No stress cables for industrial robots

IGUS has developed the 3D energy chain "Triflex R" for robot producers and users designed to prevent corrugated hoses from kinks and tears.

According to the company, the multi-dimensional, movable robot chain is adjustable in length at any time to its modular construction, and achieves its high tensile strength using the "ball and socket" joint.

Individual elements are reportedly not connected to each other using extra steel cables similar, but with a simple connection like a trailer tow bar.

This ball and socket design is said to ensure mobility in every direction.

As it is possible to turn about +/- 10° per link in the chain, the company says this makes it much easier to guide the cables around difficult geometries.

Furthermore, the robot has a bending radius which is the same in every direction reducing the stress on the chain itself, and also on the cables, and hoses. The use of spring-rod modules generates a directed pre-tension, which reportedly makes it possible to create a system where the chain is suspended and doesn’t get caught up in the working area.

The "Triflex R" robot accessory package from igus includes well over 200 components. From large welding to small palletising robots, every industrial application can now be covered, the company claims.

The robot is available in three designs: a closed version said to protect the cables on rough applications, such as welding spatters, chips, and dirt; an "Easy" version in which the cables are pressed into the chain by handle; and the third is a "Light" version.