Engineering Notes by Oriental Motor

Welcome to Oriental Motor's "Engineering Notes" Blog:

Products and technology are only valuable when coupled with skilled people and services to support them. ORIENTAL MOTOR U.S.A. CORP. has dedicated over 33 years to establishing a service and support system to better serve customers. It is our goal to provide the best product and service from the design phase, through the sale and beyond.

Our blog will feature:

  • Introductions to New Products and Technology
  • Application Examples, Improvements and Problem Solving
  • Tips and Recommendations for Motor Selection, Installation and Use

Understanding Stepper Motor Vibration

Posted by Johann Tang on Sep 30, 2019 8:33:27 PM

Stepper motors vibrate.  It's what they do.

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Topics: Stepper Motors, Stepper Motor Drivers, Vibration Control, Smooth Drive, Motor Sizing, VIDEOS, Gearheads

Incremental vs Absolute Systems

Posted by Johann Tang on Sep 12, 2019 3:57:57 PM

The terms "absolute" and "incremental" comes up frequently in the world of position control.  The exact meaning changes according to the context they are used in.  For example, absolute and incremental motion can refer to the type of motion done by the motor either by relating it to the absolute home position or the last known position.  Absolute and incremental feedback can also refer to the type of feedback device being used with the motor.  In this blog post, we will focus on the feedback system and hopefully clarify some differences for you.

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Topics: Stepper Motors, Absolute Positioning, Alphastep Hybrid Control, Linear & Rotary Actuators, VIDEOS

The Power of the AlphaStep Family

Posted by Johann Tang on Aug 28, 2019 2:37:43 PM

The word, "AlphaStep", describes Oriental Motor's patented Hybrid Control technology, which offers improved stepper motor performance by combining the best of both open-loop and closed-loop technology.  First introduced in 1998 as the AS Series, the AlphaStep Hybrid Control technology ushered in a new age of stepper motors that can emulate servo performance at a lower cost.  Over the years, we have improved the AlphaStep Hybrid Control technology with 2 major advancements to close the gap between stepper motors and servo motors further.

This post explains the unique technologies offered within the AlphaStep family of products then summarizes the numerous integrated options available.  It also serves as a website navigation guide.  

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Topics: Stepper Motors, Stepper Motor Drivers, Absolute Positioning, Alphastep Hybrid Control, Linear & Rotary Actuators, VIDEOS, Gearheads, Software, Network

Preventive vs Predictive Maintenance: Which is More Efficient?

Posted by Johann Tang on Aug 20, 2019 2:58:24 PM

Along with the advancement of industrial technology, the method of maintaining motion control components of a machine, such as motors, drives, and sensors, has also evolved.  The most common method of maintaining a machine after a failure has occurred was the traditional method.  Realizing the need for improvement, maintenance personnel started to estimate life and replace motion control components before they fail.  More recently, with the advancement of IIoT (Industrial Internet of Things) and real-time availability of status data, another method was born.  While the two newer methods have the same goal in eliminating machine downtime, only one does it efficiently.

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Topics: Stepper Motors, Stepper Motor Drivers, Linear & Rotary Actuators, VIDEOS, Network

How Easy Is It to Make a Robot? (VIDEO)

Posted by Johann Tang on Jul 19, 2019 8:31:19 PM

Robot adoption is increasing in many industries due to global efforts in reducing long term costs, maintaining quality, and freeing up time for humans to do "human" tasks.  For example, by using a robot to clean floors or restock shelves in a supermarket, human employees can spend more time helping or selling to their customers.  A company can either tap into this robotic trend by buying ready-made robots, or by making their own with less cost.  If engineering resources are limited, selecting the right components can reduce the difficulty and time for the build.

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Topics: Stepper Motors, Stepper Motor Drivers, Robotics, Absolute Positioning, Alphastep Hybrid Control, Linear & Rotary Actuators, Motor Sizing, VIDEOS, Gearheads, Software

Improving Stop Accuracy for Start/Stop Conveyors (VIDEO)

Posted by Johann Tang on May 7, 2019 1:32:29 PM

Are you using motors for a start/stop conveyor or similar application?  While AC motors are a common choice for conveyors, there is a unique speed control motor solution available that could improve stop accuracy as well as reduce footprint and cost of machine designs.

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Topics: Conveyor, AC Motors, Stepper Motors, Stepper Motor Drivers, Speed Control, VIDEOS

Simple Method to Limit Motor Operation Range for Robotics Safety (VIDEO)

Posted by Johann Tang on Apr 1, 2019 2:09:05 PM

In the world of industrial robotics, there are several types of robots typically offering multiple axes of motion for tasks such as parts assembly, material handling, or pick and place operations.  These include articulated robots, cartesian/gantry robots, SCARA robots, and Delta robots.  Variations of end effectors such as grippers, welders or part rotators can be mounted on the end of the arm to perform different tasks.  Depending on number of axes or load capacity, costs can easily add up.  Limiting the operation range for these robotic axes of motion is an easy way to prevent costly problems or safety issues later.

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Topics: Stepper Motors, Robotics, Absolute Positioning, Alphastep Hybrid Control, VIDEOS, Software

Introduction to MEXE02 Support Software (VIDEO)

Posted by Johann Tang on Mar 12, 2019 7:30:00 AM

The MEXE02 support software is a universal motion control and monitor software used with many products from Oriental Motor, such as the stepper motor drivers from AZ Series, AR Series, and RK2 Series, or brushless DC motor drivers from BLE2 Series and BX2 Series.  This post is useful for first-time users to gain a quick understanding of the software and what it can do.


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Topics: Stepper Motors, Linear & Rotary Actuators, Speed Control, VIDEOS, BLDC Motors, Software, Servo Motors

Flexible Mounting Options for Compact Stepper Motor Drivers (VIDEO)

Posted by Johann Tang on Feb 1, 2019 11:00:00 AM

A driver is a must-have for any stepper motor.  In a stepper motor system, a driver controls how the motor operates based on signals received from the controller.  It is responsible for sending current through various phases in a stepper motor and also regulates the motor current (torque) and step resolution.  With recent trends of minimizing machine footprint, finding space to install drivers could be challenging.

Standard Stepper Motor System Configuration

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Topics: Stepper Motors, Stepper Motor Drivers, VIDEOS

Simplified Position Control for Index Tables Operating in Absolute Coordinates (VIDEO)

Posted by Johann Tang on Jan 4, 2019 7:56:17 PM

With recent trends focusing on improving engineering efficiency, many products have been developed to specifically help shorten design cycles for machine automation.  Part of improving efficiency is making products easier to use, so additional time and resources can be spent elsewhere.  This post describes an example of a product feature that can make index table applications less complex to manage.

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Topics: Stepper Motors, Absolute Positioning, Linear & Rotary Actuators, VIDEOS, Software