The OscillatorTM is a new roller bearing designed to increase bearing life by eliminating fretting (false brinelling) under oscillatory motions. It features a double row bearing configuration which causes the roller set to move circumferentially during oscillating motion. This design also resists corrosion by continuously redistributing grease, assures minimal clearance/freeplay, and maintains positional accuracy.
Rexnord Corp., 5116 Forest Ave., Downers Grove, IL 60515
The Dual Durometer Hinge features a co-extrusion comprising two rigid PVC leaves connected by a strong, flexible polyurethane elastomer. It is designed for mounting applications, and can be provided with double-sided tape or punched with mounting holes for fasteners. The leaves can also be extruded in custom shapes.
Richco, 5825 N. Tripp Ave, Chicago, IL 60646; FAX (773) 539-6770; www.richco-inc.com.
The JITO-2 (Just in Time Oscillator®) is a reduced phase jitter oscillator that makes microprocessor-based systems less prone to errors, and can increase the reliability of any data-sensitive application. It can offer a 67% reduction in phase jitter over the competition, and -- in some frequency ranges -- compares favorably with fixed-frequency oscillators, the manufacturer claims.
Fox Electronics, 5570 Enterprise Parkway, Fort Myers, FL 33905; FAX (941) 693-1554.
The FlashLineTM Model FL-3000 Thermal Diffusivity System characterizes coarse-grain materials, such as refractories, carbons, or rocks, certain composites, metals, ceramics, liquids, and pastes. It can accommodate testing at 500, 1,000, and 1,400C, with a high-speed Xenon discharge (HSXD) pulse source, as well as multiple sample handling, and specific heat capacity and thermal conductivity determinations.
Anter Corp., 1700 Universal Rd., Pittsburgh, PA 15235-3998; FAX (412) 795-8225; www.anter.com.
ANSYS® 5.6 is the latest version of this CAE software, with emphasis in engineering simulation of nonlinear structural mechanics and coupled-field multiphysics for microelectromechanical systems (MEMS). One example: this "earthquake-proof water tower" in California.
ANSYS Inc., Southpointe 275 Technology Dr., Canonsburg, PA 15317; www.ansys.com.
The PurgeX Grease Injector Pump uses a motor driven single-piece piston which dispenses a precise amount of grease with each cycle. It is designed for heavy duty mining machinery, steel mills, turbines, cables, die cast molds, packaging machinery, and conveyors. Grease flows from a reservoir to the injector pump, powered by an electric switch or computer.
Oil-Rite Corp., Box 1207, Manitowoc, WI 54221; FAX (920) 682-7699.
Premium, efficient, Super-E® motors 15 hp and above now meet the requirements of NEMA MG1, Part 31, for peak voltage when used with inverters. Featuring improved insulation materials, the motors can successfully operate with inputs up to 1,600V peak. A special Inverter Spike Resistant®(ISR) wire also helps the motors withstand the up to 100 times higher voltage spikes sometimes caused by inverters. Each motor is now labeled, "Inverter Ready," eliminating the guesswork over inverter compatibility.
Baldor, Box 2400, Fort Smith, AK 72902; FAX (501) 648-5792; www.baldor.com.
The FSP spectrum analyzer family consists of the FSP-3 (9 kHz to 3 GHz) and the FSP-7 (9 kHz to 7 GHz). The analyzers support TDMA, CDMA, and W-CDMA standards. Features include dedicated ASIC-based hardware for adjacent channel power ratio (ACPR) measurements; functions, such as bypassing routine display updates, to deliver measurements (sustained at up to 30 measurements per second) more quickly; and a total amplitude level uncertainty of 0.5 dB from 9 kHz to 3 GHz over a 70 dB dynamic range. Applications include production test of high volume wireless handsets and base stations.
Tektronix, Box 3960, Portland, OR 97208-3960; FAX (503) 222-1542.; www.tektronix.com.
The PCM1744 is a digital-to-analog converter offering 24-bit, 96-kHz performance and is priced from $1.95 in 1,000-piece quantities. The device features an on-board 82 digital interpolation filter with optional digital de-emphasis at 44.1 kHz. Operating from a 5V power supply, the PCM1744 has 95 dB dynamic audio range and -84 dB total harmonic distortion plus noise. The converter is pin-for-pin compatible with the company's existing 18- and 16-bit devices. Applications include high volume, mass market consumer audio such as DVD/CD, set-top boxes, HDTV, and MP-3 players.
Burr-Brown, Box 11400, Tucson, AZ 85734; FAX (520) 746-7401; www.burr-brown.com.
Hermetically sealed switch
The 6600 Series switch is designed for harsh environments and extended life. A nickel-bellows actuator inside the switch gives a lifetime of 500,000 cycles, which the company says is a factor of 20 improvement. Hermetic sealing is to MIL-S-8805. The corrosion resistant housing withstands most media and allows exposure to synthetic hydraulic oils and jet fuels. The switch operates below 5 mA at 28V dc in temperatures from -65 to 400F.
Haydon Switch & Instrument, 1500 Meriden Rd., Waterbury, CT 06705; FAX (503) 222-1542.; www.hsi-inc.com.
Custom wire, cable assemblies
Custom wire and cable assemblies, with or without termination connectors, are available for Pittman's LO-COG® brush-commutated dc motors and gearmotors, ELCOM® brushless motors and gearmotors, and ELCOM® II brushless motors and gearmotors. The assemblies can also be provided for most optical encoders. In-house tooling capabilities support many connector styles and wire types in low to high volume order quantities.
Pittman, 343 Godshall Dr., Harleysville, PA 19438; FAX (215) 256-1388; www.pittmannet.com.
High-torque step motor
The UMK Sizes 34 (3.35 sq inches) is a high torque, 2-phase step motor and driver package. Holding torque can reach up to 430 ounce-inches for the 2.60-inch-long version; 861 ounce-inches for the 3.78-inch-long version, and 1,291 ounce-inches for the 4.96-inch-long version. These high torque step motor and drive packages can be supplied as either flying lead or terminal box type for connecting the motor and driver to the input power source. The driver includes a patented method of driving the step motor, producing microstep-type performance with a full step/half step driver, eliminating the need for a high-speed pulse generator.
Oriental Motor, 2510 W 237th St., Torrance, CA 90505; FAX (310) 325-4146; www.orientalmotor.com.
Thread repair inserts
These new internal locking thread repair inserts feature an anti-vibration quality. The insertion of a fastener into the insert expands a swaged slot, locking the fastener in. And the inserts have locking keys to hold them in position in the parent material. Construction is in 303 stainless steel or equivalent, and applications include the rapid repair of stripped threads in many materials.
Jergens Inc., Jergens Way 15700 South Waterloo Road, Cleveland, OH 44110; FAX (216) 481-6193; www.jergensinc.com.
Polytop Rivets are blind rivets with molded, self-masking polymer heads, developed for joining pre-finished, painted, and plastic-coated sheet metals. They avoid the need for extra finishing and offer a cost-effective alternative to enamel-coated or capped rivets. They are based on standard 3/16-inch (4.8 mm) diameter aluminum rivets, in lengths of 10 to 25 mm.
USM Industrial Fasteners, 400 Research Dr., Wilmington, MA 01887; FAX 978-988-8820.
Motion control kit
DeviceNetTM Compliant MVP® motion control modules are now available in kit form, including integrated linear or PWM amplifier, power supply, cabling, and gearmotor/encoder or motor/encoder of a user's choice. Kit includes a Visual BASIC demo software package that supports all standard features of the controller. Pricing starts at $700. An optional MACRO programming module is available that allows complete motion routines to be downloaded for free-standing operation.
MicroMo Electronics, 14881 Evergreen Ave., Clearwater, FL 33762-3008; FAX 727 573 5918; www.micromo.com.
Fastening, Joining & Assembly
Benjamin B. Ames, Associate Editor
For comments on fastening, joining & assembly contact Ben at email@example.com
Pick of the Issue
Impact-resistant adhesive transparency
Two new Rilsan® grades offer impact- and tear-resistant adhesive transparency, developed for the ski market. Rilsan MB3751 is a modified polyamide 11 that is UV-stable and can withstand temperatures down to -40C. Rilsan MA4670 is a modified polyamide 12 with adhesive properties matched to epoxy, aluminum, and other ski manufacturing substrates. Both can be used on their own or compounded, and both support decorative effects such as depth and printing by sublimation.
Elf Atochem, 2000 Market St., Philadelphia, PA 19103-3222; www.elf-atochem.com.
PEM® type SMPSTM stainless steel, self-clinching nuts are designed for fastening applications where there is minimal room for hardware to attach extremely thin steel sheets. They have lower diameter and height than standard clinch nuts, and can be attached 50% closer to the sheet, the manufacturer says. They can be attached to sheets as thin as 0.63 mm, and are made of 300 series stainless steel, available in unified or metric thread sizes.
Penn Engineering, 5190 Old Easton Rd., Danboro, PA 18916-1000; FAX (215) 766-0143; www.pemnet.com.
In-vitro diagnostic tapes
Two new in-vitro diagnostic tapes are designed for blood glucose and other devices. ARcare® 8876 is made with MA-61, a non-migratory, inert acrylic adhesive, and is a clear, single-faced, 5mm, printable polyester film that is coated on one side with medical-grade PSA. ARcare® 8868 is made with MA-38, an inert acrylic adhesive, and is a 3.2-mm-thick matte polyester film coated on both sides with medical-grade PSA and polyester release liner.
Adhesives Research Inc., Box 100, Glen Rock, PA 17327; FAX (717) 235-8320.
EMI shielding gasket
This shape-retaining EMI shielding gasket has a relatively rigid shape-retaining insert embedded in the conductive elastomer. Both the insert and surrounding material can be filled with a variety of conductive fillers, depending on shielding effectiveness, galvanic compatibility, cost, and environmental concerns.
Tecknit, 129 Dermody St., Cranford, NJ 7016; FAX (908) 272-2741; http://tecknit.com.
The new SCN45 coil nailer is designed for easy-loading, high-capacity jobs such as sheathing, subfloors, decking, fencing, and furniture frame construction. It weighs 4.4 lb, with a 375-nail, swing-out magazine that accommodates either smooth- or ring-shank nails, in lengths from one to two inches. It also offers an adjustable depth-of-drive setting, and exhaust deflector.
Senco Products, Inc., 8485 Broadwell Rd., Cincinnati, OH 45244
Electronics clip system
The Quick Draw Clip System is a closure for connecting an electronic item such as a cell phone, camera, or hand-held computer to a support body, such as a vehicle dashboard, table, clipboard, or a person's belt, shirt, or strap.
Quick Draw Clip Systems Inc., 4869 McGrath St., Ste. 130, Ventura, CA 93003; FAX (805) 644-7320; www.clipsystems.com.
These spring-loaded plungers feature a choice of front-end or back-end installation, designed for applications in the electronic, aerospace-defense, medical, automotive and marine industries. The standard item, Posi Hex®, can be easily installed and removed from the back with a hex wrench. It is made from both steel and stainless steel alloy, and has an integral hex socket for protection against rust and corrosion.
Vlier, 40 Guest St., Brighton, MA 02135-9105; FAX (617) 783-2436.
The Model 8330 Label Placer is a high-speed, flexible system than can apply a wide range of labels at speeds up to 9,000 labels/hour. It can be used as an off-line or online process, and is available in single- or dual-lane configurations.
Crown Simplimatic, Box 11709, Lynchburg, VA 24506; FAX (804) 385-7813.
The new, SolderPlus RA31 series solder pastes are formulated for use with hard-to-wet metals like nickel and zinc, and provide more aggressive fluxing action than standard RA compositions, the manufacturer says. They are available in all standard alloys, and are reflowed with traditional heating techniques. They are packaged in 35, 75, and 150 gram syringes.
EFD Inc., 14 Blackstone Valley Place, Lincoln, RI 02865; FAX (401) 333-4954.
Programmable bonding dispenser
The microprocessor-based 2000XL-PR5 provides fluid control in dispensing solvents and cyanoacrylates, for applications in securing marker bands to heart catheters, attaching balloons to angioplasty catheters, and bonding medical grade tubing. Its electric foot pedal controls and digital readouts allow consistent microdeposits as small as 0.008 inch.
EFD, 977 Waterman Ave., East Providence, RI 02914; FAX (401) 431-0237.
Laurie Ann Toupin Associate Editor
For comments on computer productivity tools, contact Laurie at firstname.lastname@example.org
Pick of the Issue
PC-in-the-LoopTM enables control and DSP engineers to perform rapid prototyping and system-level testing of real-time embedded systems on a PC before target hardware is available. Suited to embedded systems design in industries such as aerospace, automotive, communications, and industrial automation, PC-in-the-Loop allows software development and testing to continue in parallel to hardware design. The new package combines the design and analysis environment of MATLAB® with the modeling and simulation capabilities of Simulink and the automatic code generation of Real-Time Workshop. xPC Target lets engineers dedicate a second connected PC as a hardware-in-the-loop rapid prototyping target by connecting the development environment via RS232 or Ethernet connection.
Mathworks, 24 Prime Parkway, Natick, MA 01760-1520; FAX (508) 647-7101; www.mathworks.com.
EdgeCAM Solid Machinist Version 1.0 bridges the CAD to CAM barrier, allowing users to associatively machine Parasolid design models inside EdgeCAM. Solid Machinist, the newest addition to the Pathtrace modular off-line programming system, accepts solid model design directly from any leading Parasolid-based CAD package, overcoming problems with translators stripping out intelligence such as topology feature data and dimensional information.
Pathtrace Systems, Inc., 2143 Convention Center Way, Ontario, CA 91764; FAX 909-937-1229; www.pathtrace.com.
Molding advice software
Plastics AdviserTM 4.0, comprises two software products, Moldflow Part AdviserTM and Moldflow Mold AdviserTM, offers the following enhancements: automatic gate locator, process condition optimization, quality plot, and automatic runner balancing. Other features include: the extension of the dynamic adviser capabilities, so that users can probe the model directly and receive real time feedback on results and suggested design/process improvements; multi-document and multi-window interface options; advanced runner import options that allow users to import previously modeled feed system geometry so they do not have to reconstruct feed systems when the make modifications to their CAD model or use similar layouts for different parts; new gate geometry option for "banana" style gates; and a spread-sheet-based cost estimator.
Moldflow, 91 Hartwell Ave., Lexington, MA 02173; FAX (781) 674-0267.
Mathcad® 2000 Premium, the newest member of the Mathcad family of mathematics-based solutions, offers an enhanced mathematical engine that includes extensions to support optimization, quadratic programming, higher capacity program solving, reference materials and Web resources. It offers users improved visualization and analysis capabilities with more than 90 2D and 3D plot types and built-in analysis tools. 2000 Premium also includes a full edition of SmartSketch® 3.0, the latest 2D parametric drawing and design tools from Intergraph Corporation. Smartsketch features 8,000 pre-drawn symbols and 46 discipline-specific templates to create technology drawings that are driven from Mathcad specifications. The software runs on Windows 95, 98, and NT.
MathSoft, Inc., 101 Main St., Cambridge, MA 02142; FAX (617) 577-8829; www.mathsoft.com.
Sheet metal software
FabDesignTM, a framework and comprehensive suite of tools for creating sheet metal parts, helps users design and document chassis, brackets, housings, and other fabricated sheet metal components. Designers create feature-based solid models of parts in the context of a full 3D assembly. Users can fold and unfold an entire part or individual bends at will and add features to parts in the folded or unfolded state. Manufacturability is ensured through automatic creation of bend allowances and reliefs. FabDesign leverages all the benefits of VX Vision's CAD/CAM software, including interference checking and configuration management. VX Vision's drafting has been extended to include automatic documentation of flat-pattern sheet metal layouts. An important feature of the new software is its ability to work with sheet metal parts imported from other systems.
Varimetrix Corp., 2350 Commerce Park Dr. Ste. #4, Palm Bay, FL 32905; FAX (407) 723-4388; www.vx.com.
Mango Math-Link EDS enables DSP engineers in industries such as communications, aerospace, and defense to target algorithms developed in the MATLAB language directly to embedded Texas Instruments and Analog Devices DSP multiprocessor configurations without conversion to C code. The company claims this will eliminate the time-consuming task of hand coding. The development system consists of a standard PC with MATLAB, the Mango Computer compiler and run time executive, and one or more of Mango's multiprocessing DSP boards. This will allows users to rapid prototype and deploy multiprocessor DSP applications including real-time I/O data manipulations without having to develop and hand code C or C++ programs.
The MathWorks Inc., 24 Prime Park Way, Natick, MA 01760; FAX (508) 647-7001; www.mathworks.com.
The TinyBGA DRAM module offers a 50% reduction in package size while doubling the memory capacity. With the TinyBGA (Ball Grid Array), the DRAM module pins fit onto motherboards in compliance with industry standards. A proprietary low-profile, high-density chip scale package architecture creates up to a 50% reduction in the module's physical size compared to conventional thin small outline package assembly. The TinyBGA is less than 0.06 inches in height. The module can expand memory for desktop applications such as graphic design and add greater capability to portables. It can also used for embedded systems such as cell phones and cameras.
Kingmax Micro Technology, 3-B Goodyear, Irvine, CA 92618; FAX (949) 454-9499; www.kingmax.com.
DFM (design for manufacturing) Concurrent Costing Version 1.1 isolates the major cost drivers associated with a wide range of processes for part manufacturing and finishing. Used as an analysis tool during part design, Concurrent Costing guides product engineers as they investigate alternative materials and processes for producing parts and helps them select the most cost-efficient design. Engineers can now import solid models in order to obtain exact 3D part geometry data for cost estimating. Users can open and view solid models of parts created in all the major CAD/CAM software systems while information such as part dimensions, weight, and volume automatically updates the costing program.
Boothroyd Dewhurst, Inc., 138 Main Street, Wakefield, RI 02879; FAX (401) 783-6872.
CAD/CAM software for CNC
VX Vision CAM Manager, now available with the VX Vision Manufacturing package, offers an integrated solution for 2 1/2- and 3-axis milling, hole drilling, and verification. CAM Manager is another function of VX Vision, a mid-priced CAD/CAM system offering software for design through manufacturing. Integrated manufacturing ensures 100% synchronization with design because both design and manufacturing engineers share the same data base. This also ensures that data is not lost through export and import functions. Attribute information such as tolerances, finish quality, and material characteristics will now be automatically available to manufacturing processes. The whole package includes hybrid modeling, mold making, and manufacturing applications such as CNC code generation and tool path verification.
Varimetrix Corp., 2350 Commerce Park Dr. Ste. #4, Palm Bay, FL 32905; FAX (407) 723-4388; www.vx.com.
ICP-MULTI, a high-density, multifunction I/O board for 3U CompactPCI, includes 16 single-ended or eight differential 12-bit analog inputs, four 12-bit analog outputs, 16 digital inputs, and eight digital outputs. For additional flexibility, four of the digital inputs can be configured for 16-bit up counter tasks. All digital inputs provide full PLC compatibility and feature over-voltage and reverse polarity protection. The board also provides full plug-&-play and hot swap compatibility for industrial monitoring and control applications including embedded systems and robotics.
Inova Computers, 5 Main St., Cotuit, MA 02635; FAX (508) 428-7347; www.inova-computers.com.
The Actius pc-A800, the latest model the Actius line of notebook computers, features a durable magnesium alloy case with a 13.3-inch XGA active matrix LDC display, a 366 MHz Mobile Pentium II processor, and a standard modular CD-ROM drive that can be swapped with a floppy drive. Measuring just over one inch thick and weighing only 4.7 lbs, marks Sharp's entry into the thin and light notebook category. The computer offers 64MB of SDRAM memory expandable to 192 MB, 8.1GB hard drive, and a 24-speed CD-ROM.
Sharp Electronics Corp., Sharp Plaza, Mahwah, NJ 07430; FAX (201) 529-8919; www.sharp-usa.com.
Reverse engineering software
HALODECK MasterTool, an integrated reverse engineering software, allows users of Mastercam, a machining software from CNC Software, Inc. to re-create complex 3D surfaces and solids from existing molds, models, or parts and visualize, analyze, and critique 3D product designs in real-time. The software delivers a Windows 95/98/NT 4.0 menu-based interface and access to several mid-level reverse engineering features including points, line, spline, closed line, and closed spline data collection options. Smart features include rectangle, circle, measurement, cutplane, and cutplane offset.
HighRES Inc., Bx. 2746, La Jolla, CA 92038; FAX (619) 459-5241; www.reverse-it.com.
Second-generation MT-RJ transceivers for gigabit Ethernet, fibre channel, and ATM OC-12 applications operate at speeds up to 1.25 Gb/s. The multimode transceivers use low-cost, short-wavelength vertical cavity surface-emitting lasers (VCSELs) and meet the requirements of IEEE #802.3. The transceivers have a reach of 550 meters over 50/125-micron fiber or 275 meters over 62.5/125-micron fiber without the use of mode-conditioning cables. The MT-RJ is a small-form-factor family of transceivers, connectors, and cable assemblies.
AMP, A Tyco International Ltd. Company, Box 3608, Harrisburg, PA 17105-3608; FAX (717) 986-7575; www.amp.com.
Rick DeMeis, Senior Editor
For comments on electrical/electronics, contact Rick at email@example.com
Pick of the Issue
Data acquisition system
The DAS 100 was designed so it costs less than $800, it can be operated by a non-technical user, and it requires a PC to program but not to operate. It is suitable for applications in industrial, commercial, and renewable energy, and features a menu-driven user-interface and Internet access. The system has 48 input channels, and stores up to 3,900 samples, with data downloadable by modem, direct serial connection, or removable memory modules. It holds up to six option cards that measure frequency, temperature, and ac and dc volts and current.
Fire, Wind and Rain Technologies LLC, 3920 E. Huntington Dr., Flagstaff, AZ 86004; FAX (502) 527-4664; www.firewindandrain.com.
The TC10GP is a single-core computing engine that provides real-time microcontroller (MCU) and DSP functionality, while using a single application development program and system design tool chain. It was designed for applications that had previously required separate MCU and DSP components, such as Internet appliances, high-performance disk drives, data communications, speech and fingerprint recognition systems.
Infineon Technologies Corp., 1730 N. First St., San Jose, CA 95112; www.infineon.com.
The Ashcroft® F-Series pressure switch is UL-listed for hazardous locations. It was designed for pressure alarm, shutdown and control, for use in engines and compressors, turbines, process and off-shore applications, panels, pipelines and more. It has a watertight, anodized aluminum body, a hermetically-sealed snap-acting switch element, and a diaphragm-sealed, piston actuator.
Dresser Industries - Instrument Div., 250 E. Main St., Stratford, CT 06497-5145
Chip cooling fan
The 2004KL is a chip cooling fan that delivers up to 11 CFM under static pressure of 0.15 inch H2O. It also features tach output, locked rotor alarm signal, and temp sensing, and small size: 50 2 50 2 10 mm. Its dual ball bearing design means the fan can be subjected to twice the amount of heat without wavering in reliability, and low noise level.
NMB Technologies, 9730 Independence Ave., Chatsworth, CA 91311; FAX 818 709-0387; www.nmbtech.com.
Breaker control relay
The SEL-251S protection and breaker control relay features directional overcurrent elements, advanced operator controls, reclosing control, monitoring, metering, fault locating, and system integration. It was designed for electric utilities and bulk power users, to replace older electromechanical overcurrent and reclosing relays, panel-mounted control switches, indicating lights, and metering devices.
Schweitzer Engineering Laboratories, 2350 NE Hopkins Court, Pullman, WA 99163-5603; FAX (509) 332-7990; www.selinc.com.
The INTERBUS interface controller board for the GE 90-70 series PLC has the latest Generation 4 features: pluggable flash memory card, remote monitoring and diagnostics, and complete electrical isolation between the bus connector and GE 90-70. The host controller board is connected to the PLC CPU via the standard P1 back plane connector, and appears "transparent" to the host system, so the field I/O data can be accessed via conventional GE 90-70 instructions.
Phoenix Contact, Box 4100, Harrisburg, PA 17111-0100; FAX (717) 944-1625.
The NMS series are low-profile, board-mount dc/dc converters that are certified to BS EN60950. They are designed for applications in electrically noisy environments and telecom applications. Input to output isolation is 6,000V dc. The converters supply 2W in an industry-standard 24-pin, single-wide DIP package, in the small size of 1.28 2 0.58 2 0.37 inch. The series includes 8 models with dual output voltages of 55, 9, 12, and 15V dc.
International Power Sources Inc., 260 Hopping Brook Rd., Holliston, MA 01746; FAX (508) 497-9403; www.intlpower.com.
The Titanium Fourte-RTTM is a four-port chipset that is designed to allow deployment of ADSL in digital loop carriers. The product meets the DSL power and space requirements, so manufacturers can design the lowest-power, highest-density DLC systems.
GlobeSpan Inc., 100 Schulz Dr., Red Bank, NJ 07701; www.globespan.net.
The VTP240 is a resettable fuse with the highest hold current of the VTP range (2.4A), for applications in overcurrent and overtemperature protection for products such as hand held wireless devices such as Internet-capable cell phones, large LCD screens, and PDAs. The device is a polymeric positive temperature coefficient (PPTC) fuse that functions as a low-resistance series element between the battery cells and pack circuits.
Raychem, Electronics OEM Components Div, 300 Constitution Dr, MS 110/7568, Menlo Park, CA 94025; FAX (650) 361-5579; www.raychem.com.
Charles J. Murray, Regional Technical Editor
For comments on fluid power, contact Charles at firstname.lastname@example.org
Pick of the Issue
This product addresses the hottest topic in pneumatics: load positioning. Traditionally, engineers have been hesitant to use pneumatic systems for accurate positioning of loads. The new System Plus Multi-Brake, however, addresses those concerns. It combines three products, a pneumatic rodless cylinder, a vee-shaped guide rail and a brake, into a single package. The system allows engineers to more accurately position products, hold them in place without the demand for alternative or secondary engineering, and do it safely without fear of pressure or power loss. The OSP rodless cylinder is a linear actuator. The guide rail, made of lightweight aluminum, provides smooth operation and increased load carrying and moment capacities (moments to 260 N-m/192 lb-ft and loads to 2,500 N/562 lbf).
HOERBIGER ORIGA, 100 W. Lake Dr., Glendale Heights, IL 60139; FAX (630) 871-1515.
Active suspension module
The Active Suspension Module is designed for energy absorption and stable motion in off-highway and automotive equipment applications. It includes a hydraulic cylinder, internal force and position feedback sensors, integral electronics and a high-speed valve. Electric power and the hydraulic pressure and tank are the only connections to this self-contained system. The unit stabilizes motion by converting shock energy into hydraulic pressure and dissipating it as heat. Variations in the load cause the hydraulic cylinder to follow a controlled position profile to absorb energy. Various control profiles and sensitivities can be configured.
Microhydraulics Inc., 1 Automatic Road, Brampton, ON, L6S 4K6 Canada; FAX 905-602-9279.
Axial piston pump
Three new axial piston pumps, the PVT38, PVT47, and PVT64, offer quiet operation. The pumps have displacements of 4.88, 6.10, and 7.93 cubic inches per revolution, respectively. All three models are rated for operation at 4,000 psi continuously, 4,350 intermittent, and 4,750 peak. All are rated at 1,800 rpm maximum speed. Typical applications include power units, fan drives, test stands, cranes, drill rigs, winches, compactors, concrete pumpers, and tunneling machinery, among other applications.
Denison Hydraulics, 14249 Industrial Pkwy, Marysville, OH 43040; FAX (937) 642-3738; www.denisonhydraulics.com.
Exhaust port heaters
Thermostatically controlled heaters prevent air valve freezing that often occurs due to rapid cool down as air expands when it exits an exhaust orifice. The thermostat monitors the surface temperature of a manifold. Once the manifold temperature lowers to 40F, the thermostat turns the heaters on. When the manifold heats up to 60F, the thermostat turns the heaters off. This feature enables users to keep the manifold circuit turned on, allowing year-round worry-free operation.
Versa Products Co. Inc., 22 Spring Valley Rd., Paramus, NJ 07652; FAX (201) 843-2931.
The 2BV3051 liquid ring vacuum pump, the "Little Baby"includes a 0.52-hp single-phase integral motor, which powers its only moving part, the impeller. Vacuum levels to 33-mbar absolute (28.5 inches of mercury vacuum) are attainable. Suction capacity is constant over a wide range of pressures. At 60 Hz operation, the maximum suction capacity is 6 CFM and sound levels are just 61 dB(A).
Siemens Energy & Automation, 4620 Forest Ave., Norwood, OH 45212-3396; FAX (513) 841-3407.
Miniature rotary vane pumps
A new line of rotary vane pumps serves as a pressure/vacuum source for gas analyzers, medical devices, process samplers, and other analytical instruments, as well as general industry applications. Featuring oil-free operation, the rotary vane pumps are said to be quiet and reliable. Suitable for handling inert gases, the pumps also feature high strength steel pump heads and carbon pump vanes. The pumps have a service life of 10,000 hours and can be field-replaced without special tools.
E. Clark & Associates, 55 Green St., Clinton, MA 01510.
The Original Line II is a stainless steel body air cylinder with built-in flow controls and fittings. It reportedly has a smaller profile than standard cylinder/flow control/fitting combinations. It also features speed control with a special "flow gear" that allows fine speed controls with over 15 turns of adjustment. Built-in, quick-connect fittings are compatible with urethane, nylon, and calibrated polyethylene tubing. Front and rear heads include built-in foot-mounting holes, and optional push-to-connect elbows and tees are available for easy installation. It provides the same design features, overall length, and mounting thread sizes as Original Line stainless steel body air cylinders.
Bimba Manufacturing, Box 68 Rte. 50 N., Monee, IL 60449; FAX (708) 534-5767; www.bimba.com.
High pressure power unit
HP Series power units are capable of pressures up to 10,000 psi. Three sizes are available to meet a wide range of applications. With an under-oil electric motor design, the units are quiet and compact. Leak-free solenoid seat valves offer the ability to hold clamping pressure for extended times while the power unit remains off.
Hydac Technology Corp., 445 Windy Point Dr., Glendale Heights, IL 60139; FAX (630) 545-0033.
Light duty slides
Series SCV Slides provide a low cost solution for non-rotating vertical or light duty horizontal applications. The units are powered by the company's Series CV Cylinders. Standard internal shock pads on the cylinder eliminate metal-to-metal contact at ends of slide travel. Ports, cushion controls, and port controls can be specified in a variety of locations for maximum flexibility. The units are available in imperial and metric versions, eight bore sizes, and travel lengths up to 12 inches (300 mm).
PHD, Box 9070, Fort Wayne, IN 46899; FAX (219) 747-6754; www.phdinc.com.
Tie rod cylinders
A new corrosion resistant tie rod cylinder, the Series SA stainless steel NFPA-type cylinder, is used in food processing and industrial markets. The cylinders are available in eight different mounting styles, and sizes ranging from 1.125 inch to eight-inch bores.
Parker Hannifin, 6035 Parkland Blvd., Cleveland, OH 44124-4141.
Plastics, Metals & Other Materials
Joseph Ogando, Regional Materials Editor
For comments on plastics, metals & other materials, contact Joseph at email@example.com
Medical devices not only need more plastics but also need more from their plastics. In addition to the mechanical requirements that drive any metal replacement job, plastic medical devices often have to withstand the rigors of sterilization, meet the healthcare industry's push toward cost containment, and endure a painstaking validation process to comply with the endless government regulations. Here's a look at some new materials that may fit the bill:
Eastman Chemical Co. will soon expand its large line-up of medical materials with new grades that could help designers cut costs without sacrificing properties. One is a new mineral-filled liquid crystal polymer (LCP). Like the company's existing Thermx LCP grades, it offers autoclavability, toughness, and superior flow, says Doug Small, business market manager for medical. Unlike earlier LCPs, this new grade uses low-cost mineral fillers rather than more expensive glass to boost dimensional stability beyond that offered by unfilled LCP. Small says the new mineral-grades will be a "significantly lower-cost alternative" to glass-filled materials, though he adds the mineral-filled material is too new to have an established price yet. Beyond providing more dimensional stability for your buck, the new material may offer another advantage for those applications in which appearance matters: "It offers better surface quality," Small says. Applications for the new LCP include surgical and dental instruments.
Eastman will also bring out a new Eastar copolyester formulated to retain copolyester's chemical resistance, clarity, and sterilization tolerance while making the material easier, and thus, less expensive, to process. According to Small, the new material offers reduced cycle times and improved mold release, so it's well suited to small, cored parts. The material also needs less drying than other copolyesters. "We're recommending four hours," Small says, though he has seen cases where the resin didn't need any drying at all. Though still developmental, the new material is available in sampling quantities.
Questra, the syndiotactic polystyrene (sPS) from Dow Chemical, will soon appear in its first medical application, a surgical instrument slated for introduction at the end of the year, Hermanson reports. While this semi-crystalline material has already seen use outside the medical world, the material has properties that Nancy Hermanson, medical market technical leader, believes will drive it into the operating room. For one, it can hold up in an autoclave. For another, it resists moisture degradation. "It's a good choice for anything needing autoclavability and durability," Hermanson says.
What's more, Questra has some processing characteristics that address the growing trend toward shrinking endoscopic and other medical components. "Miniaturization is hitting the medical device industry big time," she says, explaining that the thinner walls of smaller devices benefit from high-flow materials. So far, Questra has seen use in the connector market, in no small part due to its ability to flow. "At 100C, Questra's viscosity curve overlays that of HIPS," Hermanson notes.
Also new from Dow is a next-generation polycarbonate designed to offer improved color stability after gamma sterilization. According to Hermanson, this new Calibre MegaRad will still have very little in the way of the masking pigments typically added to protect the polycarbonate from gamma radiation. "It's the new material for those applications where you would want glass-like clarity instead of that purple tint," she says, citing fluid-path components as an example.
Eastman Chemical Co., Box 431, Kingsport, TN 37662-5371; Tel: (800) EASTMAN; www.eastman.com
Dow Chemical Co., Box 1206, Midland, MI 48674; Tel: (800)447-4369; www.dow.com
Pick of the Issue
Tougher high-flow nylons
Super-tough and toughened grades of DuPont Zytel DMX modified nylon resins are formulated to have higher toughness levels while providing dimensional stability, high flow, and property retention after exposure to elevated temperature and humidity. The new super-tough grade, Zytel DMX ST601H, measures up to the impact resistance of conventional super-tough nylons with no break during notched Izod tests at room temperature. The toughened grade, Zytel DMX T608H, offers up to three times the impact strength of standard nylon 66.
DuPont Engineering Polymers, Box 80022, Wilmington, DE 19880
Electrostatic dissipative plastic
Semtitron ESd420 combines electrostatic dissipative capabilities with a low coefficient of expansion, high strength, and heat-resistance. Intended for fixtures and handling components in semiconductor and hard drive manufacturing, this plastic comes in stock shapes for machining and is non-sloughing. It has a tensile modulus of 550,000 psi, a HDT at 264 psi of 420 F, and a surface resistivity in the intermediate range of 106 to 109 ohms/square.
DSM Engineering Plastics, 2120 Fairmont Ave., Box 14235, Reading, PA 19612; FAX (610) 320-6868.
Plastic EMI shields
CHO-VER SHIELD EMI shield covers for cellular handsets, PCs and other small packages, combine a slim-profile metallized plastic (nickel-copper and Ultem) with a low-closure-force conductive elastomer gasket. Custom shaped, the covers replace the use of solder-mounted metal cans over board components. CHO-VER SHIELD provides 100 dB of shielding at 500 MHz.
Chomerics, Division of Parker Hannifin, 77 Dragon Ct., Woburn, MA 01888; FAX (781) 933-4318.
Verton MFX-HS Concentrate represents a low-cost approach to achieving the mechanical properties of long-glass-fiber-reinforced (LFR) thermoplastics in molded components. Blending this new LFR polypropylene concentrate with unfilled polypropylene reduces material costs by more than 10% compared to conventional LFR polypropylene grades, the company reports. Blends created with the new concentrate reportedly show no drop in mechanical performance versus compounds with 30% pultruded long glass, and they show improved surface appearance and impact property retention at low temperatures. Applications for the concentrate include hand tools, lawn-and-garden equipment, and automotive instrument panels, structural door modules, and load floors.
LNP Engineering Plastics, 475 Creamery Way, Exton, PA 19341; FAX (610) 363-4749.
Sputter-target bonding material
Excelomer elastomers create bonded joints between sputter targets and their metallic backing plates. Intended as a lower-cost and lower-heat alternative to Indium bonding processes, the elastomers are particularly suited to applications where metals need to be joined to non-metals.
STS Inc., 1394 Tully Rd., Suite 215, San Jose, CA 95122; FAX (408) 971-4287.
UV resistant capstock
Solarkote A acrylic capstock resin has been formulated to extend the UV protection of acrylic resins. The company reports that the new formulation offers twice the substrate protection of comparable acrylic capstocks of the same thickness. The enhanced protection may allow manufacturers to rework more of their scrap without sacrificing the impact toughness of the end product.
Elf Atochem, 2000 Market Street, Philadelphia, PA 19103-3222; www.elf-atochem.com.
High-visibility plastic labels
Plastic cable and conduit labels in high-visibility colors are available for indoor or outdoor use. "Caution" labels with black printing on bright orange background specifically identify telephone, CATV, data, or fiber optic lines. "Danger" labels printed in white on red backgrounds, signify high-voltage as well as nine individual voltages from 120 to 600 volts.
VIP Products, Box 924647, Houston, TX 77292; FAX (800) 967-3986.
A productive stainless alloy
Carpenter Project 7000 stainless steel (UNS S15500) has been developed as a more machinable version of standard 15Cr-5Ni stainless. Tests conducted by Carpenter show that this precipitation hardened steel offers machinability improvements of 3.5 to 10 times, depending on the heat-treated condition. Project 7000 stainless still meets all requirements of AMS 5659 and is a candidate material for rod-end bearings, some engine parts, and a variety of aircraft structural components.
Carpenter Technology, Box 14662, Reading, PA 19612-4662; FAX (610) 208-2776.
Clear, internally lubricated plastics
Lubriclear plastics feature a proprietary internal lubricant that maintains the clarity of ABS, SAN, and polystyrene base resins. The company reports that the Lubriclear materials offer a clarity of more than 70% light transmission at 550 nanometers down to 1/16-inch thickness. Mechanical properties for the Lubriclear resins are similar to those of the base resin. Applications for clear, lubricated materials include medical devices, automotive control knobs and buttons, and business machine components.
LNP Engineering Plastics, 475 Creamery Way, Exton, PA 19341; FAX (610) 363-4749.