NEW ENGINEERING GUIDE
13-Page Document with Full-Color Illustrations Gives Detailed Application Information
The String Potentiometer and String Encoder Engineering Guide is now available. With over 20 graphic images, the Engineering Guide helps designers, engineers, and technicians understand the strengths and weaknesses of this measurement technology. With this information, readers can specify and design the best displacement measurement solution for their application.
To obtain the String Potentiometer and String Encoder Engineering Guide, visit req080.
The Engineering Guide shows how linear, angular, rotary, 2D, and 3D displacements can be monitored with string potentioemters and string encoders.
CNC MACHINING ARTICLE
Precision Displacement Sensors Are Produced from Precision Haas CNC Machines
SpaceAge Control is one of the few displacement sensor manufacturers to machine its own parts. Recently Haas Automation's CNC Machining magazine ran a feature article on SpaceAge Control's machining operations. For a look into our machining operations and how they affect our products, read "Taking Control".
Running a CNC machining operation involves large investments in people and capital equipment. What are the benefits?
- increased precision and quality
- reduced costs and prices
- reduced lead times (and why we can ship many products the same or next day)
- increased product accuracy and lifetime due to tighter tolerances being applied
- customization and rapid prototyping capabilities
- superior performance relative to stamped, plastic, and non-precision machined parts
In-house control of CNC machining processes leads to ultra-small size and unparalled displacement sensor performance.
Displacement Sensors Measure Mars Exploration Rover Airbag Performance
Airbags used in the Mars Exploration Rover mission are the same type that Mars Pathfinder used in 1997. Airbags must be strong enough to cushion the spacecraft if it lands on rocks or rough terrain and allow it to bounce across Mars' surface at freeway speeds after landing. To add to the complexity, the airbags must be inflated seconds before touchdown and deflated once safely on the ground.
SpaceAge Control Series 160 displacement sensors were used to test the airbag performance to ensure the airbag compressive stroke did not exceed its design requirements. The flexible displacement cable made for easy installation with no special fixturing.
Each Rover uses four airbags with six lobes each, which are all connected. Connection is important, since it helps abate some of the landing forces by providing a damping mechanism to dissipate the impact energy. The fabric of the airbags is not attached directly to the rover; ropes that crisscross the bags hold the fabric to the Lander, which in turn holds the Rover. While in flight, the bags are stowed along with three gas generators that are used for inflation.
To learn more about the Rover, head to the NASA Mars Exploration Rover Mission Home Page.
Series 160 displacement transducers are used to test the airbags that will one day decelerate the Mars Exploration Rover.
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