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Multi-functional gantry in lightweight design



  • What was needed: Weight-optimised linear guides
  • Requirements: Good price-performance ratio
  • Industry: Education
  • Success for the customer: Project support and consultation on the selection of components

The present student project of the institutes BIK and BIME (University of Bremen) deals with the development of an NC-controlled linear robot for use as a multifunctional machine tool. This should have three axes and the construction must be lightweight.

Multi-functional gantry in lightweight construction

The project

The linear drive in the x-direction is provided by a gantry combination of two stepper motors which drive two trapezoidal lead screws. These are flange-mounted using lead screw bearing blocks from igus. Using plastic lead screw nuts made of iglidur J, which are mounted on two drylin T guide carriages on each side, the rotational movement of the trapezoidal lead screw is converted into a linear movement. This design ensures the movement of the y-axis. The device for infeed in z-direction in the working area is installed on this transverse axis. Shaft end support and infeed are each moved by a trapezoidal lead screw, four guide carriages (drylin T), which move on guide systems, and a stepper motor. By installing the appropriate tools, this linear robot is able to carry out light milling operations, measuring operations and 3D printing.
The majority of all components such as lead screw bearings, nut holders,

guide rails with appropriate guide carriages, energy chains, and so on were purchased from igus due to the  very good price-performance ratio. The portfolio offers weight-optimised linear guides that are very well suited to the lightweight construction aspect that needs to be implemented. Furthermore, ordering several parts from one manufacturer ensures their correct functioning and compatibility with each other. In addition, CAD models are already available for all offered parts in the download area at without prior registration. These can be directly integrated into your own design, which makes the construction work much easier. With the young engineering support (YES), igus has an initiative to support student projects with sample parts and generous discounts, which made financing within the given framework possible in the first place.