Apr 13, 2018
How LISCO makes its high-precision axes even safer with the help of ACE
With an outer diameter of 17 mm, a stroke of 7 mm and a weight of just 40 g, TUBUS TA17-7 profile dampers are truly no heavyweights among the damping solutions provided by ACE Stoßdämpfer GmbH. That is precisely why LISCO values it as a versatile, easy-to-install component for the effective protection of high-quality linear axis systems made in Germany.
Young, dynamic and flexible are the attributes used on the company homepage to describe LISCO, located in Bargteheide on the outskirts of Hamburg. There are some parallels between LISCO and the modern construction components offered in the ACE TUBUS-series. Both first entered the market in this millennium and have since then developed into genuine success stories independently of each other. As a medium-sized company, the enterprise from the north of Germany has the flexibility and capacities in all areas to react quickly and unconventionally to the requirements and special requests of their clients. Specializing in the production of linear axes with various options for guidance systems and drives, LISCO develops standard and customized linear axes as well as complete linear systems. If required, these are also supplied with customer specific drives, controls and measurement protocols. This is made possible by the fact that the company covers the areas of construction, machining, mechanical production and assembly. All linear axes are usually equipped with profile rails or roller guides to achieve high load capacities with low coefficients of friction, high rigidity values and high-quality running accuracies. At the same time a high durability can usually be achieved. With the goal of extending their range, the team led by founder and CEO Stefan de Bruyn went in search of "very efficient energy guzzlers", as Marcel Schlünz, operations manager at LISCO and, among other things, responsible for marketing, reports: "The task was to find a powerful construction element that was to ensure in various linear axes, in handling and delivery systems, that no uncontrolled impact of the masses in the end positions occurs in the event of a software error." A similar accident could theoretically also be the result of power failures, both of which would lead to costly repairs and downtime of the whole construction.
9 Nm per stroke and a compact design with high power consumption convinces LISCO
Since LISCO's linear axes are usually supplied with profile rails or roller guides, it made sense to choose a solution that could be easily attached to the left and right of each rail or guide. Compact design and easy installation were additional requirements. Theoretically, several solutions coming from the diverse portfolio of ACE Stoßdämpfer GmbH would have been suitable. LISCO finally decided to use TUBUS TA17-7 types because this solution from ACE is a perfect alternative, when masses don't need to be decelerated to an exact point in an emergency.
For this purpose and a range of other applications the profile dampers made of co-polyester elastomer are a cost-effective alternative to hydraulic solutions. "This feature is very important to many of our customers. Because the simplified design of the profile dampers saves money on the overall construction without compromising their safety," says Thorsten Kohnen, product manager for profile dampers at ACE. "In addition, the users praise the elimination of costly repairs and the associated higher availability," he summarizes the economic benefits of these machine elements.
From a technical point of view, the TA series offers high energy absorption at the beginning of the stroke due to its degressive damping characteristic. Despite the compact design and the low weight of 40 g, the dampers are reliable at temperatures between -40 °C and 90 °C and offer energy capacities of up to 9 Nm per stroke in emergencies. Used in end positions of a construction under regular circumstances, their energy capacity is 6 Nm per stroke. In this case, their long service life of up to 1 million load changes is fully realized and a clear advantage in comparison to alternative solutions. They last up to 20 times longer than damping with solutions made of urethane, up to 10 times longer than rubber dampers and up to five times longer than steel springs.
As far as power consumption is concerned, these axially damping elements are far from having reached the end of their performance. The TA family was specially developed for maximum energy consumption with a minimum height in a range of 2 Nm to 2,951 Nm. However, at the upper end of the scale, they are not attached at all to comparatively small applications such as the one described in this case, but to large machines, conveyors or even crane applications. The mounting principle is the same in all cases: They can easily and quickly be fastened with a provided screw. This also applies to the models that have special strokes, characteristics, spring rates, sizes and materials available on request.
TUBUS profile dampers by ACE: Little helpers, great possibilities
In addition to the TA family presented in this case, the product series of the TUBUS profile dampers from ACE comprises seven further product families. In total, nearly 150 individual types of profile dampers are available for the most diverse applications. With their help, engineers can generate degressive, progressive or approximately linear characteristics. The profile dampers are also an ideal alternative to hydraulic miniature or industrial shock absorbers when masses don't need to be decelerated to an exact point. In addition to their long service life of up to 1 million load changes, the TUBUS range stands out from other solid-damping elements due to their space-saving design and low weight.
Whether used as a stop damper in handling and robot systems or as a stroke limiter in forklift trucks, in fitness equipment or in general mechanical and plant engineering, users also usually benefit from noise reduction compared to similar solutions. For crane plant construction, ACE has developed special high-performance crane dampers, which have ideal characteristics with high restoring forces at absorbed energies of 450 Nm to 17,810 Nm per stroke for emergency stop applications. In addition to the standard products of the various TUBUS families mentioned in this article, ACE also offers a large number of special designs for customer-specific use upon request.