Gears the CSF Mini, new lightweight contender

Smaller size but greater capacity

High precision drive technology expert Harmonic Drive has responded to the demand for compact, lightweight and high capacity gears by creating the new CSF-Mini series. Developed with versatile output options, the range opens up exciting new applications in the robotics industry, where gearing technology is a hugely important factor. The CSF-Mini will be used in precise positioning applications, particularly in sectors like factory automation and medical technology manufacturing.

The gearboxes combine a high precision Harmonic Drive HFUC-Mini Gear Unit with a compact four point output bearing. This special design has been developed with a clear understanding of customer requirements and can be adapted to most third party motors and motor manufacturers. The new series enhances the range provided by Harmonic Drive UK and provides an innovative design solution to the increased demand for lightweight and compact gears. Compared to Harmonic Drive PMG gearboxes, the CSF-Mini use a higher capacity component set as well as an improved output shaft and is mounted in a much smaller housing. As well as its small size and low weight, it also offers improved bearing capacity, zero backlash, high tilting stiffness and excellent repeatability.

“The feedback we've had so far has been incredibly positive,” explained Graham Mackrell, managing director of Harmonic Drive UK. "Modern robotic systems require extremely compact precision gears that combine low weight and a high capacity output bearing, resulting in robots that are versatile, accurate and have the ability to manage high payloads.

“The CSF-Mini has applications in all areas of modern mechanical engineering where precision positioning is required. Interestingly, it has practical applications in research institutions and hospitals, where robots are used for medical instrumentation control. The gear technology delivers the high accuracy and maximum rigidity required to achieve precise, fluid movements, all in a lightweight, compact design."

Already far superior to its competitors, the CSF-Mini also has a 'big brother' to be launched next year. The CSF-LW is an additional line in Harmonic Drive's lightweight gearbox range which will complement the standard gear. The CSF-Mini offers a torque capacity of 0.2Nm up to 28Nm, whereas the larger CSF-LW runs from 16Nm up to 2510Nm. “The technological development of the robotics industry and its dynamic applications in the medical industry continue at a rapid pace," continued Mackrell. "But we are ready for the challenge and more than capable of meeting the future needs of our customers.”

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