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White Paper: Reducing vibration of cable carriers

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Learn more at www.igus.com/energychains In a wide range of applications customers are demanding increased accuracy and precision from their production equipment. Simultaneously, increasingly complex automation has created an additional challenge, as the vibration of dynamic machine components can significantly increase vibration of the complete system. In a number of industries, including printer design, semiconductor manufacturing and machine tools, cable carrier systems can be a possible source of vibration. Cable carrier systems supply energy, data and other media, and as technology increases, so too does the number of cables and hoses that require guidance. As cable carriers guide and protect cables and hoses throughout the motion of the printer, machine tool, etc., vibration of the supporting structure of the cable carrier can occur, as well as at the moving end or tow arm of the machine. This vibration can negatively influence the performance of a machine once it reaches a certain level. For manufacturers, as well as their customers, factors that limit the capabilities of precision systems must be tackled using cable carrier systems that minimize vibrations and maximize smooth and precise operation. In printing, milling, or other precise tasks, dynamic loads are the typical source of vibration, which can cause chatter on tools and workpieces alike. These chatter vibrations not only decrease the quality of the print, product, etc., but can also cause increased wear on the components of the machine itself, leading to product defects, system malfunctions and downtime. Because of this, the dependence on low-vibration materials and machine components is on the rise in an effort to limit self-generated machine vibrations. Designing vibration-reducing components Most cable carrier systems utilize a pin-and-bore connection between the individual links of the carrier in order to guarantee a secure connection under high dynamic loads. This type of connection also gives the carrier system protection against external influences, resistance to high torsional forces, high tensile strength, and high mechanical durability. However, a disadvantage of the pin-and-bore design is the resulting relative motion between the links, which over time can cause wear on moving parts. In addition, the rolling motion Reducing vibration of cable carriers on high precision machinery by Dan Thompson Product Manager for energy chain ® cable carrier systems, igus ® Inc.

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