Multi-axis system enables centralised and distributed power supplies to be integrated

Published On: 17 December 2019

INMOCO has launched the MKD multi-axis system into the UK market, designed to simplify the control engineering required for plant and machinery with large numbers of driven axes.

The MKD was developed by US company Kollmorgen and at its heart has a central power supply and common DC bus that can be used to power axis drives. However distributed drives can also be connected to the MKD.

“This capability allows control systems to be developed with a hybrid part-centralised, part- distributed architecture,” explains INMOCO’s Gerard Bush. “as an example, perhaps the main drives for conveyors, presses and other high power functions are on the central power supply. Ancillary functions such as gates, grippers or sticker rollers that are separate from the primary workstation can then have their own distributed power supplies.”

The MKD thus offers many advantages, most obviously a reduction in wiring and intuitive architecture development, but also considerable space saving in the control cabinet and simplicity for maintenance, retrofitting and redevelopment.

The MKD multi-axis system is based on key components, the MKD-C power supply and the MKD-N servo drive. Axis modules from 6A to 48A are available, as are various supply modules. However, it can also be used with other Kollmorgen products such as AKD-N decentralised controllers.

Importantly, the MKD multi-axis system has been designed so that it can incorporate external supercap energy storage, so that braking energy is not lost from the system through heat dissipation. Instead brake energy is buffered, thus reducing the total energy consumption of the machine. Further, an energy storage system also enables a significant reduction of the peak load of the supply network, enhancing operation of machines in regions with poor power supply.

If needed, additional energy storage devices can be integrated with the MKD for short-term supply of the machine, as protection against mains power failure.

“Bush concludes: “The MKD makes the design and installation of control systems simpler, so will reduce costs. The space saving, ease of subsequent maintenance and development and energy efficiency will also reflect through to savings in total cost of ownership.”


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