New Products

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Ceramic bearings

The Boca Bearing Company has released a line of ceramic hybrid radial bearings with deep grooves, ceramic hybrid thrust bearings, ceramic hybrid EMQ bearings, and ceramic hybrid insert bearings. Ceramic hybrid bearings are suitable for use in specialty applications, such as those seeking higher RPM’s, a reduction in weight or a drop in energy requirements.

Ceramic hybrid ball bearings use ceramic balls and steel races. Ceramic balls weigh up to 40% less than steel balls, depending on size. This reduces centrifugal loading and skidding, so hybrid ceramic bearings can operate up to 50% faster than conventional bearings. This means that the outer race groove exerts less force inward against the ball as the bearing spins. This cuts down friction and rolling resistance. The lighter ball allows the bearing to spin faster, and uses less energy to maintain its speed. Ceramic silicon nitride balls exhibit greater hardness than steel balls resulting in at least ten times greater ball life due to the ability to hold the surface finish longer. The ball has smoother surface properties than the best steel ball, which means less friction. Improved thermal properties lead to less heat buildup at high speeds. Compared with steel, ceramic has 35% less thermal expansion, 50% less thermal conductivity, is lighter weight and non-corrosive.

The inner and outer races of antifriction bearings often become frosted, fluted, or can be imprinted with a corrugated pattern. These are not mechanical scars but are due to electromagnetic forces and can lead to bearing failure. These problems are usually found in modern systems that routinely feature pulse-modulated adjustable-speed motors and inverters with high switching frequencies and short rise times.

By substituting ceramic hybrid bearings for their chrome steel counterparts, it is possible to eliminate pitting and scarring, and run cooler due to less micro-weld adhesion. Suitable applications for ceramic hybrid or full ceramic bearings include cryopumps, medical devices, semiconductors, machine tools, turbine flow meters, food processing equipment, robotics and optics.

Ultrasonic flow system

Siemens new digitally based Sitrans FS230 clamp-on ultrasonic flow system is a combination of the Sitrans FST030 transmitter and Sitrans FSS200 clampon sensors. It is suitable for industries requiring high-quality liquid flow measurement. It includes a Digital Sensor Link that digitizes the signal at the earliest stage of measurement, resulting in an optimal signal- to-noise ratio. Due to its 100 Hz data update rate and integrated Performance- PLUS algorithm, the transmitter detects tiny changes in flow. It also offers diagnostics that detect changes in aeration, signal quality, sonic speed, temperature and fluid type.

Electric drive controls

Toshiba Mitsubishi-Electric Industrial Systems Corporation (TMEIC) has introduced an electronic control board set for its family of variable frequency drives (VFDs). The control board set is designed for faster processing speed and data communications using floating point calculations. It responds to industrial communication protocols such as ProfiNet, Modbus RTU, CC-Link, EGD, and TCnet-IO, as well as supporting Ethernet 100Base-T for high-speed communication. A support tool known as TMdrive-Navigator gives extended data monitoring and reduces troubleshooting time. All TMEIC drive families are available with TMEIC’s remote connectivity module (RCM.) RCM allows operators to remotely connect to the drive and monitor its performance. Common applications for drives include supplying power to variable speed motors driving pumps, compressors, fans, extruder, mixers, and crushers used in oil and gas, water/waste-water, mining, power generation, paper, cement, and petrochemicals.

The Voith VECO-Drive steps up input speed and generates a high output speed for compressors or pumps. Since additional power is supplied to the drive train, a smaller main motor can be used for this variable speed drive

Variable speed drive

The Voith VECO-Drive is the first member of a new product family in the field of speed control for compressors and pumps. It is an electric superimposing gear and is inspired by the established principle of the Voith Vorecon with more than 600 installations. The VECO-Drive combines a mechanical planetary gear with frequency-controlled servo motors. The electrical superimposing gear is an efficient way to make speed variable. Servo motors are used to drive a planetary gear. Since they only need a small part of rated power, an overall component efficiency of more than 97% is reached. This saves energy and reduces operating expenditures. Servo motors are installed between a constant speed motor and a variable speed compressor or pump. This combines the reliability of mechanical gears with the productivity of low-voltage variable frequency drives (VFDs). Since additional power is supplied to the drive train, a smaller main motor can be used. This saves capital expenditures. The servo motor can be used as a starter to protect the electric grid from high inrush currents.

A prototype system was built and tested in Crailsheim, Germany. It was designed for compressor and pump ap-plications with a maximum output speed of 15,000 rpm, maximum output power of 15 MW and a speed adjustment range from 50% to 100%. The VECO-Drive has about 2% higher efficiency compared to a typical full-scale medium voltage VFD train with a step-up gearbox over the whole speed range. This equates to an annual energy reduction of more than 2,000 MWh. It is a modular system with individual specifications for different application types, classes of explosion protection and speed levels. Functions like the integrated PLC-based output controller, user interfaces, condition monitoring and simplified maintenance are part of the scope of supply, whereas remote access and remote diagnosis are available on demand.


Centrifugal disk finishing

Previously, the removal of burs and sharp edges on thin, relatively small parts required the use of centrifugal disk machines with special spinners made from ceramic or tungsten carbide steel. To prevent thin parts getting caught in the gap between the rotating spinner and stationary work bowl, the precise setting of the gap was crucial. Since even minor damage to the spinner could result in high repair costs, Walther Trowal developed the Turbotron gap rinsing system to eliminate spinner damage and adjust gap size. The pressure created by the rinsing system ensures that thin parts can no longer be drawn into the gap between spinner and wear ring. These machines operate with a high water level in the work bowl. This helps prevent the work pieces from sticking to each other

Smart lubrication

Trico has introduced Sensei, a real-time lubrication intelligence system. It wirelessly transmits oil level and ambient air temperature to a web-based dashboard. Users gain real-time input on machine status and maintenance requirements. This can reduce inspection time, eliminate the need to visit difficult- or dangerous-to-access areas, avoid downtime by providing alerts and warnings, and facilitate proactive maintenance.

The first wireless sensors available as part of the Sensei system are oil level sensors designed to accompany Trico’s line of 8-oz. Opto-Matic vented and closed constant level oilers. Pumps, motors, gearboxes, fans, blowers and other equipment use constant level oilers to maintain a consistent fluid level. Industrial and manufacturing applications include those in machining, petrochemicals, chemical processing, primary metals, pulp and paper and power generation. The Sensei system includes three components an oil sensor, a router that securely receives data and transmits it to the cloud, a customizable dashboard display.

Industrial IoT platform

ITT’s PRO Services brand unveiled the i- ALERT Ai platform, a web interface allowing customers to take advantage of the Industrial Internet of Things (IoT) to monitor all their i-ALERT2 enabled rotating equipment in one place. The simple online platform followed on from the i-ALERT2 Bluetooth Smart-enabled machine health monitor. Together, they enable users to spend less time collecting data from rotating equipment. This subscription service requires no software to download or dedicated hardware to run. It offers trend data, machine notes, technical data and vibration spectrum data collected via the i-ALERT2 app) visualized on a timeline. The company’s IoT sensor is compact (57mm L x 39mm W x 26mm H / 2.23in L x 1.53in W x 1.02in H). ITT’s i-ALERT2 monitor combines the latest in Bluetooth low-energy and sensor technologies.

Real-time material rendering

Kisters North America has released version 2017 of its 3DViewStation Desktop, a 3D CAD viewer. Its updates include a real-time materials rendering function, high performance viewing, advanced analysis and integration capabilities. It ships with a broad range of importers for 3D and 2D formats.

3D printing

Businesses are becoming increasingly aware of the opportunities that additive manufacturing (AM) offers. The global AM market (also known as 3D printing) has seen annual growth rates of 20 to 30 percent since 2010. According to a study by international management consultancy firm Bain & Company, this trend will accelerate in the years to come. SLM Solutions offers a range of 3D printers featuring industrial-class Selective Laser Melting (SLM) technology. It has a proven track record in in industries such as aviation & aerospace in making components. These are used for prototypes, small series and individual series products. They offer customers excellent productivity, greater flexibility and the opportunity to reduce lead time markedly.