The America’s Cup is as much a design race as it is a sailing race. Racing through the unpredictable waters and weather elements requires not only skill from the sailors but reliability from the state of the art technology inside the AC75 yachts.
On a sunny October day we were given access to the workshop and a behind the scenes tour of the Auckland base by Luke McAllum, Mechanical Engineer with Emirates Team New Zealand. Luke explained some of the mechanics of the boat and gave a sneak peek of the boat pre-launch, while it was getting its mast stepped.
For about the past year, Luke has been liaising with Brett Motum, maxon motor Australia Managing Director, as part of the team designing the AC75 Class yacht. maxon are an Official Supplier of DC motors and provide drive systems advice. The America’s Cup AC75 Class Rule allows the use of electric motors to operate hydraulic valves, drive clutches, rudders and foils. Teams may also use motors for driving simulator platforms and numerous test jigs.
“The America’s Cup is as much a design race as it is a sailing race. Innovation & technology is at the forefront of every team’s priorities” said Luke.
The base, situated on the foreshore of Auckland’s harbour, has been a hive of activity. “We are still one and a half year’s out from the Cup. But every team is flat out with design and development” said Luke.
Taking a look at Emirates Team New Zealand’s AC75 yacht, Te Aihe, it is 75 ft long and weighs around 6.5 tonne. There are two foil arms on the boat, with a foil wing on the bottom of the arm. Each foil arm moves through 120 degrees articulation and the foils have a wing span of approximately 4 metres. On each foil wing, there is a foil flap, that the sailing crew control to fly the boat.
When the boat is in the dock, it’s in dock configuration which means both the foil arms are down at 0 degrees giving maximum stability. When the boat is in sailing mode, the leeward foil arm goes up about 60 degrees which puts the foil wing horizontal and the windward foil arm goes up about 120 degrees which lifts it fully clear of the water. This allows the crew to fly the boat using the controls inside the cockpit. The foiling control system is of course top secret.
When the team perform a manoeuvre they drop the windward foil wing down and lift up the leeward foil arm. Both of these maneuverers take about 3 seconds each. The foil arms weigh 1.2 tonne each and the crew are lifting these from 60 to 120 degrees, or the equivalent of 3 metres in vertical height, all in about 3 seconds. The configuration is designed to give maximum stability to the yacht throughout the manoeuvres.
While in dock the team perform dock commissioning checks before the boat is in the sailing environment ensuring all system functionalities are checked.
maxon inside Ti Aihe
We are shown one of the containerised workshops, where the design & engineering team have been working with Brett Motum and his team at maxon motor Australia. “The service that they have provided has been absolutely fantastic” said Luke. The maxon 480 W DC motor combined with a 42mm gearbox, driven by an EPOS motor controller is one of the DC motor combinations the Team have been excited to work with.
Luke said “What we really like about this motor is the size and the power it provides for how compact it is.” While Luke would like to tell us more about the DC motors, the rest is classified information.
“The America’s Cup is all about the small details and getting that small edge over our competitors. We’d like to thank maxon very much for the support they have provided. We’re looking forward to the future and the exciting development of their products on the race yacht.” said Luke.
maxon motor Australia Tel. +61 2 9457 7477.
maxon motor Australia is an Official Supplier to Emirates Team New Zealand. We follow the progress of their journey as Defender in the 36th America’s Cup campaign, March 2021.
maxon motor have achieved higher levels of power density for their 4 pole brushless gearmotors.
Up to 96% efficiency and 5Nm from a gearhead that is only 22mm diameter. This new series of ultra-power gearheads has been perfectly matched with a 4 pole 120W brushless DC motor and a 1000cpt 3 channel encoder. With the exception of maxon motors specialist oil filled heavy duty gearboxes the new series gives the highest torque levels available from 22mm. Intermittent torque ratings have increased from 3.8 to 6.5Nm with a maximum speed input of 10,000rpm. The pictured combination is the first of the series supplied to customers in Australia and also exhibits a custom shaft with key and keyway. Additionally, the motor is fitted with temperature sensors in contact with the winding to allow the brushless DC 4 pole motor to be pushed to its continuous thermal capacity. A sealed bearing system and continuous welding of inline components protect the assembly for use in harsh environments and give optimal assembly strength making the gearmotor series particularly suitable for Aerospace applications.
For more information contact maxon motor Australia tel. +61 9457 7477.
Brushless motor with encoder and gear. Customised to perfectly match critical servo motor requirements
Requiring up to 22Nm of intermittent torque with only a tiny amount of available space, only maxon motor could custom build the perfect solution for this application. The brushless DC motor contains an internal 1024cpt encoder and is only 22mm long.
Outrunner style pancake motors have an external rotor which offers both advantages and disadvantages. The brushless DC motor has the rotor magnets mounted on the outside of the stator giving the motor more available torque via the additional distance between where the force is produced and the shaft. Essentially, more leverage. However, having an external rotor leaves the rotating mass exposed to the operating environment where it could potentially be impacted upon and create imbalances on the motor.
maxon motor were able to combine a unique combination of a flat brushless DC motor with an internal 1024 count per turn encoder with a ceramic planetary gearhead to meet a customers’ application requirements, though the exposed rotor was a concern for the engineer. By re-designing the front mounting flange of the motor, maxon were able to build a custom rear cover for the motor to protect it and stay within the maximum 43mm available diameter. This must be designed around the thermal requirements of the motor when working in the application environment under the specific loads and duty cycles.
Customisation processes like this for specific requirements then become available for other applications and eventually catalogue components. The motor is now available for system voltages from 12V to 48V with internal encoders from 256 counts per revolution to 2048 counts. There is a ventilated version for high power density, a standard version and an enclosed version.
Contact maxon motor Australia for application assistance. + 61 2 9457 7477.
Brushless flat DC motor with hollow bore for air and light transmission.
Today we exhibit a new motor development featuring a Brushless DC (BLDC) flat motor. Flat motors are also commonly referred to as pancake motors. This unit has a body length of just 38mm and an output power of over 157W and 6000rpm at the shaft in the application. The average motor power rating for the series across 6 variants is 100W. The overall motor diameter is 68mm and it can be supplied with or without protective covers for IP rating. The motor is available with an internal encoder with resolutions up to 16,384qc per revolution making it suitable as a rotary stage of robotic joint actuator. The unique feature though is the motors hollow shaft. This is to enable customers to pass light or air through the bore of the motor. Air transmission is a common requirement for packaging and placement machinery and light or fibre is a common requirement for film and camera gimbal applications. This motor was also manufactured with the customers shaft length and bore specifications in combination with a custom rear shaft extension at the rear from the motor rotor.
Contact maxon motor Australia for motor specifications or assistance with a custom solution Tel. +61 2 9457 7477.
First maxon motor of its kind. Brushless DC motor with hall sensors, absolute encoder and incremental outputs
For fine motor position control across multiple generation brushless motor controller models, maxon motor Australia has supplied the first of its kind maxon EC-max brushless DC motor with three modes of feedback.
The new micromotor encoder 16 Easy Absolute 16mm x 9mm offers high resolution motor feedback from a tiny package. Additionally it offers 4,096 counts per turn incremental outputs with line driver channels and an index pulse. The Absolute output is available in the choice of Binary BiSS-C or Gray Symmetric SSI. The encoders use an interpolated hall sensor angle measurement system to generate the incremental quadrature output signals according to EIA-422 with 20mA maximum current draw and ESD protections built in. The angle value zero of the encoder is factory aligned with the BLDC motor zero point and the encoder is welded in place on the rear flange of the motor. When fitted with a multi pole brushless DC motor the encoder can still show the angle values zero once per mechanical turn and the angle zero is identical to the index position. The motor itself also contains three hall sensors for commutation purposes. An adaptor is available to convert the single ended clock and data signals of the absolute encoder into TIA/EIA RS422 compliant differential clock and data lines.
For special configurations of this unique feedback solution with other maxon motor types contact maxon motor Australia Sydney office on +61 2 9457 7477.
This small brushless DC motor displays the advanced miniature and micro motor manufacturing techniques of maxon motor. So small are the details it is hard to capture the modifications and quality. The example pictured is a 10mm diameter DC motor and planetary gearbox fitted with an encoder for speed and position control.
What’s new? Sure there are a lot of small DC motors available now days however it’s in the detail that defines the difference between motors. Pictured is maxon motors newest planetary gearhead range that has been selected because of its stainless steel construction. The body and flange of the gearbox are one piece allowing the design engineers to not only create a mounting flange specific to the mounting footprint available in the application, it also allows maxon motor to orientate the gearhead flange with the motor cable exit. Enabling a shorter cable and neater cable looms. Laser welding of the motor flange is also a technology that is used to affix a customer specific drive pinion to the shaft. This gives the strongest possible power transmission coupling in these miniature sizes. maxon motor provide its customers with complete drawings and models for appraisal before samples are manufactured even for non-standard DC motor and gearhead assemblies like the shown example.
The new 10mm gearhead can supply torque levels up to 200mNm and can operate with input speeds up to 15,000rpm. Standard supply is with stainless steel ball bearings, it has efficiencies as high as 90% and weight as low as 6.7g.
Contact maxon motor Australia for further assistance Ph:+61 2 9457 7477.
Maxon motor have developed their most powerful DC motor positioning controller to date.
With a maximum power output of 2.1kW maxon are pleased to announce the release of the EPOS4 70/15 DC motor positioning controller. The CANopen controller with an EtherCAT option is presented in a robust metal housing. Suitable for both brushless and brushed DC motors the positioning controller is a cut above the rest due to its ease of operation and broad operative scope. The various digital and analogue connections can be configured and the unit is suitable for use with a wide variety of feedback systems. It can also be integrated into various master systems. This new product and many more will be showcased at the Hannover Messe in Germany from 23-27 April. For more information please contact maxon motor Australia tel. +61 2 9457 7477.
There are additional connectivity options with maxon’s positioning controller, the EPOS4.
The addition of an expansion board now allows maxon positioning controller, the EPOS4, to be integrated into any EtherCAT network as a slave using the CoE standard (CAN application layer over EtherCAT). The EtherCAT card developed for this use can be combined with the EPOS4 controllers in a housing, as well as with all EPOS4 modules. The benefits widen the applications where compact positioning controllers are needed, for example where short cycle times are important in synchronized multi-axis systems.
EPOS4 controllers are suitable for controlling both brushed and brushless DC motors. They are known for their high power density and excellent value for money. For more information about maxon’s EPOS controllers, please visit epos.maxonmotor.com or tel. +61 2 9457 7477.
This new combination of motor and gearhead can produce stable speeds over 120rpm with 10Nm applied.
With a very flat speed torque ratio the 40mm 170W brushless DC motor from maxon motor is suitable where minimal speed reduction is required under load. Particularly apt for process machinery or food production equipment where 24/7 continuous use regulated speed control is necessary. The pictured unit features a 2000qc incremental encoder and a 66:1 planetary gearhead. The output shaft is sealed and the unit can operate in small enclosures via conduction cooling. Brushless operation and ceramic components also give durability and robustness to the combination resulting in increased lifespan.
For more information please contact maxon motor Australia tel. +61 2 9457 7477.
An integrated approach in a decentralised world. maxon brushless DC motor with internal position controller and encoder.
Particularly suitable for manufacturing lines and process control applications the maxon integrated drive features a maintenance free combination of a 54 mNm 12, 24 and 48V brushless DC motor, 4000qc 3 channel incremental encoder with line driver (complimentary channels) and a full digital position and speed control unit. The position control is offered in two versions. One with internal processor and memory for pre-programming and standalone position control operation. This unit also has CANOpen master functionality. The second version is a CAN slave unit. Multiple integrated drives can then be daisy chained off the first and a complete standalone coordinated multi axis drive network can be configured. Alternatively the slave drives can be connected directly with a PLC or FPGA based master. The motor units are supplied with the powerful EPOS studio tool for easy gain configuration and motor tuning. Standardised IEC 61131-3 simplifies development and reduces costs. Planetary gearheads are available in a piece part system allowing adjustment for required application speed and torque.
Contact maxon motor Australia for further information Ph: +61 2 9457 7477.