SMW Autoblok (Wheeling, IL) launched its new division, SMW-Electronics in June. Headquartered in Meckenbeuren, Germany, SMW-Electronics’ focus will be on developing innovative products to automate and digitize manufacturing processes to fully utilize Industry 4.0 standards.
SMW-Electronics leverages core technologies including inductive energy and data transmission, sensors, software, and mechatronics, to meet the exacting requirements for new markets in industries such as factory automation and material handling, packaging, robotics, and electronics manufacturing.
Examples of new products already developed by SMW-Electronics include:
▪ Non-contact couplers for the transmission of energy and data
▪ Sensors and measuring systems
▪ Electro-mechanical clamping systems
▪ Customized solutions
“Incorporating Industry 4.0 features into our new electronic products is a huge advantage to our customers. Not only does it increase productivity through automation and process optimization, but it also increases profitability through added production speed,” said Peter Helm, export and marketing manager for SMW Autoblok GmbH. “In addition to standard products, we are also able to fully customize our products to meet customer requirements and specifications for smart manufacturing facilities.”
Its flagship product line features non-contact inductive coupler systems that transfer energy (up to 1800 W) and data between stationary and moving components over an air gap of 4 mm. Inductive couplers reduce the sources of error for loss of communication through the entire production process and are ideal for applications including rotary tables, machining centers, assembly automation, and pallet systems, to name a few. Completely maintenance-free and IP67 rated for harsh, demanding environments, couplers replace cables, contacts, or slip rings and are commonly used in sensor technology. Radial couplers for rotary applications are also offered and are available in diameters up to 280 mm with large internal diameters.
Sensors and Measuring Systems
One of SMW-Electronics’ exciting new products is the inductive LPS 4.0 position sensor that identifies the exact position of a sensor element wirelessly and with maximum repeat accuracy. The measured value is available via the built-in IO-Link interface or displayed by way of traditional analogue signals (0-10V or 4-20mA). The LPS 4.0 is also protected to IP67 and offers outstanding EMC properties.
For maximizing chuck performance, it is critical to stabilize the machining process, maintaining high repeatability, part quality and safety. To help improve and monitor chuck performance, GFT-X 4.0 Grip Force meter and 7-inch tablet is intuitive and easy to use. The GFT-X-4.0 not only measures the exact gripping force and speed on jaw chucks and collet chucks in static or dynamic mode, but is also an industry tablet with a built-in camera and custom apps to guide the user. The tablet is IP67 rated and has a long battery life, making it ideal for industrial use. The GFT-X 4.0 comes with a variety of measuring heads for jaw chucks, vises, and collet chucks. When measuring dynamic gripping forces, the data is transferred from the measuring head to the tablet via bluetooth.
SMW-Electronic’s e-motion product line has been developed for digital production and offers a complete range of couplers and software to work with a range of down line systems to handle part holding, workholding actuation components, systems controls, actuators, and robotics. All e-motion products are based on the same concept of a contact-free inductive coupler system for signal and power transmission.
For industrial applications, the T drive e-motion, as an electro-mechanical actuating unit, is also used to actuate standard chucks. As a further evolution, chucks with a direct electro-mechanical jaw drive have been introduced.
The closed center 4-jaw chuck MM e-motion for mill turn centers has one independent fully controlled and monitored electro-mechanical drive per jaw. This allows for completely new clamping functions like self-centering, compensation, or individual jaw movement within one chuck. The fully programmable 4-jaw chuck also features automatic center adjustment for any workpiece shape or configuration.
With the addition of SMW-Electronics, the new portfolio supports both new and existing customers by providing solutions to digitize products and achieve greater productivity and flexibility in a variety of manufacturing operations.
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