Motoring a manufacturing revival for the food and beverage industry

Jun 10, 2021

ANCA Motion’s LinX® linear motor will be on display at the upcoming foodpro exhibition in Sydney, find out more about this innovative technology.

Written by Elan Anbanandam who is the Automation Product Manager at ANCA Motion

ANCA Motion’s innovative technology will be demonstrated at foodpro

Food and beverage is an important part of manufacturing, itself an important sector in rebuilding the Australian economy post-pandemic1.

Food is the biggest part of the local manufacturing industry. 35 of the top 100 Australian manufacturers (by revenue) are in food and beverage, and it makes up over a quarter of all manufacturing jobs and output2.

The sector is a net exporter, selling to over 200 markets and enjoying an enviable “clean and green” reputation globally for excellence3. It is vital and resilient, continuing to grow even through recent conditions for manufacturers described as “reminiscent of…the GFC4.” Food manufacturing is also viewed by some of our leading business people as a key area for accelerating the country’s economic recovery5.

To do the best at the important job ahead, the food and beverage sector — like every other — will need to find better ways of working. This includes investing in its people and processes, and adopting new technologies, such as flexible robotics, traceability solutions, increasingly digitalised supply chains, and new processing machinery.

One area that operators wanting to run their factories more efficiently can look to, are the motors behind processes like line distribution, filling, cutting and sorting.

Pneumatic cylinders are a tried-and-true solution, but they’re also noisy, and energy inefficient, and it can take hours to fine tune air pressure.

Tubular linear motors, on the other hand, can achieve very precise positional control and flexibility. Instead of being at one end or another, a linear motor can move to any single position within a stroke.

Newer actuation methods, such as tubular linear motors, are a way manufacturers can drive efficiency and productivity in their factory equipment. Such linear electrical motors are quicker and more accurate, allowing higher throughput at higher qualities over the same period, and use less energy. They have fewer moving parts so require less maintenance. And their servo drives are easily calibrated, meaning less time spent between line changes.

ANCA Motion’s new LinX® M-Series Linear Motor is an alternative to pneumatic, ballscrew, linear flatbed and other options6.

M-Series LinX® motors are highly dynamic, with velocities up to 10 m per second, acceleration over 30G, and are able to achieve a peak force of 1,200 N. The direct drive nature also means there is no wear and no backlash, a clear benefit over ballscrew options. The high-speed product also allows high repeatability across cycles, with position feedback accuracy of 50 um.

A typical payback period is between six and twelve months, with increased uptime and throughput and decreased maintenance quickly offsetting any cost difference versus pneumatics.

Its mounting is designed so it can work as a “drop-in” for existing pneumatic cylinders. Installation is made easier by the 1 mm air gap between the shaft and the forcer, which means a very relaxed tolerance requirement.

The M-Series has users worldwide in machine tools, electronics, packaging and other sectors, but its high level of ingress protection (IP66, easily upgraded to IP69K) make it particularly well suited to food and pharmaceutical manufacture and the requirement of regular washdowns. Each unit has a fully potted body, with magnets fully encased in a stainless-steel tube and tightly sealed using end caps and o-rings.

ANCA Motion’s linear motors were originally developed for sister company ANCA CNC Machines’ FX Linear and MX Linear machines. ANCA is a leader in CNC tool grinding technology, with a series of world firsts since beginning in 1974 and numerous awards acknowledging it as a leader in Australian industry for both its innovation7 and export8 achievements.

LinX® was designed and assembled in Australia, with a team of support engineers offering a high level of locally-specific expertise. International support is also available through a network of 125 support engineers in the United States, Mexico, Germany, Brazil, the United Kingdom, Turkey, and various Asian markets.

ANCA Motion’s LinX® linear motor will be on display at the upcoming foodpro exhibition in Sydney, at booth F34. Suitable for a range of applications, visitors to foodpro, which runs from 25th to 28th July, will be able to see a special demonstration of ANCA Motion technology exclusive to the show and the requirements of the food and beverage industry.

Click to learn more about the LinX® Linear Motor.

ANCA Motion is a division of the ANCA Group and designs and manufactures flexible control systems, specialising in high precision solutions for CNC machines. The hardware and software can be tailored to each OEMs requirements. ANCA Motion offers a range of solutions from turnkey automation control packages to single items such as digital servo drives, motion controllers, soft PLCs, CNCs, IO modules, motors, cables and cabinets.

foodpro is excited to have ANCA Motion exhibiting at the event in 2021, you can meet the team on the show floor 25-28 July 2021 at Sydney Showground – register to attend for free today.











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