Scara robots are ideal to perform pick-and-place or assembly tasks in the industry. However, these dynamics has a limited lifespan due to the corrugated hoses wearing out within a very short time. Therefore, igus has now developed an alternative, which can be retrofitted with the SCARA Cable Solution, which significantly increases the service life.
The horizontal articulated-arm robots work fast over four axes. The inner and outer arms pivot horizontally. The component for gripping objects, the ball screw, moves rotationally and linearly. This allows the robot arm to reach almost any point in its working radius. This is fast and precise, but it means that the externally routed cables and hoses have to be replaced or serviced frequently due to the high loads. This was also the case for a manufacturer in the automotive industry who wants to optimise its energy supply – both the corrugated tube and the rotary bearing.
“Inspired by this challenge in the market, we looked at the weak points of the hoses and connectors and developed the SCARA Cable Solution in a two-year research and testing process,” explains Matthias Meyer, Head of Business Unit ECS triflex & Robotics at igus GmbH. The new development is a customised cable guide that safely guides the energy from axis 1 to the ball screw and prevents the cables from kinking even in continuous operation.
The SCARA Cable Solution consists of three components: the rotary bearing for the moving end and the fixed end, as well as the corrugated hose with the e-rib. The special feature lies in the new rotary connection, which absorbs the torsional forces. Here, integrated ball bearings ensure a smooth-running energy supply system that is resistant even to high accelerations. The corrugated hose is reinforced with an e-rib, so that it can only move in one spatial direction. The guide elements on the sides give the hose unsupported length.