Merging modern software development with electrons and metal
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Posts from — November 2014

One Reason I Love Automation

Parker Bayside R100D

Parker Bayside R100D

One reason I love automation is that I get to play with cool stuff like this Parker Bayside rotary stage.  It’s a jewel; besides have cool specifications, it just feels so good in my hands – and looks beautiful.  The LED angle display is another groovy touch.

There’s a little history behind this purchase.  Many years ago, I got to evaluate its big brother, the R200D, at work, and fell in love.  Unfortunately, the R200D didn’t work out for that application, but when I saw this R100D at a semi-reasonable price (and much cheaper than new, which would around $4,000), I couldn’t resist.

It’s a direct-drive rotary stage, so there are no gears, just a big brushless servo motor, bearings, and a super high resolution encoder.  One down side of the direct drive is that the rotary table can spin when there’s no power, which can be a problem.

For initial testing, I connected it to a Copley Accelnet ACP-055-18 with a Logosol LS1148 power supply, and used Copley’s automatically generated parameters.  That doesn’t seem like the ideal combination; either I need a different drive with a higher voltage power supply, or I need to do some serious tuning.

Another reason I love having this stage is that it’s so different from all the other motors I own.  For example, it has 12 poles (all my other motors have 4 or 6 poles), and an inductance of 50 mH.

Blog Notes

Since many of my posts take quite a bit of work to create (especially the series posts, such as the Robot Primer), I am going to try to reduce the size of each post so I can provide more frequent content updates.

November 14, 2014   No Comments

Cool Components: Ultra High Speed Motors And Drives

Most motors I’ve seen spin at the leisurely rate of 6000 RPM or less (heck, many are limited to 3000 RPM).

My Emoteq BH02300’s can do 20,000 RPM.

I’ve drooled over the specs for motors from Emoteq, Pittman, and Maxon that can do 60,000->100,000 RPM.  (Yes, I’d love to own one).

But a Swiss company, Celeroton, takes the cake: they have motors and controllers that can do 500,000 RPM!  Those must be totally groovy.

Celeroton sells brushless motors, drives, and compressors that use  their motors and electronics.  The drives have a minimum speed of 5000 RPM; some models can handle up to 1,000,000 RPM maximum speed.  The drives (or inverters, as Celeroton calls them) are available in 400W to 3Kw models, and are sensorless (no hall effect, encoder, or other sensors required).

A friend is looking into using the Celeroton drives with a merely fast motor (~100,000 RPM).  If I get any real world feedback from him, I’ll update this post.

November 4, 2014   No Comments