New outdoor test laboratory for large e-chains

Treotham Automation Pty Ltd

Thursday, 31 October, 2019

New outdoor test laboratory for large e-chains

A great challenge for operators of sewage plants, waste incineration plants, cranes, power plants or mines is to guide data, energy and media safely on long travels. High speeds combined with a high fill weight often pose problems for energy supply systems such as motor cable drums, bus bars or festoons.

Energy chain manufacturer igus has commissioned a new automated test facility for long distances in outdoor premises in Cologne Porz-Lind.

Energy chains and cables are tested at the new location at a speed of up to 8 m/s on a track of 200 m, which corresponds to a 400 metre-long travel. With additional units, travels up to 1000 m can be simulated in the future. The fully automatic system accounts for a wide range of applications in terms of acceleration and speed. In addition to the mechanical load caused by the movement of the transfer vehicle, environmental influences act unimpeded on the tested energy chains and cables. The test rig is part of the company’s 3800 m2 experimental laboratory. More than 10 billion test cycles per year are carried out with e-chains and chainflex cables at a total of 180 testing stations. 4100 energy chain system tests are performed annually on 180 systems such as the climate chamber or on robots.

The company said that its energy chain systems can be moved effortlessly over distances of up to one kilometre or more with a fill weight of 50 kg/m. As guidance for cables and hoses, they can be guided smoothly and with low friction in long travels through guide troughs and enclosures. The roller energy chains of the P4 series, which are tested in the outdoor facilities, have already proven their worth in more than 1000 crane and gantry applications worldwide, with travels of up to 800 m, high speeds of more than 5 m/s and several million cycles with low vibration and traversing noise.

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