Automatically find the perfect automation solution

11. Oct 2017 item Redaktion

Find out how intelligent software is simplifying the configuration and commissioning of linear technology – and opening up new areas of application.

Over the last few years, the term automation has become a buzzword for trends in machinery and plant engineering. Automation solutions are particularly useful in production, where consistent, precise processes significantly increase efficiency and deliver a constant level of quality. On the one hand, linear technology provides the ideal technical basis for this but, on the other, it has also been the very reason why many companies have decided not to automate a process that seems ideally suited to it. The simple reason for this is that linear technology can only deliver the desired performance boost when it consists of a perfectly customised combination of Linear Unit, Motor, Gearbox and Controller.

The simple way to find the perfect linear technology configuration

There are endless combinations of linear guide and drive technology. Indeed, for many potential users, the effort and costs involved in researching and designing a bespoke solution for a specific application outweigh the advantages of automation based on linear technology. And that is without taking into account the outlay for building, programming, and setting up a programmable logic controller (PLC). This was precisely the issue the development team behind the item linear motion units© aimed to address.

To ensure automation can be configurated perfectly and, above all, easily, web-based item MotionDesigner© guides users through the process of creating the best possible configuration of linear technology for their specific needs. For example, the configurator considers the repeatability, on-site electrical supply, and other technical parameters. Other criteria are related to the question whether the solution is destined for use in a highly contaminated environment or very clean conditions.

By specifications about the mounting position and motion profile, MotionDesigner© can provide a customised recommendation out of the thousands of potential combinations. All that remains is to specify the desired installation position, and the solution can be ordered direct from the online configurator. Alongside the optimised turnkey linear technology solution, the tool also highlights any accessories that could be useful.

Fast commissioning of a customised turnkey solution

The item linear motion unit© is delivered as a preassembled, ready-to-install turnkey solution. All cables and connectors are colour-coded, making connection quick, easy and safe. Another software solution – item MotionSoft© – links seamlessly with MotionDesigner© functions to ensure easy commissioning. This intelligent software leads the user – within a controlled process – through the various steps of putting into operation, checks the entire system independently, and determines the optimum parameter settings for operations. 

All in all, this not only saves a lot of time during commissioning, but using item MotionSoft© also often eliminates the need for an additional programmable logic controller (PLC) for operations. You don’t need to be an expert to carry out the commissioning process. Since everything interlinks seamlessly, several worksteps are saved and mistakes are avoided, which otherwise cost a lot of time and money.

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