Success Story from Kollmorgen – Virtual reality and servo motors: a dynamic partnership

With efficient torque density, the 3 DOF platforms powered by Kollmorgen Servo for a VR roller coaster become reality
Virtual reality and servo motors: a dynamic partnership
Authentic rollercoaster experience: The Smaaash Coaster with Kollmorgen servo technology.
Nowadays servo motors are used not only in industry and mechanical engineering, but also in innovative areas such as Virtual Reality. In this context, word of Kollmorgen’s high-performance motor and drive technology has spread as far as India. Kollmorgen helped to drive the 3 DOF (degrees of freedom) platforms for a high-tech virtual reality application for Smaaash in India. Kollmorgen servo-geared motors and drives support the thrill of a roller coaster simulator.
Passengers taking the seat in this simulator get an undeniable adrenaline rush as the roller coaster tears up and down through steep curves at breakneck speed. The passengers are shaken in their seats back and forth and laughter and stifled screams bear witness to speed euphoria. What sounds like a fun visit to the amusement park is actually a new application called Finger Coaster, which combines virtual reality with the dynamics of servomotors. With its rollercoaster seats and VR glasses, it almost feels like the real thing for passengers of this rocking rollercoaster simulator. Kollmorgen, partnered with Smaaash, the international motion and simulation game factory in Mumbai, India, provides the necessary drive to harmonize technology and the digital world.
Realistic roller coaster feeling with servo drive
The Kollmorgen servo motors offer high energy efficiency, high performance and durability. In addition, the motors in terms of revs and torque can be precisely graded and specified to the particular application – all of these are factors of great importance for the Smaaash applications, which is why the company has been relying on the performance of Kollmorgen motors for around three years now.
In the past, Kollmorgen and Smaaash had already jointly implemented other similar projects and have now successfully launched the Finger Coaster application. The Mumbai-based company specializes in the development of high-tech virtual reality games and VR entertainment. From sightseeing flights dangling in a glider, to balancing acts at dizzying heights and to the real excitement and emotions of a penalty shootout against a supersonic goalkeeper, Smaaash offers everything that makes the heart of the VR fan beat faster. For their latest VR Sensation, a virtual roller coaster, the company has once more collaborated with Kollmorgen and decided to use the AKM Servo Motors and AKD Servo Drives. These turn the ride in the virtual roller coaster into a real, live experience, because the characteristic movements of the coaster seats are almost identical to those of a real roller coaster, blasting along on rails thanks to motors and controls. With Motion Control, passengers experience a new level of virtual reality. The trick of the Finger Coaster is that passengers can build their own route via touch function. You can decide for yourself just how racy you want your roller coaster ride to be.
Working together for the virtual reality of tomorrow
Vinod Sharma, Country Manager at Kollmorgen India, is excited about the renewed productive cooperation with Smaaash. He explains: “The partnership with Smaaash is especially important to us. It will strengthen our global footprint and enable us to work on interesting technical challenges over and over again. This extends our engineering competence as well.”
Smaaash Chief Technology Officer Kaizad Bajina is very happy: “On the one hand, of course, we appreciate the high-quality products and the many years of experience in partnership with Kollmorgen. For our VR simulators we need motors that are absolutely reliable even in the long term and on the other hand, we benefit from global support as Kollmorgen extends its reach globally. This results in short voting paths and we can get all the motion-related world class components under one roof.”
In future, Smaaash wants to convert to the new AKM2G Servo Motor line, which is characterized by a performance innovation of plus 30% torque density, in which the installation volume remains compact. This means that the motors offer significantly more power with the same space requirements. Highly accurate, safety-critical, and highly dynamic applications are even more efficient, thanks to optimized power density.
As for working with Smaaash, Vinod Sharma says, “The Finger Coaster project, like previous VR simulator projects, was really exciting. Kollmorgen has more than half a million AKM Servomotors in its portfolio, which we can use to support almost any application, but our work is something special for Smaaash VR applications. We are looking forward to the future, especially with regard to our new AKM2G Servo Motor line. The optimized performance of our motors opens up new possibilities in those applications.”
Author: Vinod Sharma, Country Manager India, KOLLMORGEN

As a Gold Partner, Micromech are able to supply and provide expertise on Kollmorgen products. Contact our sales team on 01376 333333 or for price and delivery or technical assistance.
The use of this news article and images came with permission from Kollmorgen.

Plug-and-Play Smart Stepper Motor for Closed-Loop Operation

Trinamic’s PD-1378 PANdrive smart stepper motors combine robust stepper motors with closed-loop operation for higher precision, reliability, efficiency, and safety.
Trinamic - PD-1378Micromech announces Trinamic’s latest addition to their line of PANdrive™ smart motors with the closed-loop PD-1378 stepper drive. A complete mechatronic solution with 12…48V DC and 9A RMS current per motor phase, the easy to use PANdrive is controlled via CAN bus interface and uses the CANopen or TMCL protocol.
Features and benefits:
  • Supply Voltage: 12…48V DC
  • 9A RMS current per motor phase:
  • CAN bus interface with TMCL or CANopen protocol
  • Built-in high-resolution encoder for closed-loop operation
  • Integrated SixPoint™ ad S-Shaped ramp generator
  • Trinamic’s unique feature set including StealthChop™, SpreadCycle™, Coolstep™, and StallGuard™
“With ready to use building blocks, machine builders can ramp up efficiency and shorten time-to-market of new applications. Designed with an industry-leading feature set, engineers can focus on those aspects that make their product unique. The smart stepper motors with closed-loop functionality make application design more reliable, allow for easily scalable systems, and reduce the resources needed by saving precious time and money,” according to Trinamic’s Founder and CEO Michael Randt.
Offered in NEMA23, NEMA24, and NEMA34 flange-size, the closed-loop smart stepper motor delivers the efficiency of a servo drive while offering considerably more torque than servo motors of comparable size at low speeds. This makes them ideal for automation across industries where requirements regulating energy efficiency, size, cost, and noise are increasingly stricter. With 55Ncm – 700Ncm holding torque, the plug-and-play solution fits applications for lab automation, manufacturing, robotics, factory automation, and CNCs.
At the center of the product is the company’s own TMC5160 driver combined with the TMC4361 servo-controller IC, transforming digital information into perfect physical motion. Besides Trinamic’s popular features including increased energy-efficiency and quiet operation, the PD-1378 also offers advanced velocity control with SixPoint™ and S-Shaped ramping profiles.
Engineers can program the smart stepper motor with Trinamic’s Motion Control Language (TMCL), using the free and easy to use GUI, or with CANopen. Offered in different lengths and flange-sizes for best compatibility with various use cases.
For further information on the PD-1378 for your application contact Micromech on 01376 333333 or Email


The use of this news article and images came with permission from Trinamic.

Success Story from Kollmorgen – Servo drives simulate road behaviour

IMS Gear relies on KOLLMORGEN’s Motion Control solution for its test bench technology 
Servo drives simulate road behavior
Servo drives simulate road behavior
Designed precisely: The peak torques of the AKM servo motors are exhausted to the maximum for a brief period on the test benches.
Employees in the test room constantly face the challenge of testing components and assemblies before the peripheral equipment associated with these – i.e. the subsequent overall product – is even available for real. When employees are testing power assisted steering for instance, driving situations need to be simulated precisely even though the associated car is not even on the market yet. Gear and transmission specialist IMS Gear uses servo drives from KOLLMORGEN to represent authentic original situations on its test benches. The range of tests is a diverse one, requiring creative designs and with high standards related to the control technology.
Comfort, safety, mobility: electromechanical drives installed in cars move in line with these three concepts. The usage areas derived from this range from cooling fans to headlight range control and automatic clutch systems. Door closing mechanisms, seat adjustments, parking brakes and automatic trunk closing aids are also driven electromechanically with soft close automatic mechanisms. Whether used as part of the chassis, bodywork or engine: electromechanical drives are extremely important in vehicles. One specialist in this area is international leader in gear and transmission technology IMS Gear SE & Co. KGaA located in Donaueschingen in Germany. IMS Gear is a permanent fixture in the automotive sector with its technical solutions for components, assemblies and gears.
A tough regime for the brakes
“Just imagine you are traveling down a steep pass to a mountain lake with your boat attached to the tow-bar and want to launch it straight into the water. When you reverse the car into water that may be around ten degrees Celsius, the brakes get a shock after the descent from the mountain, because they go from around 140 degrees Celsius to just 10 in a matter of seconds.” This is how Markus Domachowski, Test Lab manager at IMS Gear, describes real-life events in the life of a car. Extreme events such as these are the ones that make the design for the corresponding testing technology so demanding. “The goal is to simulate subsequent actual usage in the car”, says Domachowski, before speaking of approximately 150 test benches in operation at IMS Gear – mostly driven by servo motors from KOLLMORGEN’s AKM series.
The job of the AKM servo motors is to simulate typical loads. With a tailgate drive for instance the DC motor has to cope with different torques with varying speeds. The resistance increases if the motor pulls the trunk door the last few centimeters into the seal of the body. In this case the AKM servo motor generates a correspondingly high torque in the role of the seal and thereby simulates the real-life situation. Cases involving typical operating errors simulated on test benches are equally exciting, such as when the driver tugs at the tailgate out of habit instead of pressing the button on the key. The assemblies also have to endure these types of events in addition to continuous operation. The vehicle’s staying power can only be validated with endurance tests and targeted aging measures.
Close engineering collaboration
Realistic reproduction of everyday scenarios involves continuous challenges in terms of the control technology, requiring the best true running characteristics and optimum flexibility in the programming for the servo drives. IMS Gear works closely with the company Elektronische Antriebs-Technik GmbH (EAT) from Freiburg for this. EAT is a Certified Partner of KOLLMORGEN and has played an important role in engineering at IMS Gear for years. “We get deeply involved in the servo technology and automation and together with KOLLMORGEN are able to support our customers effectively, particularly in the area of special purpose machine manufacturing”, says Christian Reinsch, technical head at EAT. “Drives for test benches are anything but off-the-shelf solutions.”
The KOLLMORGEN S700 range servo drives form the centerpiece of the control system. “We require a very flexible controller because we often need multiple operating modes in one test”, explains Markus Domachowski. The S700 can be freely programmed in the IEC 61131-3 languages and is designed primarily to fulfill particularly complex drive tasks – up to and including SIL3 with respect to safety engineering. The S700 servo drives are connected to the higher-level control system via EtherCAT. IMS Gear relies on the LabView System with the CompactRIO from National Instruments for this.
Endurance tests in development
Quality begins during the product and process development phase with customers for the automobile supplier from Donaueschingen, because the closely interlocked project management process also includes quality assurance measures from development through to serial production. “The specially coordinated testing equipment ensures the quality of the finished gear wheels, assemblies and gearboxes in accordance with customer requirements”, explains Domachowski. The Test Lab manager has been working for IMS Gear for nearly 30 years and also passes his knowledge of mechatronics onto younger employees as training manager.
Knowing the processes enables employees to design the servo drives used on the test benches precisely together with EAT. A bit of a balancing act is required with each test bench so as not to size the rated speeds and torques too generously. “When we need to deal with relatively small torque requirements, we can’t have too large a layout for the motors, because this influences the measurement results as a result of the dead weight being too high”, explains Peter Faller, testing engineer at IMS Gear. The aim of the joint development work with EAT – which was also honored as “Partner of the Year” by KOLLMORGEN in 2016 – generally involves exhausting the peak torques of the AKM servo motors. “We can make the most of the high overload capacity because the motors are only under a heavy load for a brief period during the test cycles”, highlights Christian Reinsch. The synchronous servo motors together with the S700 servo drives guarantee very good true running characteristics as a result. The S700 provides cogging compensation at this point in order to balance out the cogging torques that occur naturally with the motors. “We exclude any of these types of interference wherever possible on our test benches”, highlights Peter Faller.
New motors for new possibilities
Christian Reinsch from EAT sees “the AKMs as some of the best servo motors in the world with their power density and performance”. KOLLMORGEN has been able to increase the power density by up to 30 percent with the new AKM2G generation of motors available since 2017. The success is in the detail here. The increased power density with improved torque/speed ratio is primarily the result of the optimized stator geometry. This has allowed KOLLMORGEN to reduce the copper losses in the windings. The benefits: improved energy efficiency and space for more output with the same construction volume. The AKM2G range also features smoother cogging behavior, which ultimately improves control accuracy. This widens the options for testing components for the automobile industry more effectively during continuous operation for companies such as IMS Gear.
Author: Thomas Sautter Sales Manager Germany KOLLMORGEN Europe GmbH
As a Gold Partner, Micromech are able to supply and provide expertise on Kollmorgen products. Contact our sales team on 01376 333333 or for price and delivery or technical assistance.
The use of this news article and images came with permission from Kollmorgen.


Scalable Solutions for High-Power Stepper Motors

The TMCM-1278, as well as the PD60/86-1278 PANdrive™, offers the complete solution for driving and controlling high-power stepper motors with a state of the art feature set.
Micromech announces the latest products from Trinamic with the TMCM-1278 module and the PD-1278 PANdrive, a smart motor solution offered in NEMA24 and NEMA34. Controlled via CAN bus interface, it supports Trinamic’s own TMCL firmware and CANopen for ease of use.
Encased in a special housing enclosure, the products are perfect for lab automation, manufacturing and factory automation, robotics, and CNC machines that require high-power stepper motors of up to 9A RMS with a supply voltage of 12..48V DC. As for holding torque, the PANdrive versions offer up to 7.0Nm (PD86-3-1278)
“With the minimum amount of assembly and programming required, the TMCM-1278 and PD-1278 allow for easily scalable systems. Depending on the use case, they can quickly be added or swapped without changing the system design,” explains Michael Randt, Founder and CEO of Trinamic. “All you need to do is connect a cable and you’re ready to get started.”
Making sure even the bigger NEMA34 motors operate as quiet and precise as possible, each product features StealthChop™ for silent operation at low speeds and standstill and SpreadCycle™ for operation at higher speeds. Together with the integrated SixPoint™ ramp generator and microstepping, the 1278-series brings industry-leading motor and motion control to powerful stepper motors.
Besides the industry-standard protocol CANopen, Engineers can also opt for the TMCL version which allows for stand-alone operation using the TMCL mini-PLC, programmable with the free and easy to use TMCL-IDE™. For additional monitoring of the drive, the I/Os can be used as general-purpose inputs or ABN encoder inputs.
Features and benefits:
  • Supply Voltage: 12…48V DC
  • Current per motor phase: 9A RMS
  • CAN bus interface with TMCL or CANopen protocol
  • Integrated SixPoint™ ramp generator
  • Trinamic’s unique feature set including StealthChop, SpreadCycle, Coolstep, and StallGuard
  • Trinamic’s unique feature set including StealthChop, SpreadCycle, Coolstep, and StallGuard
Trinamic - TMCM-1278 PD-1278
For further information on the TMCM-1278 or the PD-1278 for your application contact Micromech on 01376 333333 or Email


The use of this news article and images came with permission from Trinamic.

Save up to 70% on ball screw costs

Thomson precision-formed ball screws with P3 accuracy for precision applications
Thomson - precision-formed ball screwsHigh-precision processes and precision applications often require ball screws with an accuracy class of P3 and there is a commonly-held view among mechanical design engineers that this accuracy can only be achieved with ground-thread screws.
Now, Thomson offers ball screws with a lead accuracy class of P3 (12 µm / 300 mm) manufactured using our proprietary rolling process called Precision Screw Forming Technology (PST).
The advantage of Thomson’s rolled P3 ball screws is while meeting the same precision as ground spindles, they cost up to 70% less.
Their high precision is achieved through several factors:
The selection of the raw material is to precisely defined specifications while our proprietary forming and subsequent heat treatment processes using the latest technology are crucial.
The rolling process also results in a stronger material grain structure, so that the screw has a higher fatigue strength and thus a longer service life compared to ground screws.
Features and benefits include:
  • Lengths up to 15 m; diameters of 12 – 80 mm, leads of 5 – 50 mm.
  • Maximum dynamic loads up to 480 kN.
  • Available with single or double ball screw nuts (flanged or cylindrical).
  • Application expertise and advice from the Thomson engineers.
  • Customized products – even with smaller quantities; special solutions for harsh environments.
  • Thomson Neff Industries GmbH is DIN ISO 9001: 2015 certified.

Ideal applications include:

  • Machining centers.
  • Machine tools (turning, milling, grinding, drilling).
  • Metal forming, stamping presses, water jet cutting.
  • Factory automation.
  • Precision industrial robots.
  • Manufacturing of electronic assemblies.
  • Packaging equipment.
  • Medical equipment.

For further information or assistance specifying Thomson Ballscrews for your application contact Micromech on 01376 333333 or Email


The use of this news article and images came with permission from Thomson.