Compared to many six-strut hexapod configurations, this five-strut design increases the ratio of working space to build volume while providing more residual stiffness at high swivel angles.
In addition to its 5-axis machining capability, this pentapod design can also swivel through ninety degrees. The machine controller, however, accepts conventional co-ordinate information supplied by a normal numerical control program. Bosch Rexroth MHS 40 direct drives with hollow-shaft motors raise and lower the spindles. Compared to toothed-belt systems, the direct drive gives a stiffer design with fewer parts, increasing reliability. As there is no belt, no retensioning is required. Machining applications for the pentapod include models for prototypes and forms for castings.
Michael Schwaar, METROM Mechatronische Maschinen GmbH, Chemnitz, Germany; Tel: +49 371 5347 600; Fax: +49 371 5347 601; email@example.com. For more information, circle 509
Submit your ideas and rough drawings for this section to John Lewis, Designer's Corner, Design News, 275 Washington St., Newton, MA 02458
Applied Research Associates has delivered several of its Pointman Tactical Robots to the CBP in Tucson, which the agency is using to explore drainage tunnels that run between Nogales, Ariz., and Nogales, Mexico. These tunnels are out of sight from border surveillance and are increasingly being used for illegal activity.