Due to a maximum level of performance and dynamics, the AX5000 range of Beckhoff servo amplifiers is perfectly suited to meet demanding positioning tasks in single and multiple axes applications. Installation inside the electrical cabinet is simplified by the compact design and simple but reliable mounting system "AXBridge". Powerful, but at the same time compact, Weidmüller components have made a contribution towards achieving this objective, because Beckhoff placed its faith in Weidmüller as a competent design-in partner for connection technology during the development phase of the AX5000 series.
Greater performances, more compact design sizes
Weidmüller has already been able to provide Beckhoff with an innovative connection solution during a past project in the form of its 30-pole, pluggable connection level BL-I/O 3.5 LED. "The BL-I/O combines a complete sensor-actuator distribution solution with eight I/O channels including power supply and integrated LED status indication on a surface area equivalent to the size of a postage stamp of just 35 x 20 mm," explains product manager Gerd Richter. Moving the functions from the device to the connector led to significant savings in space and even reduced the amount of wiring required.
During the planning phase for the AX5000 servo amplifiers Beckhoff followed its ambition of setting new standards in drive engineering by introducing an innovative concept. As a result, the demands placed on all of the components being integrated were correspondingly high - and the connection technology was no exception.
Weidmüller has already convinced us of their expertise with their connection level BL-I/O, which offers a high-level of functionality in conjunction with a compact design. For that reason we asked Weidmüller to provide us with a suitable solution for the connection technology to be used in our planned AX5000 series.
The connection concept that Weidmüller created for Beckhoff includes the BL-I/O to connect external sensors as well as the pluggable power and performance connector SV/BVZ 7.62 HP for connecting the power supply and the motor connection.
"In that respect Beckhoffs' ambitious objectives regarding performance, reliability, safety, and flexibility fitted quite well our own plans as we had just begun to develop a high-performance version of our proven pluggable connector system SV/BVZ 7.62," Gerd Richter from Weidmüller says. With the creation phase running in parallel to the AX5000 series it was possible for the Beckhoff specifications to flow into the development of Weidmüller's new high-performance capable, pluggable connector variant. Against this background the pluggable connector system fully fulfils market requirements.
With up to 40 % less wiring requirements and saving up to 50 % space compared to conventional field wiring solutions, the sensor/actuator socket block BL-I/O represents an innovative solution for decentralising I/O electronics.
Cooperation as a formula for success
"During the design-in phase we exchanged ideas intensively with Beckhoff regarding the different technical challenges," says Gerd Richter from Weidmüller, thinking back on the successful cooperation. "This made it possible for us to address the technical and design requirements at quickly and make our contribution towards an optimum solution. The close level of cooperation was profitable for both sides, in particular with regard to EMC compatibility and UL approval."
In these areas Weidmüller was solely responsible for thinking through and implementing the solutions to the special requirements placed on the connection technology. For instance, the EMC shield connecting element integrated in the power and performance connector was optimised by Weidmüller to such a degree that its 30° inclination facilitates slimmed-down cable routing.
That makes possible the high installation density of the AX5000 series. With regard to the UL-compliant design Weidmüller, agreed on a detailed approach with UL to assess the pin header in accordance with factory wiring conditions, and the socket block in accordance with field wiring conditions. Weidmüller's service and support package is rounded off by an individual configuration option for the connection components.
"The result of the cooperation is that Weidmüller was able to supply us with a complete solution for direct integration in the device," Frank Sieweke from Beckhoff is pleased to relate. "This enabled us to concentrate fully on our own competencies in developing the AX5000 series and allowed us to introduce an innovative concept for drive engineering onto the market."