World's smallest hexapod with rotating platform
The composition is similar to a hexapod. But rather than changing the length of the supporting legs, the rotapod varies the position of the foot points. This changes the position in the movement plane. The composition can be adapted to your specifications. The nodes may be mounted directly to a device or integrated into a composition. Here the movement possibilities are defined by the diameter of the base, the diameter of the head nodes and the length of the supporting legs.
Depending on the application, the retaining rings may be mounted using roller bearings or ball bearings. Ball bearings are suitable for heavy loads and a high level of accuracy. Roller bearings are less costly but also do not stand up to as much strain. Pneumatic or friction mounts may be used in special cases.
Thanks to its scalability, the rotapod is suitable for a wide variety of applications. It can be individually adapted to the required load by selecting the mounting system, the number of balls in the main bearing and the design of the hinge points.
Control unit of the Rotapod – EtherCAT capable – different interfaces are possible
Intelligence is a key feature of the rotapod. The algorithms to control six motors with seven degrees of freedom are calculated by powerful computers. Both the position calculations and user programming are completed on the same computer.
An industrial PC, which calculates the position data and transmits them to the control system as well as the 3D graphics system, is used to control the rotapod. The system may also be controlled by a desktop PC or large-scale computer system, depending on the application. The positioning algorithms calculate the position, acceleration and speed of the individual retaining collars. The 3D-graphics are based on these key data. They also represent a true simulation of the data. The control system accesses the same results from the positioning algorithms and generates the data for the drives.
The hardware supports various connection types. Profibus, Ethernet and CAN-Open may be used to integrate the rotapod control system into your network.
An implementation of LabView is in preparation.