Enabling Technologies for the Cobot Revolution
Many cobots are designed to mimic a human arm, with flexible “shoulder”, “elbow” and “wrist” joints. Accurate measurement of the rotary position of these joints is central to enabling the cobots’ control system to keep track of the spatial orientation of all of its moving parts. This is typically provided through rotary encoders mounted in each of the device’s joints.
Encoders measure rotation and return a digital signal that reports the angle of rotation (absolute encoders) or rate of motion (incremental encoders) to the control system. The ‘right’ encoders for cobots need to be accurate, reliable, and compact, with excellent dynamic response characteristics. They also need to be reasonably priced. POSITAL-FRABA has responded to this challenge by developing new sensing technologies – such as magnetic and capacitive rotary encoders – that provide cobot manufacturers vital feedback for closed-loop control systems. In order to ensure that these devices meet the needs of cobot builders, POSITAL-FRABA offers products with a wide range of performance characteristics, communications interfaces and physical configurations.