This year's Hannover Messe underlined its commanding position as the only showcase to feature the entire industrial supply chain. Some 180 000 visitors - nearly 50 000 of whom came from abroad - were on hand to see exhibits staged by 5040 exhibitors across a total display area of 151 500 m². These figures testify to an excellent outcome for Hannover Messe 2004. The ratio of approx. 1,2 visitors per square metre of rented space was much higher than in recent years, greatly exceeding the organisers' expectations.
Festo once again was part of this world-class event, exhibiting its latest technologies. Several factors are believed to have contributed to the popularity of the three Festo stands, including the release of important new products, informative displays and entertaining concepts.
One such drawcard came in the form of a fluidic muscle-driven tricycle. Showing how the innovative pneumatic actuator can be used to create continuous rotary movement through a ratchet system, this idea hinted at the many new applications being unlocked by the unique advantages of the fluidic muscle. Particular interest was expressed in the deployment of this technology in explosion-proof areas, to drive rotary actuators without an electrical interface.
In addition to the 6500 m³ main stand, and the Festo Didactic display featuring Tron-X, a third Festo stand was entirely dedicated to the automotive industry. Here, the release of the CLR clamp created a stir, with its clever integration of linear and swivel clamping functions. With a purely linear stroke from 32 mm diameter upwards and freely selectable swivel direction that can be easily adjusted, unhindered access to almost any clamping point is provided. In addition to freeing up room in space-critical applications, the CLR offers easy maintenance and long service life.
Festo also added a low-cost, compact unit to its actuator range through the release of the MTR-DCI electrical actuator, featuring integrated power electronics and a controller for on-board intelligence. Doing away with the need for a control cabinet and airconditioning to protect the electronics means this product promises significant space savings in the workplace. Integration of the controller also considerably reduced wiring requirements - only one voltage supply and one fieldbus connection or multipin are required to operate the MTR-DCI.
Other new releases favoured by the public included a larger flow-rate service unit - increased from 1 to 2 inches - and new control hardware in the form of the CPX-FEC intelligent valve terminal. This was in line with an overall focus on decentralised control intelligence in the process industry. Being relatively new in the supply of flow sensors, Festo introduced several sensors in its SFE1 range that are suitable for application in flow monitoring during workpiece feed, leakage detection in production and leak testing of end products.
"The South African market can expect a series upgrade on our MS range of service units that will add local intelligence in the form of new sensors added to these units," reveals technical manager, Adrian Buddingh. "In addition to a flow sensor, the MS 6 series will have a level sensor for detecting condensate build-up and a differential pressure sensor for picking up dirt and dust."
|Tel:||08600 FESTO (33786)|
|Fax:||08794 FESTO (33786)|
|Articles:||More information and articles about Festo|
© Technews Publishing (Pty) Ltd | All Rights Reserved