At Hannover Messe in 2017, Schunk’s Co-act (collaborative actuator) JL1 Gripper received the coveted Hermes technology award. Billed as the world’s first intelligent gripping module for human/robot collaboration (HRC) by directly interacting and communicating with humans, the modular gripping system was deemed a vital part of the smart factory tool kit.
At 2020 ATX West in Anaheim, Calif., the German company introduced a Co-act model for manufacturers that want to implement a cobot. Designed for Universal Robots products, the EGH 80 is easily programmed to vary stroke up to 3.15 in (80 m
m). Such flexibility makes the gripper particularly well-suited for small-to-medium-sized parts in the handling, assembly, and electronics industries.
The gripper handles parts up to 1.1 lb (0.5 kg) or 6.6 lb (3 kg) with “captured” grip.
The two fingers move in parallel to ensure constant force up to 100 newtons over the entire stroke and eliminate the need for compliance in the Z direction. An LED light ring glows green to confirm a command has been executed and yellow or red to indicate a malfunction. A quick-release mechanism ensures fast tool changeover. Control via IO-Link enables finger prepositioning and evaluation of the gripper condition.
As demonstrated in this video by Noah Weiss, applications engineer for Cross Co., a Universal Robots and Schunk distributor in Belmont, N.C., a starter kit contains all the components to mount the gripper within 30 minutes:
- USB flash drive with UR Cap plugin
- Turck ethernet I/O module
- Three 3 styles of rubber and rigid plastic gripper pads
- Three Allen keys
- ISO 9409-1-50-4-M6 mounting flange
- IO-Link master with connection cable
- Basic cable management
In addition to getting up and running within 20 minutes, Weiss had the EGH pick up a part twice as heavy as Schunk recommends.
The EGH is designed for Universal Robots cobots, but Schunk is going to release versions for other cobot manufacturers.
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