Baldor Announces New Motion-Control Software

January 07, 2002 by Jeff Shepard

Baldor (Fort Smith, AR) announced that it supplied three multi-axis motion-control systems to Premier Packaging to transfer and carton flow-wrapped chocolate bars. The system is controlled by the Mint-compatible NextMove-BX, a stand-alone motion controller that comes with I/O, allowing it to also handle the various sensors in this application.

Baldor used the Mint's multi-tasking capability to divide the transfer and carton process into five separate tasks: start paddles, stop paddles (for rejects), feed feedchain, lower lowerator and to manage the man-machine interface. The software tasks were then worked on, in parallel, by several application engineers, allowing a software prototype to be written and tested in less than a week. The design was then optimized and integrated with the hardware, including three brushless ac servo motors, three Flex drives, a NextMove BX motion controller and various sensors, and delivered to Premier Packaging for commissioning.

“This project demonstrates that it's possible to refurbish older mechanically based packaging machines easily," stated Peter Broughton, sales engineer with Premier Packaging. “In this instance, the machines were renovated with advanced electronic controls supporting software-based reconfiguration, for an outlay that is just a small fraction of the cost and time it would have cost to develop a new solution from scratch. For us, speed was an overriding objective, and Baldor's application engineering service played an important role in keeping the project on track.”