ARCwire -- Siemens Automation and Drives (A&D) is introducing a new interpolation method for handling processes that is integrated in the Simotion motion control system. The 'path interpolation' technology object reportedly reduces the load on the system and increases the performance of a machine. Only one controller is needed for all machine functions. The technology object can be used with the Simotion Top Loading software library. This represents a further improvement in the engineering effort required.
On the system side, the path-interpolation technology object supports linear, circular, and polynomial interpolation on a main plane (2D) and in space (3D). The path movement is directly controlled and monitored by the Simotion controller. This enables cycle times of over 180 picks per minute in the case of Delta 2 and Delta 3 kinematics. Moreover, the most important standard kinematics of cartesian gantries can be implemented by means of Scara robots, roll pickers, and robots with articulated arms. From the software point of view, path definition in the case of Simotion is therefore completely independent of the selection and parameterization of the kinematics. When a machine has to be retrofitted or modified, only the kinematics-related parameters have to be updated.
If such extreme cycle times are not needed, the CPU power thus released can be used for other functions. This can include the automation of several handling modules with one CPU. Due to the object-oriented approach, several instances of the path-interpolation technology object can be used simultaneously and several handling devices can be controlled at the same time. With the Simotion Top Loading standard library, the integrated interpolation method reduces the effort required for engineering and programming.