Harmonic Drive Launches Mini Actuator with Integrated Servo Drive

Image: Harmonic Drive LLC

August 27, 2019      

PEABODY, Mass. – Harmonic Drive LLC, which develops high-precision motion control systems, this week announced new FHA mini actuators that include an integrated servo drive. The FHA-C Mini series eliminates the need for an external drive, and greatly improves wiring, while also retaining high-positional accuracy and torsional stiffness in a compact housing, the company said.

The compact actuators help deliver high torque with “exceptional accuracy and repeatability,” Harmonic Drive said in a statement. As part of the family, an integrated servo drive version utilizing CANopen communication is now available. Since the device communicates via CANopen, only four wires are needed: CANH, CANL, +24DC, and 0VDC. In addition, a single-turn 14-bit (16384 cpr) gear output sensing encoder has been integrated, along with a single-turn 15-bit (32768 cpr) motor input sensing encoder. Harmonic Drive, an RBR50 2019 honoree, said this provides a true absolute encoder that does not require a battery within 360-degrees of rotation of the output.

Additional features

The FHA-C Mini includes an integrated servo drive. Image: Harmonic Drive LLC

Harmonic said its engineering team incorporated more features and capabilities without greatly impacting the size and mass of the actuator. Key features of the FHA-C Mini include:

  • Actuator + integrated servo drive utilizing CANopen communication
  • 24VDC nominal +7-28VDC supply voltage range
  • Single cable with only four wires needed: CANH, CANL, +24VDC, 0VDC
  • Zero backlash
  • Dual absolute encoders
  • Panel mount connectors with four exit options
  • Output sensing encoder 14-bit (16384 cpr) resolution
  • Input sensing encoder 15-bit (32768 cpr) resolution
  • Control modes including torque, velocity, and position control, CSP, CSV, CST
  • Harmonic Drive HDL software

The series was produced at Harmonic Drive LLC in Peabody. The company said it will be showing off the drive at RoboBusiness 2019, held Oct. 1-3, 2019, in Santa Clara, Calif.

For more details on the FHA-C Mini, download this product brochure.