Hexapod & Drone: Industrial & research applications for motion simulation

  • June 24, 2016
  • PI Vision
  • Case Study

June 24 2016 – Hexapods are 6 DOF motion systems that derive 6-axis movement (XYZ, Pitch, Yaw) from actuators placed in parallel between a top and bottom platform. Available in a variety of sizes with bases ranging from 100mm to 1m, different stiffness configurations, and supportive of loads from 2 kg to 1,000+ kg, PI hexapods share two common traits – precision and versatility– as seen in a new test of a drone-mounted camera on PI’s H-840 hexapod as it goes thru a series of motions.

Simulation and Compensation of Motion, CIPA: Certificate of Registration of Vibratory Apparatus

Complex patterned motion generation is becoming increasingly important for applications, such as vehicular simulation and airborne platform simulation and test.  However, many other emerging fields of structural and active mechanical subsystem analysis, validation, and design can also benefit from flexible, six-degree-of-freedom motion simulator mechanisms capable of generating specific motion patterns in real time. Hexapods are suitable to provide highly dynamic motion, but also sub-micrometer position resolution and stability. H-840 hexapod is CIPA certified for 6-axis image stabilization capabilities of cameras. The versatility, not unlike the motion range provided by human hand, is obtained thru the parallel kinematic design and the 6-axis vector motion controller that provides smooth vectorised motion. A randomized, used-defined pivot point (center of rotation) that can be changed on the fly by one software command allows for increased versatility. Software for alignment and tracking is included, as well as for defining trajectories and sinusoidal curves with high accuracy. Additional software tools avoid collisions with surroundings in restricted workplaces.

For the highest dynamics linear motors are used, such as in the H-860 hexapod, for high load applications, roller screw drives with torque motors are available and for mid-level load and speed, ball screw drives are used, such as in the cases of the H-840.

Hexapod applications include motion simulation, industrial production, precision machining, automotive industry, image stabilization test equipment, vibration simulation, precision positioning and alignment of opto-mechanical components.

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