Auburn, MA – PI, a leading manufacturer of hexapods, air bearings, systems, advanced motion controllers, piezo and nanopositioning equipment, announces new applications for hexapod positioning systems, based on the Stewart Platform principle. Addressing all six degrees of freedom means that hexapods can provide linear motion in X, Y, Z as well as rotary motion in Theta-X, Theta-Y, and Theta-Z (pitch, yaw, roll).
Image Credit: PI (Physik Instrumente) LP
Advantages of the Hexapod Stewart Platform Design Principle
The superiority of the Stewart Platform's parallel kinematic design over conventional 5-axis and 6-axis linear and rotary stages stems from its unique feature of having just one common moving platform, sustained by six closed-loop actuators. This design ensures unified dynamic performance across all 6 axes, a sharp contrast to conventional stacked multi-axis stages, where each stage experiences varying loads, and the lowermost motor must drive not just its own platform's weight but also the mass of up to five additional stages stacked on it. Furthermore, the balanced structure of the hexapod Stewart Platform facilitates a substantial central opening and negates the requirement for trailing cables, as it only requires two fixed external connections for power and data, which are connected to the stationary lower platform.
Hexapod Motion Controller / Hexapod Simulation Software
Drawing upon years of expertise in parallel kinematic motion systems, PI's hexapod 6-axis motion controllers and hexapod software are developed to provide a user-friendly programming experience. They permit the user to modify the center of rotation with a single command and come equipped with built-in advanced alignment functions. PI's hexapod motion simulation software pre-calculates the workspace boundaries and load capacity, thereby guaranteeing the selected hexapod can withstand the applied loads, forces, and torques in your specific use case.
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