Innovative smart motion control solutions designed for any application operating in any environment manage up to four intelligent and complex inertial platforms with high synchronization and accuracy. The standard off-the-shelf solution enables fast, high-performance implementation, significantly reducing the time to market.

Aug. 15, 2017 – Elmo Motion Control (Elmo), a leading provider of advanced motion solutions designed to make intelligent machines smarter, announces a comprehensive, ultra-small, rugged Inertial Platform Stabilization (IPS) solution. Elmo’s motion controllers, high-precision miniature servo drives, new embedded Software-in-the-loop (SIL) control capability and Elmo Application Studio II (EASII) software tool combine to create a ready-to-use solution that enables fast and easy implementation.

Elmo’s motion controller supports any feedback characteristic, including inertial measurement units (IMUs) and gyros, which significantly simplifies and shortens implementations, eliminating the necessity to receive gyroscope or IMU signals from the servo drives. Instead, the IMU signal (digital or analog) is received at the motion controller and processed using the customer’s specific position and velocity compensation algorithms. Communicating via fast EtherCAT (between 100 µs to 250 μs), the motion controller transmits calculated, synchronized corrective actions to the servo drives and motors, streamlining communication and resulting in precise, reliable and deterministic motion vital for highly sensitive inertial stabilization. Elmo’s IPS solution provides optimum stabilization to withstand environmental conditions with temperatures ranging from -40° C to +70° C (-40° F to 158° F), altitudes up to 40,000 feet and high mechanical shocks or intense vibrations up to 14 GRMS.

John McLaughlin, president, North America, Elmo Motion Control, said, “Our philosophy is to provide our customers with a standard, off-the-shelf and ready-to-use, smart motion solution that suits any application operating in any environment. Customers benefit from the field-proven, best-in-class, motion control hardware; embedded SIL control capability; and the EASII advanced software tool. This solution enables customers to avoid development of dedicated hardware and software and intensive, lengthy testing and verification processes. Elmo’s flexible solutions allow customers to use their own developed control algorithms to run their systems in real time. This state-of-the-art approach is demonstrated in the IPS solution—within a short time, upon installation and configuration, customers are running their systems with fully closed and stable loops with IMUs using their own bespoke system (and/or simulated) control software. One of Elmo’s most prominent customers commented on how perfectly the solution worked while saving them 8-12 months of struggling with new hardware and software.”

The complete solution includes the following components:

  • Platinum Lion (P-Lion) Multi-axes Motion Controller: Featherweight, miniature, advanced multi-axes motion controller designed for enhanced connectivity to attain unlimited performance, the P-Lion operates in any extreme, extended environment. Its features include unprecedented EtherCAT cycle times for multiple axes; digital and analog inputs and outputs for fast, responsive, direct controller-level interfacing with accelerometers, encoders, serial devices, IMUs and gyroscopes; and a user-friendly, flexible development environment. The P-Lion can manage inputs of up to four inertially stabilized platforms at less than 250 μs cycle times, with precise synchronization and jitter of less than 5 µs.
  • Gold Servo Drives: Any Elmo Gold servo drive can be used in the IPS solution, allowing flexibility in selecting the servo drive according to power (10 W – 65 KW), voltage (10 V – 900 V) or current (1 A – 650A). All Gold servo drives operate with any feedback and support any IPS application. An example is the light unit containing two ultra-compact and rugged Gold Bee servo drives, each with up to 80A/80V and capable of delivering more than 5 kW of power with very fast and innovative use of current, velocity and position loops. The drives comply with Safety, EMC, and Environmental standards and are certified for Safe Torque Off (IEC61800-5-2, STO), Safety Integrity Level 3 (SIL 3) and Performance Level e (PLe).
  • Software-in-the-loop (SIL) Control Capability: Since control design, kinematics and/or simulation code are often proprietary and classified, Elmo provides a “black box” environment where users can insert their external code (for example C or MATLAB) and execute it in the real-time kernel of the P-Lion (1.5GHz core). The customer’s design is processed to control the motion of the servo axes via the highly deterministic EtherCAT network.
  • Elmo Application Studio II (EASII) Software Tool [VIDEO]: Included in an Elmo hardware purchase, the industry-leading software tool creates and implements motion, enabling end users to configure programs and fully manage Elmo’s servo drives and motion controllers. EASII provides a flexible, user-friendly programming environment with programming in IEC 61131-3 or C/C++ that orchestrates the entire development process and quickly optimizes performance of the system. It provides accurate mechanical plant transfer functions; 1D, 2D and 3D error mapping and corrections; drive feedback emulation; corrective servo tuning and many more features and capabilities to ease and optimize application performance.

Elmo’s advanced motion control and servo technologies enhance overall accuracy, speed and throughput, and ensure fast, accurate, real-time responses for inertial stabilization. Used in commercial, industrial, agricultural, law enforcement and harsh environment applications, Elmo’s solutions can stabilize high-resolution cameras, observation systems, communication devices, satellite or ground mobile communication antennas, airplane Sat-Com internet and TV dishes, laser pods, etc. Inertial platforms are commonly found on shipboards, yachts, UAVs, drones, autonomous vehicles, ground mobile vehicles and armored vehicles.

Representatives from Elmo will be at booth number N10-453 at the DSEI Defense & Security Event Sept. 12-15, 2017 at ExCeL in London, and at booth number 2351 at the 2017 AUSA Annual Meeting & Exposition Oct. 9-11, 2017 at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center in Washington, D.C.