- Register


Home >Get a stepper head

Get a stepper head

25 February 2016

CDA takes a look at the latest product developments in stepper technology.

Integrated motors, stepper or servo motors supplied with built in drives and motion controls are becoming more commonly specified for a wide range of automated machine applications. US-based Applied Motion Products, represented in the UK and Europe by Mclennan, has evolved this concept with a new range of cost effective integrated stepper motors that include closed loop servo feedback - offering benefits and wide-ranging capabilities for applications such as packaging and labelling, automated test, automated parts handling, positioning stages and life sciences.

The new TSM Step-Servo series is a complete range of NEMA 17 and 23 sized integrated and compact packages combining microstepping motor + drive + encoder + controller. They are essentially an all-in-one economic solution with multi-function control capability that includes individual pulse or analogue control (for example from third party controllers), as well as a choice of built-in Modbus/RTU or CANopen multi-axis networking, or for pre-programmed stand-alone operation using AMP’s ‘Q’ motion software.

The TSM Step-Servo closed loop capability provides high accuracy position and velocity control for the most demanding applications with robust servo loops that tolerate wide fluctuation in load inertia and frictional loading. Highly precise positioning to within +/- one encoder count is achievable. Using a high resolution 20,000 counts/rev encoder, this equates to 0.018°.  Highly developed servo control algorithms ensure the drive stage uses only the current required by the application for maximum efficiency.

At stand-still, the current can reach almost zero for extremely low heat operation and because the TSM operates in full servo mode, all the available torque can be used to provide as much as 50% more torque in many applications, often eliminating the need for gear reduction. A torque boost function is also available to deliver as much as 50% more torque for fast dynamic response – perfect for short and quick moves.

Open-loop motion control

Now available from Heason Technology, Kollmorgen’s recently announced PMX series hybrid stepper motors provide a competitively priced and comprehensive solution for uncomplicated open-loop motion control. With six NEMA frame sizes from 08 through 34, each with several stack-length options, the PMX can deliver holding torque from 2.8 Ncm to 11.4 Nm with maximum speeds to 3000 rpm. Numerous standard options include bipolar and unipolar windings, integral connectors, shaft flats & keyways, rear shafts, IP65 sealing and more.

Furthermore, Kollmorgen’s flexible manufacturing capability and Heason Technology’s design and build expertise combines for a wide choice of customisation options covering winding modifications, special shafts, electrical interfacing, feedback encoders, gearboxes as well as complete motion sub-assemblies based on the PMX stepper range.

Of particular interest to machine designers and builders will be the smaller sized stepper motor availability. NEMA sized 08, 11, & 14 hybrid stepper motors have been added to Kollmorgen’s range for the first time as standard products allowing high quality miniaturised motion solutions with the same high standard and precision that is synonymous with the Kollmorgen brand. The smallest motor, the PMX08, has a nominal square size of just over 20mm and length of only 30mm.

Industrial Ethernet

According to JVL, its QuickStep series of Stepper motors with integrated electronics represents a major step forward. All the necessary electronics in a stepper system are integrated in the motor itself.

The stepper motor, encoder and electronics have been specially developed by JVL so that together they form a closed unit in which the power driver and controller are mounted inside the motor in a closed section with protection up to IP67, and stainless steel shaft AISI303 as standard on all models.

There is a choice of between wireless Bluetooth, WLAN or Zigbee, or Industrial Ethernet Profinet, Ethernet/IP, EtherCAT, Powerlink, MODBUS TCP/IP, RS485 and PLC built-in are standard. Featuring particularly high microstepping resolution, four sizes are available.

Key Points

  • Integrated stepper motor range includes closed loop servo feedback, providing all-in-one economic solution with multi-function control capability
  • Hybrid stepper motors with standard options including bipolar and unipolar windings, integral connectors, shaft flats & keyways, rear shafts, IP65 sealing
  • Stepper motor, encoder and electronics have specially developed by JVL so that together they form a closed unit