at a
distance, electromagnetic waves seem to
travel better than electromagnetic fields.
Unfortunately, radio waves have dis-
tance limitation too. Newton’s inverse-
square law (intensity is inversely pro-
portional to the square of the distance
from a source) in short states that the
farther you get from the power source,
the weaker the charge:


Where D1 and D2 are the distance 1

and 2 form the source, respectively. I1 is
the intensity 1 at D1, and I2 is the inten-
sity 2 at D2.

Part 15 from the FCC limits the

amount of power output from an RF
transmitter to one watt. With this pow-
er limitation, and the decrease in pow- While skeptical of far-field claims of up to 80 ft, wireless transmitters have some work to
er over distance, it is no surprise that do, but might be the start of a new way to charge wireless devices. It might not work well
many companies are using the FCC’s for anything bigger than a Fitbit or small electronic device being charged any farther than a
Part 18 to circumnavigate this power couple feet for some time, but it’s a start.
While there is a lot to these regula- meets other stipulations, such as expo- There are companies working on
tions it seems 15 has lower power as it sure to people, Part 18 let’s higher powers this, but some of them even claim that
relates to communication. However, if be transferred. Unfortunately, this regu- if a device was transmitting 10 W, a
the device is strictly for charging and lation doesn’t circumnavigate physics. device charging at 6 ft will only give you


IoT is driving for more sensors and computing on the Edge, which has
increased the demand for remote power. Even if the battery can last
a long time, eventually it will need to be replaced. Often, remote or Edge
devices are not quick or easy to access, which leads to long replacement
times. As devices in a system grow, replacing batteries could start to
consume more and more labor.

1 W. Following this inverse square law data via Wi-Fi and be powered wireless- with a lightweight sensor powered and
with these numbers by about 13 ft you ly eliminates dozens of tiny batteries or communicating wirelessly, would save
wouldn’t transmit enough to charge a wires from a system. time.
smartphone (if turned on). However, at While current technology might not Some companies are already shipping
about .2 W, it would slow the batteries’ sound great for an industrial manu- wireless transmitters. PowerSpot sells
depletion. facturing setting, consider stress strain the TX91503 RF wireless transmitter, a 6
gages. Some aerospace and automo- ft power cord, a USB wall outlet adapter,
A NEW DIGITAL FACTORY tive applications might place dozens of and a quick start guide for $100. The
While .2 W doesn’t sound like much, stress strain gages on a chassis or wing. company claims it is the industry’s first
it could be enough to power sensors. Wiring each takes many hours. Being to work in far field applications (up to 80
Small wireless sensors don’t require able to place a stress strain gage in posi- ft), but it’s only transmitting 3 W. If this
the energy of a smartphone or vehicle. tion without the added weight of a bat- device follows the example previously
Being able to place sensor that can send tery that might interfere with testing, mentioned and the inverse-squared for-

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Far-Field Wireless Charging

mula, there would be virtually no usable Also, it uses Bluetooth to recognize there are techniques that could extend
power past 6 ft. However, this would be the device or devices. One might argue the range of Bluetooth to accomplish
great if you have a lot of wireless devices that Bluetooth only goes to 33 ft, but that the 80 ft far field claim. The question is
around your desk: game controllers, is for Class 2 Bluetooth. There are other how much power this device can deliver
headphones, keyboards, mice, etc. classes that operate in longer ranges, and at 80 ft.

Wireless power is nothing new; crys-
tal radios were the first widely used
energy harvesters. They were also the
most common radios used during the
wireless telegraphy era, circa 1904. Inex-
pensive and reliable, they were a driving
force in introducing radio to the public
and contributed to the development of
radio broadcast entertainment back in
the 1920s.
Today’s devices need more wireless
power than a crystal radio can harvest,
but it is a proof of concept. Transducers
are getting more advanced, electronics
are using less and less energy, the IoT is
driving devices closer to the Edge, elec-
tronic costs are coming down faster than
batteries, IoT infrastructure supports
device on the Edge, devices are only
A passive receiver the crystal radio receiver requires no power sources. It uses the power of as reliable as their power sources, and
incoming radio waves received by a wire antenna. IoT is causing a rethinking of system
architectures, which is fueling the idea
of power harvesting.
As electronics become more mobile,
and the IIoT drives Edge computing
power harvesting technology is work
with batteries to extend the time until
they need to be replaced. There is a lot
of research happening with microther-
mal and vibration harvesting devices,
but currently piezoelectric and photo-
voltaic technology seem to be on the
leading edge.
For factory and mobile applications
new photovoltaic films are popular.
Mono and polycrystalline panels might
deliver more power, but they operate on
a narrower bandwidth. Without direct
light from the sun mono and polycrys-
talline panels can be inefficient. If you
need power inside the wider bandwidth
of film may work better.
Also, film is less susceptible to shad-
The military will often carry thin film for its weight-to-output ratio. However, in the case of ing. Mono and polycrystalline panels
explosions, shrapnel, or being shot, this panel can continue to generate power. are wired in series. If a section of the


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Far-Field Wireless Charging

atteries aren’t perfect, but for now, they are an easy solution
for mobile or remote power. If solar can increase its return on
investment, or wireless can more effectively charge at greater distances,
the battery industry might see a change.

panel is shaded the entire row or panel For manufacturing IIoT and Edge mitigate the flow of electricity.
section might stop charging. There computing power, focusing on vibration Batteries aren’t perfect, but for now,
are workarounds, but films are robust, and indoor lights is convenient. Normally they are an easy solution for mobile or
have a wider bandwidth they can gen- if you are up and running, there are lights remote power. If solar can increase its
erate electricity with, and are light- on or vibration coming from somewhere. return on investment, or wireless can
er for mobile applications. “A 30-W This could eliminate the need for a bat- more effectively charge at greater dis-
silicon panel [c-Si] weighs 7 lb and a tery. While photovoltaics don’t need to tances, the battery industry might see
30-W foldable [CIGS] from P3 solar be replaced and could arguably produce a change. However, with the speed of
weighs 0.75 lb,” explains Amy Beaudet, power indefinitely (while everything has technology, the convenience of design-
an application engineer for altE solar a lifespan, some of the original crystalline ing with batteries, and the size and
company. “That’s a big difference if panels are still working), the initial capital growth in the mobile/remote power
you are hiking with it.” This aspect has is still giving batteries the lower barrier of market, it is more likely that the appli-
led some mobile and remote applica- entry. In addition, the DC power from cation will select the solution. For now,
tions, such as outdoor enthusiasts or a battery can flow easily to an electronic Tesla’s dream of long-distance free pow-
military personnel, to use thin-film where the AC current from a photovol- er will continue to be haunted by New-
technology. taic will require additional electronics to ton’s physics.

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GABE BATSTONE | Co-founder and CEO, contextere

the Future
with AR, Wearables,
and Mobile Devices
How do you make sense of these smart technologies to fuel your strategic
transformation, produce the most value possible, and solve real business problems?

Sifting through data that may or may not be relevant can result in workers wasting over two-thirds of their time on unproductive activities.


n an era where robots and auto- Striking the right balance allows us to one of the most buzzed-about technolo-
mation are increasingly relevant, capture the most value and effectiveness gies in this current wave of automation
there are many factors to weigh while addressing day-to-day business and data exchange in manufacturing and
when integrating new technology problems. related industries, also known as Industry
into your workplace. As hardware and 4.0. I believe this is because of the differ-
software platforms continue to improve, AUTOMATING WITH AR entiating value of AR: its ability to present
the market for new technologies like Augmented reality (AR) has become information to the user in context.
mobile devices, augmented reality, and
wearables has significant potential for
growth. While many of these technolo-
gies are not ready for broad integration,
now is the time to begin evaluating how
best to apply them for very common and
very expensive business problems.
For instance, these technologies are
often best suited to automate repetitive,
low-level tasks and to manage the col- ISO 9001 and ISO 13485
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Augmenting the Future

leverage contextual awareness and big

data to provide workers with additional
information to help them do their jobs
more effectively. Using AR, you can take
someone of a certain skill level and aug-
ment their level of expertise and quality
of their work to levels which were previ-
ously only accessible through time and
For example, AR is suitable for pro-
moting “heads-up” work, where work-
ers receive instructions overlaid onto a
real scene, allowing them to follow the
instructions without looking away from
what they’re working on. Similarly, AR
via head-worn wearable devices enables
workers to have both their hands avail-
In the workplace, AR can leverage contextual awareness and big data to provide workers able to perform the work and receive
with additional information to help them do their jobs more effectively. dynamic, in-the-moment guidance on
what they’re doing. Since AR inher-
AR is an interactive experience of a tion. This augmentation of the natu- ently “sees” the worker’s environment,
real-world environment where objects ral world through AR can come in the it has the potential to capture and dis-
residing in the real world are enhanced form of interactive sounds, graphics, tribute “tribal knowledge”—informa-
by computer-generated visual informa- and feedback. In the workplace, AR can tion known by certain members of an

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organization which is shared with the
broader organization.
In addition, when artificial intelli-
gence is applied to this dataset, insights
that were not previously available can be
accessed and redistributed to workers
through AR, wearable, or mobile devices.
As AR and smart technology are
increasingly integrated into workplaces,
more jobs will be augmented by these
devices. This will automate certain tasks
within jobs, empowering many work-
ers to move up the skill-chain—making
them more productive for the company
and more marketable for themselves.
I need a plastic molder with custom
So, while AR and automation seem to capabilities and a large selection of
compete on the surface in the near-term,
the future is one in which automated
catalog parts.
machines and augmented human work-
ers coexist seamlessly. And they need to be fast
and cost-effective.
It is worth noting that AR is also a
wearable. However, as the market has For 70 years, Caplugs has been the leading technical expert in
evolved, AR and other wearables have
product protection, masking and molded
gone down different paths. When you
hear the word “wearable” you likely pic- components. If one of our 15,000
ture a fitness tracker or another popular catalog parts doesn’t fit your
consumer product like a smart watch, requirements, our team of design
whereas AR often refers to “AR glasses”. engineers will create a custom-designed
The key differentiating value of wear-
solution for you.
ables is their ability to collect real-time
data that is based on the individual,
You’ll enjoy peace of mind knowing that Caplugs can
their ease of use, and their capability to
provide information that is quickly con- produce the parts you need — on time and on budget.
sumable. With the increasing popularity
of what we know as wearables, why not
use similar devices in our work environ- Our molding capabilities:
ments? • Injection Molding • Rubber Molding
For example, wearable devices enable • Vinyl Dip Molding • Vinyl Coating
workers to receive location- and task-
• Extrusion Molding • Die-Cutting
based instructions that are contextually
relevant, such as safety alerts. They can
also provide an easy means of dissemi-
nating tribal knowledge and guidance
28 S

via a simple interface where the worker

21 MT

can receive actionable intelligence in

#1 t I

the form of notifications. Wearables can

h a
ot us

also leverage data collected in the field www.caplugs.com

Bo isit

and combine that with edge computing


to produce nearly instant insights and

guidance for workers. sales@caplugs.com

Augmenting the Future

that we’ve covered some applications

for AR, wearables, and mobile devices
to help automate the future, which do
you see yourself applying at your com-

Schueffel, Patrick (2017). The Concise Fintech Com-
pendium. Fribourg: School of Management Fribourg/
How Augmented Reality Works (https://computer.
What Can Augmented Reality Do for Manufacturing?

GABE BATSTONE has two decades of

The future is one in which automated machines and augmented human workers coexist experience implementing emerging tech-
seamlessly. nology across multiple industries on six
continents. This has included innovations
This immediate feedback loop is par- age and further analysis. for digital oilfield, intelligent vehicles, smart
ticularly critical in situations where data In summary, when evaluating these city, future soldier, and augmented real-
expires quickly and internet access may technologies, I would suggest that you ity for the enterprise. Gabe has worked for
be limited. Once the job is completed see AR as a tool to improve produc- market leaders in the aerospace, defense,
and internet access is restored, this data tivity and wearables as a tool for com- automotive, and energy markets including
can be transmitted to the cloud for stor- munication and data collection. Now NAVTEQ, CAE, and NGRAIN.


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GREG BROWN | Senior Director CAD Global Market/Business Development, PTC

In Praise of
and Why You Should
Be Using It
Every organization, and the design engineers in those organizations, can get value
from simulation tools.

ooking back a couple of
decades, it was really only the
big aerospace and automo-
tive companies that got the
most value out of simulation, or even
attempted it. That’s no longer true. Now,
every organization—and the design
engineers in those organizations—can
get value and should be using it. You’re
missing out if you don’t, and even more
so when your competitors do!
Simulation has been democratized.
It’s no longer entirely the preserve of
degreed specialists with mysterious and
intimidating skills. It’s evolved to serve a
broader audience. Here’s the good news:
The marketplace recognized the need
for simulation tools that can be used
during the design phase and moved to
fill that gap. Simulation exists not as a
separate branch, as a sort of perpendicu-
lar activity, but as one that you do while
you’re building geometry and develop-
ing your design.
Think of it this way: if you’re balanc-
ing a household checkbook or doing the Simulation software study (contact analysis) carried out in Creo Simulate during the 3D CAD
finances for a company, you don’t write design process.


all the numbers down then at the end go calculations as you go so that you can get Yet it’s no secret that adoption isn’t
and see if they add up. You perform the to the end with more confidence. universal. In my career, I’ve come across
a few recurring reasons for this. Some
design engineers don’t have a clear idea of
the benefits. Prototypes have the final say,
after all. Others don’t think the tools will
suit them. They believe they’ll still have
to go back and forth with the analysts (or
worse still, have to go back to school).
Lastly, a major concern that crops
up is one that many of us who work in
demanding professions don’t like to
admit: Oh no, a new tool to learn! That’s
the last thing I need when I’m trying
to get my own job done against budget
cuts, deadlines, and considerable design
The reality, though, is that you can’t
afford not to. Simulation tools allow
Section view of pressure flow through cooling duct highlighting regions of low and high you to find and fix design flaws as they
pressure. appear, when you can resolve them by


Learn more by calling an Applications
Engineer today at 1-800-633-7609 or Temposonics®
email sensorsinfo@mts.com. www.mtssensors.com/RSERIESV

Simulation Tools

making small changes within the digital kitchen in the first place. I need to route this pipe to the new
world. That’s more appealing than large If y o u’v e e v e r a s k e d a “ w h at - intercooler on my car. What if I use pie-
prototyping bills, periods of waiting, if ” question, then you have already cuts on the piping? Or should I use man-
frustration, and potentially a trip back to opened the door to simulation’s ben- drel bends? What will the pressure loss
the proverbial drawing board. efits. I need to get this large couch up difference be?
It’s been said “If you can’t take the to the second floor via the staircase. These are just two of many real-world
heat, get out of the kitchen.” With simu- What if I rotate it on its axis while examples from my own out-of-office-
lation tools, you avoid that metaphorical moving up? Will it fit? hours use of simulation tools.


Prototyping has its place. When you
TRANSFORMING use simulation, you use fewer proto-
types. That means less expense, and less
CONVEYOR AUTOMATION waiting for that 3D-printed prototype,
or one that takes longer to make. With
simulation you, the engineer, are in
control—not the prototype production
schedule or the print queue. That means
more engineering hours for you.
Using simulation, you can find out
much earlier if your product’s design or
the materials used can’t hold up under
stress. Depending on the tool, simula-
tion puts at your fingertips such standard
CAE analyses as linear static, modal,
buckling, contact, and steady-state ther-
mal. You can put analysis behind your
recommendations and can avoid either
Innovative Belt, Modular Belt & over- or under-engineering the product.
Flexible Chain Conveying Solutions Now imagine you’re further along in
the product development process. You’ve
done the basics. You’ve got a nice-look-
ing piece of geometry and nice-looking
stresses which make intuitive sense to
you. The problem is, that’s only the start
of the true analysis. All you’ve done is
created data, and now you need to ana-
lyze it. Simulation tools make it easier to
explore further. Analysis is not finished
just because you have your stress plots!
Keep going. The beauty and power of
We get your product to the exact location, in the exact position, at simulation is that it’s inherently repeat-
the exact time it needs to be there for the next phase in the process. able. Moreover, the ever-increasing
computing power at your fingertips
The Result? can do considerable heavy lifting. You
Optimal Performance and Efficiency Reduced Waste can iterate quickly, using that time to
Maximized Production Output Less Downtime consider as many options as possible.
If you just do a single simulation, you
might be right on the edge of a safe
Booth envelope of design. You might accept a
“good-enough” result. And who among
www.dorner.com/mdm 800.397.8664
us doesn’t have blind spots about our COMPANIES ALREADY vibration analysis.
design or prefer to walk on well-lit, well- SUCCEEDING WITH SIMULATION And the company went even further
trodden conceptual paths? One company that stands out is a well- than that, embracing fatigue analysis—
Consider what happens when you known motorcycle manufacturer. For looking at individual welds that hold
tweak that design a tiny bit. One of the years it has used simulation throughout certain mounting components (say,
parameters might fall out of an accept- its development process, from evaluat- exhaust brackets) throughout the whole
able design envelope. Like all simula- ing a mechanism of an engine to mecha- engine. It’s a beautiful model, encom-
tions, there are unknowns: loads, factors nism dynamics, structural analysis, and passing the engine, gearbox, frame, and
of safety, and other items on a long list.
When you run simulations repeatedly
as you work, you’d better understand the
design envelope that you’re working in,
and how close to the edge you may be.
This leads to what we all want: better-
quality products, on every dimension
It used to skew and chatter.
of quality, and produced faster. You can
put that time right back into engineering


Don’t get stuck imagining simulation
still is as it was decades ago. If you’re
a mid-career professional, you might
remember the days that FEA expert
Tony Abbey, describes so memorably.
He brings back memories of miles of
fanfold computer printouts, sketching,
and hand stress analysis.
Tony then talks about the democrati-
zation of simulation tools:
“However, the biggest influence
behind the spread of FEA into a wider
community has been the improvement Now it runs like a Swiss watch.
of the user interface. This is most dra-
matic in the FEA products which are This press applies up to 3000 tons to form composite automobile
panels. Delta’s RMC does multi-axis control of position and
embedded in CAD programs. Instead
pressure to keep every moving part in perfect synchronization.
of fighting with arcane syntax and data
structures, the workflow is laid out in a Look to Delta RMC motion controllers and graphical RMCTools software
very familiar CAD-like environment.” to make complex motion design easier, smoother, and more precise.
Tony follows that up with a robust
technical discussion for engineer-ana- Call 1-360-254-8688 or visit deltamotion.com
lysts, but the point is that these tools are Find case studies like this about Wuxi LANLI Machine Tool Co., Jiangsu,
well within the reach of the engineer China, and many others. Watch training videos to see how Delta motion
already working in the CAD environ- can make everything work in perfect, precise harmony.
ment. In many cases, you simply click a
tab and seamlessly proceed to the simu- Delta RMC Motion Controller Family
lation environment. I should also note
that simulation products are coming
into the market aimed at designers who
want tools with instantaneous simula-
tion capabilities.
1 to 32 axes

Simulation Tools

exhaust system. And the firm went from

the very beginning to the end all in one
software package.
Another company, a car manufac-
turer, uses simulation to produce sev-
eral different race car models used by
a number of teams. Simulation reveals
how different iterations of its design will
perform in the real world.
Finally, in one of my favorite exam-
ples, there’s a company that makes pros-
thetics. The firm designs each product
to suit the unique requirements of the
person who is relying on it. From 15
models, the company creates more than
400,000 variations customized to each Analysis streamlines showing the temperature of air flowing through the cylinder head and
wearer’s needs, from elite athletes to into the cylinder.
those with different demands.
Simulation has evolved to the point figure out if the bolt is the wrong diam- GREGORY BROWN promotes the CAD
where it should be part of every designer’s eter. And from a personal perspective, I product strategy and business develop-
workflow. When you send your design am willing to bet you’ll find the design ment as the leader of a global CAD Seg-
for formal analysis, you’ll know you’re process more satisfying when you’re able ment team. He is based in the PTC Tokyo
sending a more developed product to the to design better products faster while sav- office and manages a team of highly ex-
analysis department—not asking them to ing time and money. perienced CAD subject matter experts.

Discover our motion
control difference.
Visit amk.systems/MachineDesign
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Get the total package: PLC, motion
controller and DC power supply.
Discover more at amk.systems


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New Products

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THE NEW FHA-C SERIES of servo cables or tubing through the
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Stainless Steel Latch with

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A NEW MEDIUM-DUTY stainless steel
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(Continued from page 20)



This shows X-ray diffraction on a single crystal of an antiferromag-

netic material. This material, scientists found, exhibits an extremely
large anomalous Hall effect, a sign of its topological character.
(Image by Argonne National Laboratory.)

IN RECENT YEARS, scientists have become intrigued by topologi-

cal materials, those that show unusual and split behavior. They
can have different properties at their surface than in their bulk.
This behavior has gotten the attention of engineers interested
in new states of matter and potential electronic and spintronic

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applications. At Argonne National Labora- configuration of atoms in the lattice cre-

tory, for example, researchers created a ates symmetries in the material that lead to
new class of topological materials made the creation of topological bands—energy
by inserting transition metal atoms into regions that electrons inhabit. It is these
the atomic lattice of niobium diselenide bands, in certain configurations, that lead
(NbS 2), a well-known two-dimensional to exceptionally large AHEs.”
material. They found that CoNb 3S 6, an Based on calculations and measure-
antiferromagnetic material, exhibits an ex- ments, Ghimire and his colleagues sug-
tremely large anomalous Hall effect, a sign gest that CoNb3S6 contains these topo-
of topological materials. logical bands.
The ordinary Hall effect is present in The topological features arise from a
all electrical conductors. The effect is es- combination of the symmetry of the ma-
sentially a force on an electron as it moves terial and the right electron concentra-
through a magnetic field. “In every metal, tion that puts these topological features
electrons get pushed perpendicular to at the Fermi level, which is the highest
their direction of travel and perpendicu- available electronic energy state at zero
lar to an applied external magnetic field, temperature. Only a handful of materials
creating a voltage,” says Nirmal Ghimire, have been shown to have the necessary
a professor at George Mason University characteristic topological points near the
and a recent Argonne researcher. “If the Fermi level. To find more requires an un-
material is a ferromagnet, an additional derstanding both of the materials physics
contribution gets superimposed on the and chemistry at play.
ordinary Hall voltage; this is known as the This discovery could pave the way for
anomalous Hall effect (AHE).” future advances in a broad class of mate-
In the study, Ghimire and his colleagues rials because it gives researchers a design
looked at CoNb3S6 and found something rule for making materials that demonstrate
unexpected: a large AHE in modest mag- these topological properties. CoNb3S6
netic fields. “An AHE can also be found in is a member of a large class of layered
materials where the electronic structure two-dimensional materials, so this might
has special characteristics known as to- open the door to many new examples of
pological features,” Ghimire explains. “The topological matter. 

TINY SOFT ROBOTS for Effcient Drug Delivery

task in the medical industry. Pills and The inspiration for the robot’s design
intravenous treatments have been the came from studying animals that had two,
main method of drug delivery for decades. four, eight, or more legs. In particular, the
Researchers have investigated other engineers at CityU studied the ratio be-
methods, like mobile pump devices that tween leg-length and the gap between
provide treatment to the patient over long legs. Dr. Shen Yajing, an assistant profes-
periods of time, slowly, and outside of the sor at CityU’s Department of Biomedical
hospital environment. Engineering (BME) who led the research,
Another new development could po- explains that “most animals have a leg-
tentially help solve this problem: the cre- length to the leg-gap ratio of 2:1 to 1:1. So
ation of a soft robot from the City University we decided to create our robot using 1:1
of Hong Kong (CityU). This mini-delivery proportion.”
robot has soft caterpillar legs that can carry The robot measures 0.15 mm thick
heavy loads and is adaptable to adverse and each conical leg measures 0.65 mm
environments. It would be able to traverse long. The gap between the legs is 0.6 mm.
inside the human body on its own to help This makes the leg-length-to-gap ratio
deliver time-scheduled medication. around 1:1. The robot’s legs are specifi-


would make it a perfect drug delivery The team from CityU are looking for-
system. The soft robot would be able to ward to experimenting with the robot on
traverse a terrain like the digestive sys- animals and humans to help further de-
tem, an environment that is harsh and velop and refine the robot’s movements
difficult to navigate, and deliver a drug and technique. “We are hoping to create a
The small soft robot developed by the City to a designated spot in the human body. biodegradable robot in the next two to three
University of Hong Kong can traverse the The robot could also be used for medical years, so it will decompose naturally after its
rough geography of the human digestive inspection. meds delivery mission,” says Yajing. 
system to deliver time released and loca-
tion-specific medication.

cally pointed to reduce the contact area

and friction with the surface it interacts
with. The laboratory test out of CityU con-
better products.
cluded that the soft multi-legged robot had
40 times less friction than other limbless
robots in either wet or dry environments.
better solutions.
The robot is fabricated from a sili-
con material called polydimethylsiloxane Regardless of what makes your material
(PDMS). The material is embedded with handling application unique mk can provide
magnetic particles so that it can be re- a standard or custom solution Ñ that meets
motely controlled via an electromagnetic your needs and keeps your business moving.
force. “Both the materials and the multi-leg
 Aluminum framed conveyors
design greatly improve the robot’s hydro-
 Featuring plastic modular belt,
phobic property,” says Wang Zuankai, a
roller, chain and belt conveyors
professor at CityU’s Department of Me-
 Pallet-handling conveyor systems
chanical Engineering (MNE) who con-
 Stainless steel conveyors
ceived this research idea and initiated the
 Extruded aluminum t-slot framing
collaboration among the researchers. “Be-
sides, the rubber piece is soft and can be
cut easily to form robots of various shapes
and sizes for different applications.”


When it came time to manipulate the
body, the team used a magnetic manipu-
lator in the experiments, which cause the
robot to move in a flapping and inverted
pendulum pattern. The robot would
use its front feet to flap forward as well
as swing its body by standing on the left
and right feel alternate to advance for-
ward. The robot is extremely flexible, able
to angle its body to 90 degrees when it
encounters an obstacle ten times higher
than its own leg length. The laboratory
tests also showed that the robot could
carry a load 100 times its own weight. This
is strength comparable to an ant. (https://
The robot’s freedom of movement
and strength are the attributes that

THAT DEMANDS 3D PRINTING at the Nanoscale Level



Ondrej Dyck, a researcher at Oak Ridge National Laboratory, used a scanning transmis-
sion electron microscope to move single atoms in a two-dimensional layer of graphene, an
approach that could build nanoscale devices from the atomic level up for quantum-based
applications. (Credit: Carlos Jones/Oak Ridge National Laboratory)

A NOVEL TECHNIQUE that nudges single atoms to switch places within an atomically
thin material could bring scientists another step closer to realizing theoretical physicist
Richard Feynman’s vision of nanotechnology, and building tiny machines from the atom
up. This approach could be used to “build” materials that harness the quantum nature of
atoms and the demand for such materials is driving the need to build atomically precise
electronics and sensors. Fabricating nanoscale devices atom by atom requires delicacy
and precision, which has been demonstrated by a microscopy team at the DoE’s Oak
Ridge National Laboratory.
The researchers used a scanning transmission electron microscope, or STEM, at the
Polyurethane Timing Belts
lab’s Center for Nanophase Materials Sciences to inject silicon atoms into a single-atom-
English and Metric Pitch
thick sheet of graphene. STEM has recently emerged as a tool for manipulating atoms
Backings, profiles and machining available
in materials while preserving the sample’s stability. As the electron beam scans across
for diverse applications
the material, its energy slightly disrupts the graphene’s molecular structure and creates
room for a nearby silicon atom to swap places with a carbon atom.
Pulleys “We tracked an electron beam-assisted chemical reaction induced at a single-atom
Stock pulleys ship immediately and chemical-bond level, and each step was captured by the microscope, which is
Custom pulleys made to your specifications rare,” says ORNL researcher Ondrej Dyck.
Using this process, the scientists brought two, three, and four silicon atoms together
to build clusters and make them rotate within the graphene layer. Graphene is a two-
Drive Components & Accessories
dimensional, or 2D, layer of carbon atoms with unprecedented strength and high elec-
Clamps, tensioning clamps and tensioners
trical conductivity. Dyck selected graphene for this work because it is robust and can
Tension Meter, Field Welder and
Connecting Kits withstand a 60-kV electron beam.
“We can look at graphene with the electron beam for long periods of time without
damaging the sample, compared with other 2D materials such as transition metal di-
chalcogenide monolayers, which tend to fall apart more easily under the electron beam,”
he adds.
Dyck and his ORNL colleagues are among the few scientists learning to control the
movement of single atoms in 2D materials using the STEM. Their work supports an
ORNL-led initiative coined The Atomic Forge, which encourages the microscopy com-
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munity to reimagine STEM as a method to build materials from scratch.
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With a STEM microscope, ORNL’s Ondrej Dyck brought two, three,
and four silicon atoms together to build clusters and make them
rotate within a layer of graphene, a two-dimensional layer of carbon
atoms that exhibits unprecedented strength and high electrical con-
ductivity. (Credit: Carlos Jones/Oak Ridge National Laboratory)

The fields of nanoscience and nanotechnology have experi-

enced explosive growth in recent years. One of the earlier steps
toward Feynman’s idea of building tiny machines atom by atom,
a follow-on from his original theory of atomic manipulation first LOCKED INTO
presented in his famous 1959 lecture, was seeded by the work of
IBM fellow Donald Eigler. Eigler was the first to manipulate atoms
using a scanning tunneling microscope; until the use of STEM at
ORNL, his method was the only way to move atoms one by one.
Successfully moving atoms in the STEM could be a crucial
step toward fabricating quantum devices one atom at a time. The
scientists will next try introducing other atoms such as phospho-
rus into the graphene structure.
“Phosphorus has potential because it contains one extra
electron compared to carbon,” Dyck says. “This would be ideal WE HAVE AN ANSWER FOR THAT.
for building a quantum bit, or qubit—the basis for quantum- CONTI® SYNCHROCHAIN CARBON never needs
based devices.” oiling or retensioning and greatly increases
Dyck cautions that although building a qubit from phospho- performance for applications with extremely
rus-doped graphene is on the horizon, how it would behave at high torque. Let’s talk soon if you need
ambient temperatures, and outside of the STEM or a cryogenic a better drive combination.
environment, is still a mystery. “We have found that exposing the
silicon-doped graphene to the outside world does affects their
structures,” he says.
The team will continue to experiment with ways to keep the WeHaveAnAnswerForThat.com
material stable in non-laboratory environments, which is im-
portant to the future success of STEM-built atomically precise
structures. 

Special Content

Best of 2018
The best of 2018 OEM
content gathers educational
materials from some of the
leading manufacturers in the
engineering industry.

his month’s issue contains a
special section dedicated to
the best of 2018’s OEM con-
tent. Our original equipment
manufacturers in partnership with the
editorial team here at Machine Design,
work to curate sponsored technical and
educational guides to help engineers.
These FAQs, Basics of Designs, Top Tips,
and white papers are designed to educate
our audience and provide insight into
how a process of the engineering industry
This s ec tion features s ome of our
best OEM content, including pieces on
selecting the right connectors for sens-
ing equipment, the difference between
encoders, how to choose between desktop
and cloud-based computer aided design
systems, and understanding when to use
emergency stops in safety equipment.
Please enjoy this section and be sure
to visit our repository online. Our learn-
ing resources feature more OEM pieces
not included in this section and are
great educational assets. The site link is:



THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN: the light emitted onto the photo

detector—and therefore, generate a
Absolute and digital or pulsed signal output. A pulse
for each incremental step in rotation is

Incremental Encoders produced from the interaction.

Incremental encoders with a single
code track generate a signal whose
in Application frequency indicates the velocity of
displacement—but does not indicate
Used for control and feedback in a wide range of applications— direction. To determine direction, a
from industrial automation to medical and from packaging to two-channel encoder that uses two
in-store pharmaceutical delivery—encoders have become critical detectors and two code tracks must
components to many engineers. Because of this, there are multiple be incorporated. Such encoders
ways to discuss the differences between encoders. The greatest position the two tracks at a 90-deg.
divide in encoder technology, which we’ll cover in this article, stems difference, which allows them to
from the output type they provide and their sensing method. indicate direction. This is done by the
device recognizing which code track
AN INCREMENTAL ENCODER disk is mounted on the rotating shaft is being read first. Because they only
CONVERTS linear or rotary of a motor or other spinning device. It determine relative position, they are
displacement into digital or pulsed is fashioned with a series of patterns simple and inexpensive. But they are
signals. For optical encoders you need of opaque and transparent sectors also highly limited, require sensors,
a rotating disk, a light source, and a coded into the disk so that, as the and only provide change information.
photo detector (or light sensor). The disk rotates, these patterns interrupt Magnetic incremental encoders

Absolute encoder Incremental encoder

Optical Optical
Primary gear

Code wheel Index mark

1 Lines
2 Magnetic
3 Magnet Sensor Magnetic
5 4 wheel
LED array
Sensor +
NSN Controller conditioning circuit NSN


Encoder wheel representations illustrate the differences between

Backup voltage
incremental and absolute encoders.

Sponsored by

operate in a similar manner, only Performance Considerations cost than optical absolute encoders.
using magnets instead of opaque and The end user of an encoder is Finally, magnetic absolute encoders
transparent lines. The magnets are less concerned with the technology are able to support special closed-
placed around the edge of the rotating and more concerned with overall loop functionality.
wheel and are detected as north capabilities necessary for their
and south poles. This offers several particular application. Critical Understanding Open-and
advantages, including smaller size, performance for an encoder in almost Closed-Loop Operation
increased accuracy, more robustness any industry would be the retention Control operations are designed as
in harsh environments, and automatic of position information even when either closed-loop or open-loop. The
detection of direction. Regardless the system is without power, whether key difference is that an open-loop
of the type of sensing, incremental scheduled or unscheduled. This control system (also known as a non-
encoders do not output absolute eliminates the need for a lengthy feedback system) acts completely
position. homing operation that must be on the basis of input; the output has
performed prior to the equipment no effect on the control action. A
Absolute Encoders being brought back online and into closed-loop control system, on the
Absolute rotary encoders provide operation. other hand, looks at the current output
unique position information the Because absolute encoders data so that the controller can alter
moment they are switched on. This provide unique position values the the system to the desired condition.
is done by scanning the position of moment the machine is switched Known as a feedback system, the
a coded element where all positions on, there is no need for external control action in these systems is
correspond to a specific code. Even sensors, which saves money on based on the output. 
movements that occur while a system additional components, wiring, and Open-loop systems using an
is powered down are translated into maintenance. Also take note that incremental encoder measure what
an accurate position value once the magnetic absolute encoders are direction and how far a motor traveled.
system is powered up again. These often smaller in size and are lower in Power interruptions, whether planned
encoders can be single-turn or multi-
turn devices. Single-turn encoders
measure motion displacement in Open-loop
one turn from a starting position system using
across 360 deg., whereas multi-turn an incremental
encoders measure the same way encoder, which
but with additional tracking of the requires it to
total number of revolutions. This is have a homing
performed through unique coding LIMIT -
assigned at each shaft position. HOME
As with incremental encoders,
optical absolute encoders use an
optical code wheel and gearing to
record position. The absolute position
is determined through the use of
binary values coded on the wheel Closed-loop
and read by passing light through the system using an
openings. Magnetic absolute encoders absolute encoder
are similar to magnetic incremental for sensorless
encoders, but are also connected to homing.
circuitry for position encode, multi-turn
counting, position storage, and backup
voltage monitoring. The strength of
absolute encoders overall is in how
their positioning accuracy affects

Sponsored by
or unplanned, automatically require and the design and labor overhead
the system to complete a homing needed to install, harness, and
routine used to calibrate the system maintain three sensors. With photo or
at startup. This is necessary because proximity sensors the savings can be
the controller can’t operate properly substantial, especially when measured
until it knows exactly where the load is across multiple axes. With mechanical
positioned. switches, the cost is less, but
For example, as soon as a mechanical contacts degrade and can
machine’s control begins its startup system ready fail over time. Cost savings primarily
homing routine
routine the motion axes begin their initialization derive from the material and labor
homing processes by slowly moving incremental absolute costs associated with developing
between limit sensors before settling encoder encoder and deploying elaborate harnesses,
on the home sensor. This operation associated conduit, and mounting
only moves as quickly as the slowest Closed-loop systems with absolute hardware to support the sensors.
axis in the system. In time-sensitive encoders can save significant time and Additional cost savings can come in
operations, such as high-production money for the user. the form of reduced downtime due to
work cells, this unplanned homing maintenance.
execution could lead to decreased predictability—also, when an output Intelligent motion solutions,
throughput. Another example might varies from a desired outcome and is supported by the ongoing trend of
be a medical lab where a sample not “set and forget.” integrating more components into
analyzer is using costly, short-lived Before a closed-loop control system single units, has led to the creation
reagents. Waiting for a homing can be designed or tuned, all parts of the Lexium MDrive products
operation could increase the chances must be in good working order, so designed and manufactured by
of losing samples. sticking valves, gear backlash, and Schneider Electric Motion. The
Note that open-loop control might erratic sensors must be fixed. Some of product integrates multiple motion
be the better choice when low cost the advantages of using closed-loop components into a single unit.
is a high priority; an output changes control are significant. For example, The addition of absolute encoders
rarely or not at all, such as in some a process can be kept on set point provides more robust intelligent
cooling pumps; a process is erratic, within a given accuracy, corrections to feedback, eliminates the number
such as having a sticking valve or process disturbances are automated, of sensors needed, and reduces
erratic sensor; or when process and unstable processes can be machine startup time.
disturbances are extremely rare. stabilized.
The medical lab application
mentioned above that operated in a Saving Time and Money
closed-loop system with an absolute If the slowest axis of an open-loop REQUEST FOR MORE
encoder would reduce the risk of bottle capping machine takes 45 sec. INFORMATION
failure. When power is re-applied, any to home at startup each weekday, lost https://motion.schneider-electric.com/
operation would start right where it productivity per machine adds up to SCHNEIDER ELECTRIC MOTION
stopped, as that precise location is almost 4 hr/year—or, at 5 sec. each, USA is a manufacturer of motion
known. If returning to home is desired, some 2,700 additional bottles that control components for automation
this can be achieved more rapidly could be capped, multiplied by the equipment. An innovator in motion
without searching for sensors. number of operational machines. With control solutions for stepper mo-
Here are some key signs that your this in mind, hours of production time tors and electronic controls, and
control system should be running can be saved by operating a bottle the world leader in integrated mo-
tor drives with the MDrive® product
in closed-loop rather than open- capping machine as a closed-loop
line. As an R&D driven company, our
loop, and fully automated rather system that does not require homing
experienced team of Connecticut-
than with human intervention. As routines at startup. Faster machine based engineers develop solutions
control requires measurement, startups can also increase system in brushless motor technology and
either direct or inferred, closed-loop productivity. electronic controls for applications
control is the operation of choice Designing an absolute encoder- demanding highly precise, controlled
when measurement is feasible based system can eliminate three movement.
and the process has a degree of sensors; the wiring required for them;

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Top Tips for Selecting and Installing
Gas Springs for Lifing and Lowering

If you’ve ever had a hood or door close on you while

working, you’ll want to read these tips on how to select and
install gas springs for lifing and lowering. Not only will you
learn what data is needed to fulfill your needs, you’ll better
understand the nuances that make for a better solution
while maintaining your budget.

Collect the data you need to size your gas
spring properly.
Locate the center of gravity (M) for your hood or door, typically the center point
between the system’s pivot point and handle. This can also be determined from
your CAD drawings for more complex doors and hoods.

• Measure the dimensions of the door or hood; alternatively, your CAD drawings
can provide you with the door or hood measurements in all three dimensions.

• Find the radius measurement to your center of gravity (RM) from the pivot
point, located in step 1.

• Next, measure the radius of your hand force, which is the distance between
your pivot point and the handle (RH).

• Find your starting angle (aM)—the angle created between the horizontal
level and RM when your hood is closed—by checking it on your CAD drawing
or measuring it directly on your application.

• You’ll also need the opening angle (a), which is the total angle of rotation
from when your hood is closed to when the hood is open.

• Finally, measure your hood weight (m), which may be found in your CAD data.
Without CAD, this is easily accomplished by using a spring scale during lifing.
Note that the distance used for measuring the weight needs to be scaled to
RM for an accurate number (multiply measurement by RH and divide by RM).
2 Decide how many gas springs you will be using.
If your hood is wide or cumbersome for any reason, it is recommended that you use two gas springs, one on
either side. This will also prevent you from adding lateral forces into your calculation, which can greatly change
the size and capacity of your final choice.

Consider special conditions posed by your environment.
Equipment that operates in high or low temperatures, around abrasive chemicals, or in a place with excessive
dust and dirt, may require special seals, oils, etc. So, at this point, check the manufacturers’ catalogs for specific
characteristics of each gas-spring series they have available. In addition, most manufacturers provide help in
making the right decision. For example, ACE Controls provides an easy-to-use online calculator that asks for
all of the above information and then helps you make the right selection for your application’s needs. For more
complicated applications, ACE engineers are ready to help you specify the right product.

Mount the gas spring correctly.
Be sure that the flap hits the end position without end damping. A small amount of oil has been placed in the
pressure tube to assure that the seal is properly lubricated and that the end position is hydraulically damped.
Now, mount the gas spring with the piston rod down. This helps to reduce the extension velocity during operation
and makes sure that the piston dives into the oil.

Adjust the pressure in your gas spring for proper usage for your application.
Adjustments are ofen needed when one of two things happen—either the designer didn’t know the correct
data during the time for specifying the gas spring, or the machine design changed afer the spring specifications
were decided upon. If your hood is being pushed back open rather than staying closed, you will have to de-gas
the spring.

To adjust the gas pressure and extension force, you’ll need to remove the gas spring from the hood. Screw the
de-gas adjustment tool onto the gas spring. Tap the tool to release excess gas, then reattach the spring to the
hood. You can also purchase fully charged gas springs and find the appropriate force by bleeding the gas springs
down if you don’t have all of the necessary information for sizing.

Focus on your application.
The keys to selecting and installing gas springs are application specifications and uniqueness. For example,
in an underground distribution system, easy access for servicing is critical. By incorporating two gas springs
to lif heavy covers (mounted with large supply systems), maintenance and repeated operation become easy.

Another application requires gas springs to aid in the prevention of injuries during maintenance work on
harvesting machines. Proper gas-spring selection is key, because they need to be stable under rough operating
conditions. Once again, proper sizing is important when used on helicopter doors, such as those operated for
rescue operations. The proper component provides a defined retraction speed and secure engagement of the
door lock. An integrated end position damper is added to allow gentle closing of the door while reducing wear.

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Desktop and
Cloud-Based CAD
25 TB PER MONTH. According to a to major differences in user access, are performed remotely, designers can
2017 trend survey by cloud security hardware compatibility, and ease of even use mobile devices like phones
firm Skyhigh, that’s the average collaboration. Cloud-based CAD and tablets to create, view, and change
amount of data a manufacturing or users access the service via an annual designs.
technology company uploads into subscription. When a subscription Not only does cloud-based CAD
cloud services every month, with most account is set up, that user ID, tied to work on any device, it can also
data being uploaded for file sharing an email address, is available to use export 3D files to most desktop CAD
and collaboration purposes. Whether within half an hour. packages. This makes it easy to share
organizing and storing photos, In contrast, desktop CAD systems files with suppliers and subcontractors
collaborating on documents, or video use a seat license system. Each seat who may be using different desktop
conferencing, cloud-based products license costs at least three times CAD platforms.
enable availability of information to the cost of a cloud-based CAD Desktop CAD users are familiar with
single or multiple users, no matter their subscription. And seat licenses may the trying routine of transferring the
location, often at the same time. not be available immediately when a huge files that comprise a model to
T h e w o r l d o f c o m p u t e r- a i d e d new designer comes on board, leading users who are not on their network,
design (CAD) is no different. Cloud- to a wait of days or even weeks. not to mention trying to find translation
based CAD products are disrupting The seat license model is linked software that can correctly export a
the traditional ways users interact with to a desktop CAD user’s need for a model from one desktop software
CAD systems and design data. dedicated workstation, a specialized version to another.
The challenge for designers has computer terminal with the power
always been how to store, access, to perform complex computations Controlling access
change, and share the massive quickly and display the model with With so many people involved in the
amounts of data required to digitally great fidelity. These workstations design process, from design engineers
represent parts, assemblies, and full require massive amounts of power for each subsystem or subassembly
product designs. Desktop-based and and storage, and as a result can to suppliers and manufacturing
cloud-based CAD systems address cost thousands of dollars and require engineers, proper version control is
these challenges in different ways. specialty IT support for installation and essential. Cloud-based CAD enables
maintenance. all users to work concurrently with
Making CAD accessible Conversely, cloud-based CAD the most current version of the
Desktop CAD and cloud-based can run on less expensive mid-level design. Concurrent access facilitates
CAD are both software platforms, workstations. Because all the data collaboration and gives users the
but their different architectures lead lives in the cloud and computations confidence that they are working with

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the latest version. Cloud-based CAD eases the path between design and
Compare that with the variety of schemes users of manufacturing in other ways as well. Since it is easy to
desktop CAD systems have to implement in order to ensure access—and in some systems like Onshape’s even
everyone is working with the most current version. Ranging edit—designs from standard desktop computers and
from the need to “sign out” subassemblies to implementing mobile devices, cloud-based CAD makes it possible for
full product data management (PDM) systems, these stakeholders like manufacturing engineers to get involved in
strategies can be cumbersome, costly, and time-consuming the design process from the get-go.
to maintain. In contrast, a standard workflow for a design in a desktop
Of course, there are times when designers don’t want CAD system may call for manufacturing engineers to
their changes to affect the most current design, such as review drawings when the design is 90% complete. This
when they are trying a new idea that may or may not pan means extra time has to be added to the process for non-
out. In those cases, users of cloud-based CAD can create a concurrent fixture design, not to mention the risk of delays
branched version of the design. Branched designs update if problems are discovered with the manufacturability of the
along with the master files, so designers are testing ideas design.
on the latest version. If the experiment is a success, the One specific example of cloud-based CAD’s support
branched design can be merged with the master. for design-for-manufacturing can be found in Onshape’s
Designers using desktop CAD systems, on the other sheet metal tool suite. Traditionally, designers use several
hand, may have to create a local version of the design to try views to design sheet metal assemblies in desktop CAD
out their ideas, then replicate the good ideas in the master systems. These flat, folded, and tabular views are not
design. Or, if design changes that don’t pan out are made to synchronized, so designers spend time updating all three
the master design, a rollback to an earlier version must be and risk introducing inconsistencies.
communicated to the entire team. Onshape’s tool links the 3D sheet metal views and tables.
One of the primary concerns in design collaboration Designers can alter the sheet metal view and the dimensions
is security and protection of intellectual property. With shown in the table automatically update. Likewise, changes
cloud-based CAD systems, design owners can designate to the table immediately translate to the part model.
permissions to those with whom they share the design.
For instance, suppliers may have viewing and commenting The future of CAD
privileges but not permission to edit a design. And if a As cloud-based computing has become mainstream,
company changes suppliers, they can revoke access from more users are finding it makes sense to move design
one set of users and grant it to another—immediately. operations to cloud-based CAD systems, too. They bring
This is in contrast to common practice among desktop the agility of real-time collaboration, built-in version control,
CAD users: sharing copies of 3D files by Dropbox, FTP, and controlled user access to part design.
email, or physical media. Once shared, such copies aren’t Cloud-based CAD systems support the modern reality
version controlled and can’t be recalled, opening a design’s of design teams with members in multiple locations using a
owner to the possibility of a serious breach of IP security. variety of workstations and desktop CAD programs. Some
systems even extend their functionality to mobile devices,
Design tools giving engineers the freedom to view and change models in
The PDM systems on which desktop CAD users rely tend the field on phones and tablets. n
not to work well with the enterprise resource management
(ERM) systems that make those part designs reality. ERM
users store 2D or PDF versions of part designs in the
database for easy reference. However, these reference REQUEST FOR MORE INFORMATION
designs—which are often manually created, require special www.onshape.com
software to create or view, and take up database space— ONSHAPE IS THE FIRST AND ONLY full-cloud 3D CAD sys-
are not automatically linked to show changes to the part. tem that lets everyone on a design team work together us-
In cloud-based CAD systems, each part and assembly ing any web browser, phone, or tablet. Onshape was built
is permanently assigned a unique URL. Pasting a part’s from scratch for the way todays engineers, designers and
URL into a text field in the ERM database gives users on manufacturers really work, giving them secure and simulta-
compatible devices immediate access to the part’s up-to- neous access to a single master version of their CAD data
date 3D design without taking up database space or without the hassles of software licenses or copying files.
designer time.

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Modern CAD
for Cutting-Edge Robotics Design
Onshape helps robotics companies like Hirebotics speed up
production, boost collaboration and increase innovation with
web-based 3D modeling and unified design data management.

“The really nice thing about

Onshape is the ability to access
and work on a CAD model in the
field. If we’re sitting in the factory
trying to figure out how a robot
goes together, we can pull up the
model on our phone and solve
the problem
p right there.
Most of our customers
are just floored when
we pull up the model
on our phone.”

- Matthew Bush,
Chief Operating OĆcer
and co-founder of Hirebotics.

Get Started with Onshape makes modern design

teams more eąective with powerful
Modern CAD Today modeling tools, built-in data
management, and secure access to
www.onshape.com/trial shared project data on any device.
Unlike old CAD systems, there are no
IT infrastructure costs, no crashes
and no ddata loss. Say goodbye to the
hassles of desktop-installed CAD.

THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN: and manufacturing, the look and

feel of terminal blocks has evolved

Screw Clamp and and expanded into their own trends,

including compact sizing, the use
of a variety of materials for different

Spring Clamp DIN environments, and the adjustment and

expansion of clamp technology from
those using screw clamps to spring

Rail Terminal Blocks clamps of various types. But whatever

your application, you want to be sure
to use the right product for the right
TERMINAL BLOCKS are a interconnection, the breadth of job, whether the situation calls for
necessary part of almost every available products indicates how DIN rail-mounted terminal blocks with
industry, supplying a way to hardwire important application is to secure front-entry wiring, side-entry wiring,
components, subsystems, and the right terminal block components. or top entry wiring, or panel-mounted
systems together. As a staple of the Most often, terminal blocks are found terminal blocks, there are products
electrical and electronics control inside control panels to interconnect that provide the perfect solution for
systems used in a wide variety the panel wiring internally as well as any challenge. Ultimately, your choice
of applications, including utilities, to field wiring. Terminal blocks have of terminal block must maintain a
automobile plants, chemical plants, a crucial role for providing good wire long life of reliable service, be as low
and all types of automation and management in any project. maintenance as possible, and be able
manufacturing that requires hardwired Because of trends in automation to be installed quickly and efficiently
under any conditions.
This article will explore the more
common options for your terminal
block requirements, looking at the two
most standard products, the screw
clamp and the spring clamp terminal

Screw-Type DIN Rail

Terminal Blocks

Screw terminals are used

extensively in the distribution of
electricity in homes, apartments,

Sponsored by
Screw Clamp Instructions connection. These terminal blocks are
used with solid or stranded wire and
create a very secure connection—
unlike screws that can loosen over
time or in high-vibration applications.
Spring-clamp terminal blocks are
often designed into vehicles because
of their natural resistance to vibration
and shock. Under the high-vibration
movement of vehicles and aircraft, the
1 Insert Wire into open clamp spring-clamp terminal block maintains
a secure hold on the wire long after
2 Tighten screw to specified torque when a screw-type terminal block
would have loosened and caused a
3 Remove Screwdriver, screw terminal closed
with locking feature for a reliable/safe connection potential failure.
Another type of spring-clamp
terminal block is designed specifically
and stores, as well as in utility plants completed, these terminal blocks for single-wire connections allows
and inside all types of controller and provide vibration-resistant, gas-tight the wire to be pushed directly into
junction boxes for automation and connections designed for the most the spring block without using a
manufacturing systems and in multiple stringent requirements. screwdriver or tool to complete the
industries. Most terminal blocks designed for operation. Push-in spring-clamp
Operation of this type of a screw industry are color coded so that the terminal blocks are being used in more
terminal block is simple: you insert the user can easily determine ground and more applications as their benefits
wire into the open clamp, tighten the wires from hot wires and control wires. are realized.
screw to a specified torque, remove Other options are also available, such With spring-clamp terminal blocks
your screwdriver, and close the as push-in jumpers, partition plats for in general, conductors can be
locking feature over the terminal for a separation (used in wire management), terminated securely in mere seconds,
reliable and safe connection. and large center marking areas for independently of one another and
One of the benefits of using a important information. with absolute reliability. This easy
screw-type terminal block is that installation reduces wiring time by
they can be manufactured for very Spring over 50 percent, while delivering a
high-voltage applications and offer reliable, maintenance-free connection
the maximum in wire efficiency and independent of operator skill. Not only
reliability to the user. These terminal are these terminal blocks versatile,
blocks are supplied with open clamps, offering a reliable gas-tight connection
ready to accept wires. No wire but they are vibration-proof, having no
preparations are necessary because screw to loosen during operation.
the terminal can be accessed easily Spring-Clamp Terminal Blocks Spring-clamp terminal blocks
whether you are using a ferrule or not. There are many benefits to using feature a push-in jumper system with
The terminal block must be able to the latest spring-clamp terminal various available pole configurations.
handle the physical stress of multiple, blocks, the most important being the They allow easy and reliable shorting
large (sizes up to 250 kcmil) wires time it takes for installation. With the connections, and tabs can be easily
mounted in the same general location use of a tool or narrow screwdriver, broken off for across terminal block
as well as handle the large currents push into an insertion space to open shorting applications. Two jumper
going through the wires. This typically a pre-loaded stainless steel spring channels allow the user maximum
means that the terminal block must be (see figure below). Your wire can flexibility.
sturdy and tough and made from high- then be inserted into an opening in These types of terminal blocks
impact materials such as polyamide the spring leg. By removing the tool, can also be used with all sizes of
PA66, self-extinguishing plastics there is a spring force that presses wire and are actually easier to use
whether mounted on a DIN rail or on the conductor against a copper tin- on small wires than a screw-type
the side of a metal enclosure. Once plated current bar for a highly reliable block. They provide a fail-proof and

Sponsored by
Spring Clamp Instructions

1 Insert Flat-Head Screw Driver into insertion

space to open pre-loaded spring.

2 (a) Insert Wire into opening in spring leg.

(b) Remove screwdriver.

3 The spring force presses conductor against

the current bar for a reliable/safe connection.

safe connection with no torque

requirements. Like other terminal
blocks, spring-clamp devices accept
wires with or without ferrules to
provide a completely maintenance free www.altechcorp.com
operation. ALTECH CORPORATION is an es-
This technology also allows DIN rail- tablished United States supplier of
mount terminal blocks to be some of components and devices used in
industrial control, instrumentation,
the industry’s most compact to date.
medical and automation applica-
An added feature to DIN rail devices is
tions. Altech provides a very broad
that the ground connection has been
line of products that meet UL and in-
added to the carrier rail, eliminating ternational standards and are RoHS
the need to provide additional wiring and REACH compliant. Altech’s
steps, reducing the many work steps commitment to continuous quality
involved to a minimum. management has been recognized
Terminal block design and since 1999 when they were awarded
manufacturing has come a long ISO 9001 certification.
way in the past few years due to
the advancements in materials and
the needs of specific applications.
Many manufacturers offer a full line
of components that fit the broadest
uses in the industry. Contacting
and reviewing data sheets on these
components will familiarize you with
what is available and what will best
suit the criteria of your particular
application. n

Sponsored by
Polycarbonate Enclosures for Harsh
and Unprotected Environments
What makes using a polycarbonate enclosure What dificulties might I have when configuring
safe for harsh environments? an enclosure for my components?
Polycarbonate is a very durable material which ofers high impact That depends on the enclosure you purchase, of course. What you’ll
resistance, low scratch resistance, and shatterproof safety to users. want to look for is an enclosure that ofers some sort of extendable,
The material also provides temperature, corrosion, UV, and weather functional installation system with mounting brackets. Make sure
resistance for a wide variety of unprotected environments. the unit you select is usable for mounting plates and standard
rails, ideally at diferent installation heights. You might also look
What do I need to look for, besides for tool-less installation of your mounting bracket for easy and
ruggedness, when it comes to the design time-saving mounting.
of an enclosure for outside use?
Overall design has a lot to do with the right enclosure for your What else might I consider for outside use?
application. For example, if located outside you’ll want to be sure It is always important to make sure the enclosure not only has the
that it’s rainproof and dustproof, even when it has air ventilation technical ratings you need, but also the required certifications for
features as part of the unit. You will want it to have protection ratings your application. Watch for proper certifications you might need,
such as IP 66/IP 67. You may also wish for the unit to be lightweight, including VDE, UL 50, IEC 62208, IEC 61439, and CSA 22.2.
which polycarbonate generally is.
Do I need to consider how to brand my
What type of sealing technology might I look for? company on a purchased enclosure?
There are a lot of ways to seal an enclosure. For example, the Altech Many companies use enclosures as part of their branding. When
GEOS uses a unique enclosure design that actually diverts moisture making a purchase, be certain that the enclosure company ofers
to the back side of the enclosure using an overlapping cover and options for applying branding elements, such as hot embossing,
drain system. This new sealing principle is called “Drain Protect” screen, pad, digital printing, or laser marking.
and discharges moisture by providing a widely overlapping cover
with a built-in drainage channel along the top edge of the enclosure
base to divert moisture to the back side.

Additionally, an elastomer seal provides for optimum protection

from the environment. An elastomer seal provides additional
protection against concerns such as dust and dirt.

What about impact protection?

Good question. Knowing your application is key, but most outdoor
applications do need a greater amount of impact protection.
The right enclosure will most likely ofer a high degree of impact
protection up to IK09 impact rating in order to assure your
equipment doesn’t get damaged.

Functional installation system with mounting bracket. Tool-

less installation of the mounting bracket in 25 mm location points.
Universally usable for mounting plates and standard rails. Diferent
installation heights possible in the assembly bracket. Subsequent
Sponsored by insertion of pre-assembled modules. Partition walls.
Are there adequate ventilation
systems available?
Yes, there are a number of ventilation methods
used. For example, Altech GEOS uses a patented air
ventilation element that prevents condensation while
maintaining an IP65 protection rating. Through the
use of a continuous and high rate of air exchange,
condensation is kept out of the enclosure. This air
exchange takes place even in environments with almost
constant air humidity and temperature changes.

The interior of the enclosure heats up from component

use and, due to the permanent pressure equalization,
all enclosure parts including the seal are permanently
relieved of pressure. The system also provides 100%
protection against foreign bodies entering the
enclosure for maintenance-free operation.

Can I find enclosures that I can

customize to my needs?
Yes. Every application can have its nuances, which
means that you’ll want to be able to customize your
enclosures much of the time. If you choose to work with
a company that ofers customization opportunities,
you’ll save a lot of time and efort. Look for a company
that can customize the enclosures they sell by ofering
milling and printing services.

But it’s not just the outside of the enclosure that

typically needs to be specialized: Some applications
lend themselves to external mounting, while others will
need to be mounted from the inside. You may also want
free choice between screw closure and quick-release
closure. Finally, look for a company that provides a
wide variety of enclosure sizes, with diferent heights,
base sizes, and opaque or transparent cover options.

What might some primary

applications be?
Enclosures made for harsh environments and outdoor
use can provide protection for a wide variety of
applications. Some notable ones might be for any
type of electrical installation, such as those found in
the solar and wind power industry; for large plant or
building heating and air conditioning controls; and
industrial applications such as the food and beverage
industry, where washdown might be expected.

Sponsored by
Understanding and Using E-Stops


Q: What is an e-stop and how is

it used?
A: E-stops, or emergency stop
switches, are used to ensure machine
as well as personnel safety. They are
used to provide a consistent and
predictable failsafe response on a wide
range of electrical machinery and must
stop the machine without creating
additional hazards. The devices can be
highly specialized for emergency
shutdown of equipment and meet
workplace and machine safety
standards established by international
and U.S. regulatory commissions.
Q: Is there a difference between
e-stops and regular stop switches?
A: E-stops provide what can be
considered foolproof equipment
shutdown, and always require a human
action for resetting. Often, the
switch requires an additional step—a accepted designated color for but not limited to industries involving
twist, pull, or key—in order to release shutting off gas lines. Different color vehicles and transportation, medical
the electrical contacts prior to the operators were designed for customers treatment and diagnostics, industrial
machine being in a position to be with specific needs. machinery, oil and gas, food and
beverage, water and waste water,
restarted. As a general standard, Q: What standards must e-stops and instrumentation. Therefore,
e-stops must be a red operator with a adhere to in order to be consid designers will want to have a knowl-
yellow background. Companies often ered properly certified? edge of e-stop fundamentals, and
offer additional product options for A: Always check with your supplier switch characteristics and capabilities,
particular applications. For example, to assure their devices are tested and as well as the international and U.S.
some companies offer the same approved by appropriate institutions standards and compliance require-
operators in various specialty colors. relevant to your application. Some ments that need to be met for their
These non-red operators do not qualify important standards include: application.
as “Emergency Stops,” but can be
applied in a similar way to stop
IEC60947-5-1 and EN60947-5-5; Q: How can I begin to select the
VDE0660; UL508; CSA: C22.2 No. right e-stop for my application?
applications. Black operators are used 14-95; and NEMA Type 4X, 12. These
as a Machine Stop, similar in function are some of the most used in the U.S. A: The first step is to determine
to e-stops, but are simply a different while other compliance and rating where the e-stop fits within your
color. Typical application for these bodies also exist for other countries as machine control system and what
devices is when the machine’s “OFF” well. category of emergency shutdown is
button is required to be manually reset needed according to the standard you
before restarting the machine. Blue Q: What types of applications are are adhering to. The intended
operators are an accepted designated required to have e-stops installed? application often determines the
color for stopping water or sprinkler A: All industry segments mandate electrical and mechanical specifica-
systems, and yellow operators are an e-stops for safe operation, including, tions, as well as the size and place-

Sponsored by Altech Corp.


ment. So, a thorough understanding of

the machinery and associated control
systems is key to making the right
e-stop choice. Requirements vary by
industry segment, therefore standards
for e-stops used in the transportation
industry may differ significantly from
those used on process machinery or
medical equipment, and will be
governed by different regulatory bodies,
provides online access to information that
allows designers to select the panel
opening size, type of actuator, type
and number of contact blocks, and
all the electrical ratings you’ll need to
adhere to.
Q: Are there specific changes in any
of the standards that I should be
aware of?
A: There are continual adjustments
being made to the standards as issues
arise. One of particular interest recently
is concern about generators — a key
component in many industries. The
NEC 2017 standard, for instance, has
recently changed for article 445 on
disconnecting means and shutdown
of prime mover, and should be read
thoroughly before finishing your design.
This new change in the NEC standard
requires the generator installer to
include a lockable disconnecting means,
see picture, that would disable all prime
mover start control circuits—which
would then require a mechanical reset.
This additional shutdown e-stop switch
is to be located outside the equipment
room or enclosure and should not be
installed with an e-stop lockout or a
lockable shroud.
Q: What is the difference between
e-stop lockout shrouds and e-stop
A: E-stop shrouds are usually lockable
and used where safety is a requirement
for the particular application’s specific
design and installation parameters.
E-stop guards, on the other hand, are
not lockable and can be used in any
application where protection of the
operator is required but the operator
has a full access to the e-stop operator.
This guard is meant to prevent the
machine operator from accidentally
bumping into the e-stop while working,
but does not provide a lockout
function. 

Sponsored by Altech Corp.

Top Tips
Specifying an Incremental Encoder

Specifying an incremental encoder is essentially a process of elimination in

which the number of candidate products is reduced as various considerations
are addressed.

Integrating the Encoder into the Equipment
Integration of the encoder depends to a large extent on the equipment itself, and the first consideration is how the encoder
will be mounted, for which there are two basic options. As their names suggest, thru-bore or hollow-bore encoders slide
over and clamp to a shaf, attaching directly to the motor frame through a flexible mount. Shaf encoders usually mount
to a fixed surface and couple to a driven shaf.
Each mounting type has its advantages and disadvantages, and they vary with the equipment. Something else to consider
is the use of a quick electrical disconnect that makes it easy to connect and disconnect the encoder for maintenance and
allows it to be used in multiple locations. Some encoder products have swappable bore sizes, and some are programmable,
so the electronic specifications can be adjusted.

2 Determining Desired Resolution

This key metric is more dificult to specify than it might appear, because if the resolution is too high, encoder cost will
increase unnecessarily and will exceed the output frequencies of the controller. The encoder should remain within the
specifications of the controller. It’s also important to consider that many applications do not require extremely high
resolution, so there’s no need to over-specify it. Conversely, resolution that is too low will likely limit the system’s ability
to accurately control speed or position.

Sponsored by
Top Tips: Specifying an Incremental Encoder 2

3 Selecting the Output Type

Output selection depends on what the controller is designed to accept, and there are four basic types: diferential line
driver, push-pull, open collector, and pull-up (sometimes called open collector with internal pull-up resistors). Diferential
outputs have high noise immunity achieved through “common mode rejection,” in which the diferential receiver cancels
the noise on the line by rejecting any spikes in the signal that do not have a matching inverse on the diferential line.
It’s the best choice when longer cable lengths are used, and it meets RS-422 standards for operation at 5 VDC. Some
Encoder Product Company Accu-Coder™ encoders also have a 5-VDC regulated output that accepts higher input voltage
and regulates the output.
The second output type is push-pull, which does not have the noise immunity of a diferential line driver. This output
can sink or source current, can act as a single-ended line driver, and is also ofen compatible with PNP-type circuits.
The third type is the NPN open collector, which is a current-sinking output type that requires a pull-up resistor apart
from the encoder, typically integrated within the receiving device. This type has the benefit of being able to perform
level shifing, in which the encoder is “pulled up” to a diferent voltage. For example, it can be powered by 5 VDC, but
the output can be increased to 24 VDC.
The last type is called pull-up. It is the same as the open collector type but contains the pull-up resistor within the
encoder, and is useful when neither level shifing or use of external pull-up resistors is desired.
Overall, remember that the controller is ultimately what determines the encoder’s output configuration. If there are
questions about this, Encoder Products Company Technical Services can help.

4 Environmental Considerations
Encoders must be able to endure the same levels of environmental hostility as the
machine they’re part of. If these conditions are not recognized and accommodated when
the encoder is specified, unnecessary maintenance may be required, and operating life
may be reduced. Hostile environmental conditions include exposure to large amounts
of dust, moisture, and caustic chemicals, and possibly even physical damage in the
most demanding cases.
The temperatures to which the encoder will be exposed also a critical consideration.
Encoder Products Company ofers both standard and custom products that can withstand
wide temperature extremes, ranging from −40ᵒC to 120ᵒC. A wide variety of environmental
options are available for all encoders, including the ability to meet various IP seal levels.
In the most extreme cases, encoders can be housed in a sealed, corrosion-proof enclosure. While this adds cost to the
system, it will almost certainly add to the encoder’s operating life and reliability. It may also be possible to use a flexible
drive shaf to the encoder that allows the latter to be located remotely and out of the hostile environment.

Sponsored by
Top Tips: Specifying an Incremental Encoder 3

5 Use a 3D Model
Ensuring the encoder package will fit properly into a design is a vital step in selecting the correct
product. The ability to visualize an encoder is helpful during the specification process. Encoder
Products Company ofers an online 3D “configurator” that makes it much easier to match
an encoder to its application. It supports the native models of Autodesk, Solid Edge,
Solidworks, and many other tools.
Simply choose a product category and a specific product within it, launch the
configurator, and then add the specifications such as bore size, mounting, resolution,
communication type, operating temperature, certification, output, and connector
types. Afer this, select the CAD format from a drop-down list, and the 3D model will
be shown with full rotation and other capabilities. All the specifications are retained
throughout the process and can be used to order the product once it’s configured.

Consider a Programmable Encoder
Programmability allows the encoder to be configured to the exact requirements of an application. Encoder Products
Company’s programmable encoders ofer six diferent output types, 32 diferent waveforms, and any resolution from 1
to 65,536 CPR. This allows a single encoder to be configured for multiple applications, which simplifies inventory and
downtime for replacement.
Encoder Products Company’s programmable encoders are available in shaf, hollow-bore, and thru-bore styles in a wide
range of bore and shaf sizes, mounts, and connector types, and ofer sealing to IP67.

Sponsored by
NEW Network-Capable
Absolute Encoder from EPC
For EtherCAT communication in a precision absolute
encoder, we’ve got your solution.
A58SE with
Clamping Flange fffffffefffmmfffffffffffffffefevefffffffflffefbfefk.ffTfefA58Effeffeff
(top) and Synchro efffdefffwffkfwffffCANfpefffveffEffefCATfffffffffffefffffmflffffwffff
Flange (right)

The A58E Series of Encoders ofer:

 58fmmfpffkffef  Flexfblefflfw-ffffffffdffefwffk-  Upffff16fbfffffffflefffffffefflfffff
 SffffffffHfllfwfBffefffffffffffff ffmpfffblefffdfffffflfEffeffefffflfffff  Upffff43fbffffmflff-ffffffefflfffff
 Vfffefyffffmfffffffffpfffff  Mfffffffedfpfffffffffffffmffffffeveff

A58HE with Hollow Bore

EtherCAT Master

PLC Controller
Servo Motor

Call EPC today to learn how an EtherCAT absolute encoder can fit your application.

1-800-366-5412 | www.encoder.com

A typical manufacturing plant today will have thousands, or

even many thousands, of electrical connections on both
fxed equipment and moving machines. And it’s just a matter of
Power and signal disruptions have many mechanical and electrical
causes, everything from forklift accidents to over-current conditions.
time before some of those connections fail or wear out, bringing
With all the mission-critical electrical connections in a modern
production machines to a dead stop. One way to minimize this
plant, downtime from damaged electrical connections is a matter of
downtime is to “connectorize” power and signal cables.
“when” not “if.”
Multi-conductor cables can often be replaced in just minutes if they
Think of connectors as a low-cost insurance policy against this
have connectors at both ends. Hard-wiring that same cable could
downtime. While connectors do add a small premium to the initial
take hours.
cost of cabling, they will pay for themselves many times over if they
eliminate even a few minutes of downtime on a busy production line.

LAPP 29 Hanover Road, Florham Park, NJ 07932 T. 800 774 3539 www.lappusa.com
For all their downtime-prevention benefits, there is one problem A NEW CONNECTOR FOR HARSH
with connectors. Call it “connector confusion.”
There are currently dozens of connector varieties and thousands
of individual connectors on the market, and even experienced Connectors often have to operate in corrosive, electrically
engineers can find it difficult to select the right connector for the noisy or mechanically challenging environments. Our latest
job at hand. connector housings have been designed to thrive in these
Fortunately, connector confusion can be minimized by gathering
information on four key technical factors. This information is readily Resists Corrosion. Called EPIC® ULTRA, this new rectangular
available to any engineer who has already sized the application’s connector housing features nickel-plated zinc hoods and
power or signal cables: bases with stainless-steel hardware. Together, these
corrosion-resistant materials allow the new housing to
• Number of contacts. It may seem obvious that the number of
survive in applications that that would prove challenging for
contacts in the connector should match or exceed the number
traditional painted aluminum housings.
in the cable. But one common mistake is to miscount by not
considering the ground. Cable conductor counts typically These applications include equipment installed in outdoor
include ground while connectors do not. coastal and off-short settings–such as wind farms, marinas,
and amusement parks. EPIC® ULTRA is also intended for use
• Wire gauge (AWG). Cable’s wire gauge needs to be within the
in indoor washdown areas–such as those found in food and
allowed range of the connector contacts. In general, screw
beverage plants, wineries and breweries.
contacts will accommodate a broader range of wire gauges
than comparable crimped contacts. Resists Electrical Noise. EPIC® ULTRA features an integrated
brush-style cable gland, which provides a fast and easy
• Cable outside diameter (OD). This fundamental piece of
method to terminate a cable shield with a 360-degree, low
dimensional information is too often overlooked during
resistance contact area. Along with the nickel-plated housing,
the specification process. Forgetting OD can have serious
the SKINTOP® forms a conductive shell–or Faraday cage–
consequences. If the OD of the cable is too small relative to
around the electrical contacts to virtually eliminate electrical
the housing, a poor seal will result, creating a performance
issue. If the OD is too big, the cable may not fit in the housing
easily or at all, creating a potentially costly installation issue. Resists Mechanical Damage. EPIC® ULTRA’s unique
mechanical design improves both sealing and strain relief.
• Maximum voltage & current. Always double check to make
For one thing, the connector housing’s built-in cable gland
sure the application’s voltage and current are within the
not only improves sealing and strain relief but also speeds
rated capacity of the connector. For safety’s sake, this is the
assembly and eliminates a possible leakage point. For
cardinal rule of specifying connectors.
another,the lip seal between the top and bottom housing
Taken together, these factors determine whether the connector components has been recessed so it is totally enclosed by the
will function as a true extension of a given cable. It’s important to housing when mated and latched. This design
emphasize that all four factors must be taken into consideration. feature protects it from mechanical damage
A connector, for instance, may meet the requirements on number and exposure to UV radiation when
of contacts, wire gauge and outside diameter but not satisfy the installed outdoors.
application’s current or voltage requirements.

The four key connector factors should be thought of as a starting

point. They don’t capture the effects of difficult operating
environments or unusual electrical requirements. But they will
help you quickly narrow down the otherwise overwhelming field of
connector products. The new EPIC® ULTRA housing is designed
for use in harsh operating conditions and is
compatible with a wide range of electrical
inserts and termination methods.

LAPP 29 Hanover Road, Florham Park, NJ 07932 T. 800 774 3539 www.lappusa.com
When hardening electrical transmission
systems against electromagnetic
interference, engineers should pay
special attention to connectors and
cable glands. These connection
technologies, if improperly designed,
can become the “weak link” in
the shielding chain that ultimately
determines the electromagnetic
compatibility (EMC) of an electrical
transmission system.
And unlike cables, connection
technologies have not been covered
by global design directives for EMC.
So it has been up to individual
manufacturers to make sure that their
connectors and cable glands provide
adequate shielding performance.
Connection technologies with the best EMC performance have With cable glands, the maximum shielding performance can be
been designed to minimize resistance between the cable shield achieved in designs that integrate the gland into the connector
and ground. In connectors, both goals can be achieved by housing. These designs not only have benefcial shielding
creating a large-area contact between the cable shielding and a implications, they also eliminate a potential leak path between
highly-conductive, sealed connector housing. This arrangement the connector housing and the strain relief, which increases the
allows the connector housing to function as Faraday cage, ability of the connector assembly to tolerate harsh operating
blocking electromagnetic interference. conditions.



HA X X 3,4,10,16,32,48,64 (+PE) 600V 10A, 14A SC 20-14

HBE X X 6,10,16,24,32,48 (+PE) 600V 16A SC,CR,CC 20-14, 20-12

HBS X 6,12 (+PE) 600V 35A SC 20-10

HBVE X 3,6,10 (+PE) 600V 16A SC 20-14


HD X 7,8,15,25,40,50,64,80,128 (+PE) 600V 10A CR,FO 26-14

HDD X X 24,42,72,108,144,216 (+PE) 600V 8.5A CR 26-14

HEE X X 10,18,32,46,64,92 (+PE) 600V 16A CR 20-12

HQ X X 5 (+PE) 600V 16A CR 20-14

MC X X X 2 to 280, Data Bus (+PE), Pneumatic 63-1000V 10-82A SC,CR,CC,FO,HO 28-4

MP X 4/0, 4/2, 4/8 (+PE) 600V 80/16A SC 16-6,20-14

STA X 6,14,20,40 48V 10A SC,SOL 20-16

EAB X 2,3,4,5,6,7,8,7+2,10,11,14,14+2,17,19,24,26,37 200,500,900V 13,23,46A CR 18-16,14-12,8

EAC X 2,3,4,5,6,7,8,7+2,10,11,14,14+2,17,19,24,26,37 200,500,900V 13,23,46A CR 18-16,14-12,8


EPT X X 3,5,6,7,8,8+4,10,14+1,16,18,19,21,22+1,26,41,55 600,1000V 7.5,13A CR 24-20,20-16

LS1 X 5+PE, 3+PE+4 600V 22/7A CR 20-14,24-18

M23 X X 6,7,8+1,9,12,16,17 150,100,50V 14,7A CR,SOL 18-14,24-18

MultiMax X 1+N+PE, 2+PE, 2+N+PE, 3+PE, 3+N+PE 125-600V 16-32A SC 12,8


CEE X 1+N+PE, 2+PE, 2+N+PE, 3+PE, 3+N+PE 125-500V 16-125A SC 12,8,6

ULYSSE X 1+N+PE, 2+PE, 2+N+PE, 3+PE, 3+N+PE 125-500V 16-63A SC 12,8,6

ALUPRES X 1+N+PE, 2+PE, 2+N+PE, 3+PE, 3+N+PE 125-500V 16-63A SC 12,8,6

Termination Type: SC = Screw, CR = Crimp, CC = Cage Clamp, FO = Fiber Optic, SOL = Solder, HO = Hose

LAPP 29 Hanover Road, Florham Park, NJ 07932 T. 800 774 3539 www.lappusa.com

ETHERLINE®: Data Communication Systems

for Ethernet Technology
LAPP’s ETHERLINE® cables and connectors provide fast, secure and reliable
network connectivity in demanding industrial and process control environments—
guaranteeing the long-term success of your automation efforts.
• High data transmission rate
• Company-wide access to data
• Better process monitoring and control
• EMI protection
• Category 5, 5e, 6, 6a or 7
• Fast assembly—RJ45 or M12 connectors
• Stationary, continuous flex and torsion options
• Supports common Industrial Ethernet protocols, including PROFINET,
EtherNet/IP and EtherCAT
To learn more, visit https://lappusa.lappgroup.com/etherline-cables-and-wires.html




R Series Sensors and

R Series V Sensors for
Industrial 4.0 Applications
The fifth generation of the Temposonics® R-Series line of sensors, produces the strain pulse that now
the new R-Series V, has greatly expanded the capability and travels at sonic speed along the
performance benefits for users with a new platform for Industry sensor waveguide until the pulse
4.0 and Smart Manufacturing. The last major generation for the is detected at the head of the
Temposonics technology was in 2004, when the current R-Series transducer. The moving magnet’s
was introduced—and has continued to evolve since. position is precisely determined by
measuring the elapsed time between
WHEN THE FOURTH technology. the application of the current pulse
GENERATION R-SERIES was and the arrival of the strain pulse. This
introduced, it was available in a choice Magnetostriction Technology produces a highly reliable position
of rod-, profile-, detached-, and Temposonics technology is based measurement system capable of
flex style configurations with stroke on the principles of magnetostriction, providing an accurate and repeatable
lengths from 25 mm to 7,620 mm which is used to create a position measurement.
and 255 mm to 10,060 mm. Rod measurement system for industrial
style units are designed to work with applications. A momentary interaction Fifth-Generation Features
hydraulic cylinders, while profile style of two magnetic fields produced Users have been requesting more
units facilitate machine mounting. Flex inside the sensor is used to produce information about the condition of their
style units are for applications that a torsional strain pulse. One field applications, such as sensor status,
require long stroke lengths and linear comes from a moving magnet passing internal temperature, total operation
measurements on an arc. along the outside of the transducer hours, and distance traveled. This
Each addition to the product family tube, while the other field is generated information is now stored onboard the
added more features through the from a current pulse applied to the sensor and is available through the
latest technologies, and each version waveguide. The interaction between company’s optional TempoLink Smart
was designed to easily interface like these two magnetic fields is what Assistant. The TempoLink device can
the previous version. Through the
years, additional electrical interfaces
were added, such as Ethernet
protocols, and accessories and
options were created to expand the
features and capabilities, all built
on the advantages of Temposonics

Sponsored by
the same. You would use the same
fasteners, the same rod and profile,
and the same versions of the threaded
This leaves only the base unit that
must be replaced. Note that the
hydraulic system remains sealed
during the replacement process. The
base unit can be mounted directly
onto an existing R-Series 2004 flange
with no problem.
Because of the smaller sensor
electronics, the actual housing for the
active components is 37% shorter
than the previous model, which
access the sensor diagnostics and devices. allows additional space for future
configuration of the R-Series V sensor As the highest performance sensor maintenance and repair.
through Communication Over Power available for the most advanced The newer model also maintains
Line (COPL) technology for display on versions of Profinet iRT or EtherNet/ complete electrical compatibility,
a user’s device such as a smartphone, IP™, the R-Series V provides including identical connector sizes,
tablet, or PC. resolution down to 0.5 micrometer, connector types, and identical
It also provides a Wi-Fi access point a sampling rate up to 4 kHz with connector wiring.
to connect from a user’s device and extrapolation for high-speed motion
enables interaction with the sensor control, multi-position measurement Decades of Data Monitoring
using a browser. of up to 30 position magnets for and Storage
As Industry 4.0 becomes even position and velocity measurements, Although previous versions of the
more widespread, there is a need and is compatible with a wide range of Temposonics device provided data
for components that work within magnets (including some competitors’ monitoring capabilities, the latest
this holistic environment. The magnets), making it one of the most version provides many advanced
R-Series V sensors are designed versatile devices of its type. features and the ability to store
and manufactured to adapt to a wide statistics in the sensor memory. For
variety of applications. They have Implementing the New Sensor operational statistics, the R-Series
been designed with a 100% increase Since the R-Series V is a V provides total distance traveled,
in vibration resistance (up to 30 g continuation of the Temposonics total operation time, number of
over the entire stroke range) and 50% Sensor, switching from a previous actuator cycles, and total time above
increase in shock resistance (up to version of the device to the newer temperature limit, making evaluation
150 g/11ms over the entire stroke R-Series V is simple. All major easy and quick. Further system
range) over the previous R-Series mounting hardware has remained errors like measurement errors and
communication errors,
as well as operational
violations such as max
temperature and out
of parameter input
supply voltage, are
continuously monitored
for the user. In fact,
these diagnostics can
be acquired by the
unit up to 30 years
depending on sampling

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ranges reaching from -40o C up to
+85o C. The sensors integrate easily
into harsher and rougher applications
than prior models, yet still provide
precise measurement data up to 0.5
micrometers. Applications for the
Temposonics R-Series V include,
metalworking equipment, plastics
machinery, lumber and paper
production, all forms of automation,
and a number of additional hazardous
areas like nuclear power plants and
chemical blending equipment.

Industry 4.0 monitoring excursions in the power

and IIoT supply, signal quality, or temperature
With the market quickly moving could help identify machine states
to smart sensors, it’s important to that could lead to failure and possible
note that the R-Series V sensors downtime. With the additional
are leading the way as a platform information provided by the R-Series
for current and future trends with V sensors, customers can minimize
Industry 4.0 and the Industrial downtime and maximize machine
Internet of Things (IIoT). The R-Series productivity.
V provides users with new types
of information and new ways to Conclusion
access the information as part of The new generation of R-Series
overall machine health monitoring, V linear position sensors provide
along with other connected devices. more performance, robustness, and
For example, information like the reliability than ever before. Because REQUEST FOR MORE
number of actuator cycles and total of the latest materials, electronics INFORMATION
distance traveled could assist with components, and engineering
scheduling preventative maintenance capabilities, the R-Series V can ABOUT MTS SENSORS
for the actuator system. Additionally, operate in extended temperature MTS SENSORS, a division of MTS
Systems Corporation (NASDAQ:
MTSC), is the pioneer of Temposon-
Identical connector sizes
ics® magnetostrictive technology
and a worldwide manufacturer of
non-contact linear position sensors
and liquid level transmitters that
enable reliable feedback control
for automation and safety applica-
tions. In July 2016, MTS Systems
Corporation (Eden Prairie, MN, USA)
acquired PCB Piezotronics, Inc.
(Depew, NY, USA), vastly expanding
the range of products and solutions
of MTS Sensors. Visit MTS Sensors
LEDs visualize at www.mtssensors.com and PCB
Identical connector
wiring sensor status Piezotronics, Inc. at www.pcb.com.
Additional information on MTS can
be found at www.mts.com.
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Top Tips: Building Your
Innovation Muscle
In the Hollywood view of innovation, it’s a ‘light bulb’ moment when someone instantly
comes up with an idea that rapidly materializes into a world-changing product.

In the real world, innovation needs to be far more practical and repeatable. For
organizations that have developed the skills necessary to innovate continuously, they
treat it not as an activity, but rather as a competency that can be learned. It’s a muscle
that is trained so it can fex and drive ideas for better products.

These questions were designed to help you make innovation part of your
daily routine.

What could we look at in a new way? Using

1 visualization techniques to get a new perspective can get the
creative juices fowing. Modern CAD packages often have
visualization packages built in, so you can look at your design
in 2D, as a 3D solid, or even in simulation. Then consider the
design’s goals and try out some novel ways to meet them.

What could we use in a new way? Is there a new technology

2 that could be a game-changer for your design? Or is there a different
way you could use the space you have? Try generative design techniques that use a
computer to consider the most effcient use of material to meet design goals that you input.

What could we move? In the manufacturing setting, would moving operations or equipment,
3 whether in time or space, result in a more effcient production line? Are there features that could be moved to
create a more seamless user experience? A combination of direct modeling and feature-based modeling can make
it easier to try repositioning components.

What could we interconnect in a different way? Modern CAD systems enable real-time collaboration
4 between engineering departments that used to work separately. How can mechanical and electrical systems
interconnect for a better user experience or more effciency? Also consider techniques like additive manufacturing
that make it possible to combine multiple parts.

What could we change? What would make the design more robust? What would improve the design’s
5 performance? What would make the user experience more seamless? CAD packages that seamlessly integrate
simulation capabilities make it easy to test out proposed changes.

What could we make that is truly new? Innovation does not need to be the new big thing,
6 but an innovative culture can often produce original ideas. Having a modern engineering
toolkit at your fngertips makes it easy to bring your creative ideas one step closer to reality. Make sure your
engineering toolkit
What could we imagine to create a better experience for someone? We have has what you need

7 hundreds of user experiences each day. We come to accept that some of these experiences
are going to be less than stellar, but what if they really could be improved. How could you
to strengthen your
innovation muscle and
meet your design goals if the sky was the limit? see where your ideas
can take you.

To learn how Autodesk Product Design and Manufacturing Collection can help
you be more innovative, visit www.autodesk.com/build-innovation-muscle.

To talk to Autodesk sales, call 844-746-5448

perform to their potential, which leads

Standard File Folders to dissatisfaction on the job and a lack

of creativity.
Most design engineers manage

and Product Data their onslaught of data by saving

specific files to easily recognizable
folders on their personal workstations

Today’s design engineers are continually asked to innovate while
or on a shared network with other
engineers from the company. This
requires a strict methodology in how
trying to maintain forward momentum and put out fires. What they to name and save files that is easy for
need is more time so they can innovate. everyone to understand, as well as
make sure that files that have more
ON AVERAGE, DESIGN multiple engineers have worked on than one place they can connect get
ENGINEERS spend 15% or more them—often at the same time—and either copied and filed in two places—
of their time managing the data they maintaining their own organization which can cause its own problems—
create. Some spend a day a week. through spreadsheets that document or is cleared through a manager who
This may sound extreme, but consider every instance where parts and knows the hierarchy well enough to
the tasks that must be performed subassemblies are used. put the file in its proper place.
for almost every design: searching These tasks alone take up a lot of Product Data Management
for files that need to be edited the time needed to innovate, leaving applications are much different
or reused, defining and repairing engineers struggling to come up with and can be tailor-made to the
broken relationships between new ideas on borrowed time or during requirements of the engineering teams
files when they’ve been copied, off hours. This is so stressful that who need to rely on it. PDM provides
correcting overwritten files once many engineers find it impossible to greater protection of your intellectual
property and provides an audit trail
Submit and Force Approval
of your entire development process.
Withdraw Fast Track Approval Even though both file folders and
PDM applications perform the same
Submit Submit Submit Approve purpose—to easily store and organize
your engineering data—the ability
Set Effectively
for PDM to understand engineering
Re-Open Reject metadata leads to big differences
CLOSED when it comes to the time it takes to
Cancel find what you need when you need it.
Cancel After all, storing data in file folders
means that you have to search for
Autodesk Vault PDM software performs important organizational tasks your engineering team file names. As mentioned, if multiple
does now using different formats that are more complex, take up more time, and may cause engineers are using the same folders,
mistakes. For example, PDM software helps streamline engineering change processes, which there has to be a strict ruling on how
is likely to have a positive impact on your engineering teams’ efficiency and productivity. to name files to be sure they’re in the

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right place—few people think alike
under these circumstances.
The benefit with using a PDM
system is that you can perform a
search for properties imbued by the
CAD system it was designed in. This
means everything from materials
and suppliers, to part descriptions
and authors, as well as anyone who
might be currently working on the
file. Further, custom properties can
be selected as well. Anything unique
to your company that makes sense
to you can be used, allowing for
individuality from each person using
the system. Plus, multiple search copied and immediately worked on also handled with more fluency. Rather
criteria can be used to narrow the for use in a new design. And because than renaming files using standard
results. Once you have all your data these relationships are understood V1, V2, etc. file names, PDM software
in one location, you will be able to by the PDM system, it is easy to see automatically revisions the file on
improve other engineering processes, where parts or subassemblies that are check-in so that everyone can see the
such as design reuse, engineering common across multiple designs are full development of the file through
change orders, product releases, used. history.
bills of materials, and product For example, if you want to find a We’ve covered a lot of ground,
customization. particular gear that was created by but want to reiterate that time is your
Why is this important? Consider another team member for a project engineering team’s most valued
that there are most likely thousands of that ended several years ago, there is commodity. Autodesk Vault PDM
files created by your engineering team. no need to remember the file name. software performs many of the
Allowing them to search for files their Use the exact specification in the mundane organizational tasks your
own way saves considerable time and search window to find the part quickly. engineering team is now doing,
energy, and eliminates them having Note that you can still use folders to most likely using different formats.
to keep a spreadsheet that might not organize data at the top level, so you Why not provide them with PDM
contain all the files needed for the have the option to browse within that software to help with their life cycle
particular job they’re working on. PDM narrower set of data as well. management, which is likely to have a
also comes with saved searches, so Using shared network folders positive impact on their efficiency and
your engineers don’t have to repeat offers additional challenges. Since productivity as well? Not only that, but
their process of defining the same engineering team members all have what they really want (and what the
fields for common searches. access to design data, managing company wants) is to gain back their
3D CAD files are inherently complex, permissions becomes an arduous 15+% percent of time so that they can
with relationships between files that feat, especially if two engineers are be the innovative engineers they know
require repair if severed, halting a working on the same file at the same they can be.
project from moving forward right from time. PDM makes it easy to set
the start. File folders used to manage permissions for different roles. For
these relationships can work, but only example, your manufacturing team REQUEST FOR MORE
if the files have not been copied or may only get access to files that have INFORMATION
renamed outside of the authorizing been released by engineering, so that
To learn more about how Autodesk
CAD application. The benefit with if the work is still in progress, it doesn’t
Vault can help your team free up
PDM is that these relationships are move forward (causing wasted time).
time for innovation, visit
understood. An engineer can rename With a check-in and check-out
or copy designs without the risk of system, PDM is able to lock down files autodesk.com/difference-pdm
losing it. that are actively being worked on so
To talk to Autodesk sales, call
In fact, entire assemblies, along that you don’t end up with overwritten 844-287-1565
with selected component files, can be data. Maintaining the proper version is

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Sof Magnetic Composites

in Motor Applications
What are sof magnetic composites?
Sof magnetic composites (SMCs) are components made by applying
powder metallurgy techniques to metal powders with magnetic
properties. SMCs are generally made by compressing metal powder
in a tool and following up with a heat treatment.

The metal powders that form the basis of SMCs consist of high-purity
iron particles individually coated with an electrically insulating coating.
One example is Somaloy from Höganäs AB (Sweden). The powder
metallurgy process combines with the powder’s specific properties to
create parts with three-dimensional magnetic properties.

Where can they be used in motors?

SMCs have been used to improve the performance of claw pole motors
that appear in applications like automobile alternators, consumer lost to heat. This eäect is compounded at high operating frequencies,
appliances, and printers. In these motors, SMCs form precisely shaped making them an ideal choice to minimize losses.
claws or inductors that fit these space-saving designs.
For example, Somaloy 700HR 3P, compressed to 7.52 g/cm3 density, has
Linear tubular motors also use SMCs in their inner and outer stators a resistivity of 600 µΩ-m and a permeability, µmax, of 770. Its magnetic
in applications that call for precise and repeatable linear actuation. flux density, B, is 1.57 T at a field strength, H, of 10,000 A/m. Under
In these applications, they provide a broader spectrum of position those conditions, the power loss is approximately 9.5 W/kg at 50 Hz.
control than pneumatic actuators.
How do SMCs improve physical design?
In axial flux motors and yokeless axial motors, the magnetic flux paths With SMCs, two aspects of three-dimensional design open up design
are parallel to the motor axle as opposed to radial through the air options for motor engineers. First, the material’s 3D flux capability
gap between the rotor and the stator. These flat motors work well lets designers think outside the box when shaping their motors’
with the 3D flux paths made possible through SMCs. Designers are magnetic components.
turning to these motors for their high power and torque densities
and space-saving design that make them ideal for electric vehicles Secondly, powder metal processing techniques make it easier to
(EVs), pumps, fans, compressors, valve control, hoists, and power manufacture complex 3D parts. Like polymer injection molding and
and wind generators. metal casting, powder metallurgy enables part consolidation for parts
that are ultimately lighter and take up less space.
How do SMCs improve magnetic performance?
The Somaloy 700HR 3P material mentioned above, for example, has a
The materials that make up SMCs, like Somaloy, aren’t hindered by
transverse rupture strength (TRS) of 120 MPa. No change in strength is
the two-dimensional flux paths that form in stacked magnets or sheet
seen when testing the material at an elevated temperature of 150°C.
metal laminations. A 3D flux path creates high flux density and high
magnetic permeability, allowing for a more compact motor design
and simplified assembly.
How do SMCs improve assembly?
In addition to giving designers more freedom to shape motor
The individual particles that form SMCs are coated with an electrically components to their specific applications, SMCs make motors easier
insulating material, so parts made from the powder have high resistivity. to assemble. The laminated stacks of sheet metal stampings that are
This keeps the bulk eddy current in the material low, so less energy is used in many motors are time-consuming to assemble. In addition,

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each assembly must be checked to ensure it has the right
number of layers in each stack to maintain uniform motor
performance. Somaloy® May Be The
Components made from SMCs, on the other hand, permit Best Solution For
error-proof assembly and optimize part geometry. SMCs
let designers take advantage of the material’s improved Your Electric Motor
magnetic properties to save space. Some designers have
used SMCs to take the winding step out of the assembly Applications
process by sliding pre-wound bobbins over the legs of the
Somaloy® is a Soft Magnetic HIGH Applications:
stator or other SMC object.
Composite (SMC) material PERFORMANCE Electric Motors
How are motor components created which utilizes pressed and COMPACT Claw Pole and Linear Tubular Pole motors.

thermally-treated powder metal DESIGN Benefits:

from SMCs? • Potential size/weight reduction
The process of manufacturing motor components from to produce components with 3D magnetic • Fewer parts and ease of assembly
through elimination of laminate stacks
SMCs is similar to other powder metallurgy processes. properties. These encapsulated iron powder
• Higher Fill Factor
These processes always begin with precise blending of particles are compacted to form uniform isotropic • Yields increased power density
a variety of powders to achieve the desired properties. components with complex shapes in a single step. Fast Switching Actuators and
In the case of SMCs, the refined, coated-particle powder The use of these materials makes innovative Power Transformers
arrives pre-blended from the powder supplier. electrical machine designs technologically viable. Benefits:
• Faster actuation (up to 50%)
• Cost-efficient production
Contact one of our
The SMC powder is loaded into part-specific tools that
ensure it is compacted to the desired shape. Compaction
Material Benefits:
pressures and temperatures vary depending on the Applications Engineers for n High resistivity
powders, geometries, and end properties desired. For High flux density
help with your design needs.
SMCs, compaction pressures and temperatures vary to n Tight tolerances achievable
achieve densities as high as 7.57 g/cm3. n Low core losses at high frequencies
n High permeability
Afer molding, the “green” part needs to be heat treated n 3D flux paths
to bond the individual metal particles together. Heat n Net shape capability
treatment temperatures can range from 530°C to 650°C
depending on the material system used. Diferent heat Illustration
treatment atmospheres—including air, steam, and courtesy of
Höganäs AB,
nitrogen—can yield diferent results. Sweden

How can I learn more about SMCs?

More and more motor designers are considering the
performance, form factor, and cost benefits of SMCs for
magnetic motor components. However, the range of
available materials and design options can be daunting.
Look for material specs on the websites of material
suppliers like Höganäs AB

Also consult with companies like Symmco that are

experienced in powder metal manufacturing in general
and with SMCs for motor components in particular. They
have information about the manufacturing process, part 40 South Park Street
options, and material selection on their websites. They Sykesville, PA 15865
also have engineers available to answer your questions Phone: 814.894.2461
E-mail: sales@symmco.com
about designing with SMCs.

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Goldense on R&D-Product Development
BRADFORD L. GOLDENSE | Contributing Technical Expert

Product Design
Awards Increase
Company Value
Do you place your products in design competitions?

his is an exciting new age for product develop- advancement, design attractiveness, and more. Our first study
ers and their companies, not just for all the new looked at the market effect across all categories, regardless of
technologies that can be incorporated in designs, type. It found that winning an award of any type had even more
but also for the management science surrounding impact than announcements made during development.
the creation and launch of products containing those new tech- Our second awards study reinforces this finding but focused
nologies. Big data and analytics, having reached critical mass a just on “design attractiveness” awards that are specific to indus-
decade ago and now doubling in capability every year, are now trial design, aesthetics, and usability. It involved only award-
available to a much wider global audience of business research- winning announcements and did not look at product announce-
ers. Management science is also beginning to blossom. We are ments made during development and early commercialization.
far from a comprehensive understanding of any decision or Award. The second study examined standard deviations
technique, but several studies in roughly the same areas are on stock returns of 264 companies that announced winning
emerging in many important R&D management areas. “The design awards for commercialized products from 1998 through
value of design” is one of those areas. Emerging science shows 2011 (S+B, PwC, Spring 2017). It also cited journaled research
you get the best market value by communicating your design (Xia, POM, June 2016). As a highly focused study, it more
intent to the marketplace in advance, and then turning out a deeply quantified actual market reactions to award-winning
design that scores big in awards competitions. That said, no one designs. It looked at the two-day period after the announce-
has studied the combination of pre-launch announcements ment and chronicled the results. As you may have guessed, it
and winning design competitions. But there is an interesting was positive. The impact was greater for small and mid-size
study for each area and you’ll likely draw the same conclusion. companies. Across all sizes, market impact was tangible.
Announcement. The first study has been available to prac- Award Value. After removing the noise from the findings,
titioners for a while (Sood & Tellis, PDMA Visions, October stock price increases following announcements of winning a
2009). It makes a great example of the refinement of man- design award ranged from 0.95% to 1.02%. Yes, a 1% bump in
agement science. As an early study, it was seeking to simply stock price for publicizing a design win on a single product.
explore the market impact of public product announcements It definitely impacts a project’s ROI. Consumer-style designs
of product concepts through early commercializations. Prod- had greater increases than did industrial products. Consumer
ucts are “announced” several times in many ways by com- product design decisions are also likely to be further influ-
panies. How did the markets and stock price react to those enced by this finding.
various announcements as the product proceeded during and Announcements + Awards. It is hard to argue that the two
development and launch? Which announcements generated studies make a compelling case that performance-to-promise
the biggest market effect? pays itself back. Companies that carefully manage product
Announcement Value. It turns out that markets react posi- announcements during development, deliver on the promises
tively to announcements of innovations at every instance. of their product, then find their way to the top in awards com-
There is no such thing as a bad announcement, unless petitions, will likely see their stock price climb higher. Walking
you exaggerate. Be careful not to over-promise. And don’t the talk and then winning awards boosts companies and the
try to game the system. Markets can sense blatant adver- value of the innovators and managers who make it possible.
tising announcements from true product announcements.
Announcements that generate the largest market value, which BRADFORD L. GOLDENSE is founder and president of Gold-
might be not be intuitive, are those made during development, ense Group Inc. (GGI; www.goldensegroupinc.com), a consult-
not during commercialization. ing, market research, and education firm focused on business
Management Science. There are many different types of and technology management strategies and practices for product
awards: social impact, invention, market success, technological creation, development, and commercialization.


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