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New Products Provide a Distributed Motion Solution with EtherCAT Technology

Thu, 08/05/2010 - 11:13am
National Instruments today announced new AKD Servo Drives and AKM Servo Motors that make it possible for engineers and scientists to easily build scalable, distributed motion control systems. The new products simplify setup and configuration for deploying custom motion applications to any NI real-time controller supporting NI EtherCAT technology including NI CompactRIO, PXI real-time controllers and NI industrial controllers.

Additionally, National Instruments is releasing the NI LabVIEW 2010 NI SoftMotion Module that provides support for NI EtherCAT drives for simplified motion application development. The new AKM brushless servo motors provide superior dynamic performance, are available in four different frame sizes and feature high torque, density and speed ranges. The motors use low-inertia rotors and feature low-cog, low-harmonic distortion magnetic design. The motors also are perfectly matched with NI servo drives and provide plug-and-play configuration with integrated Smart Feedback Device (SFD) technology and simplified cabling.

The new AKD Servo Drives feature simplified setup and configuration through EtherCAT technology and integration with the LabVIEW project, a feature in LabVIEW software that engineers use to group together LabVIEW and third-party files, create build specifications for executables and deploy or download files to hardware targets.

The new drives deliver cutting-edge technology and performance with torque loop updates in 0.67µs, and velocity and position loops at 62.5µs and 125µs. The AKD Servo Drives provide a solution for a wide range of applications, from basic torque-and-velocity applications to indexing to multi-axis programmable motion, using graphical system design.

The new motors and drives provide seamless integration with LabVIEW graphical programming through the LabVIEW NI SoftMotion Module to deliver graphical development for custom motion control applications. With the module, engineers and scientists can use the LabVIEW project to configure motion axis settings, test configuration, tune motors and quickly develop a custom motion application.

The new version of the NI SoftMotion Module features an updated interactive configuration and a high-level function block API for increased ease of use and makes the execution of motion applications on a Windows-based system possible. In addition, the new module easily connects to the new drives and motors as well as third-party drives and motors using NI C Series drive interface hardware.

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