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Beckhoff to Showcase Transformational Automation Tech for Automotive at Battery Show 2022

The PC-based control pioneer will highlight intelligent transport systems, cabinetless control and more innovations to keep auto, EV and battery manufacturing moving forward.

XPlanar and XTS with its new NCT extension help automotive, EV and battery manufacturers solve new production challenges with emerging intelligent motion solutions from Beckhoff.
XPlanar and XTS with its new NCT extension help automotive, EV and battery manufacturers solve new production challenges with emerging intelligent motion solutions from Beckhoff.

Beckhoff will present automation technologies for flexible, smart machines in the automotive, electric vehicle (EV) and battery production sectors, along with several exciting first looks at upcoming solutions, at The Battery Show 2022. The trade show will mark the North American debut of No Cable Technology (NCT) for the eXtended Transport System (XTS) that enables end effectors directly on its movers and an advance preview of the MX-System, which empowers machine builders to eliminate electrical cabinets. Visitors to Beckhoff booth 2945 can explore how innovative automation makes powertrain and battery cell manufacturing more productive, efficient and sustainable from Sept. 13-15 at the Suburban Collection Showplace in Novi, Michigan.

New mechatronics tech revolutionizes auto manufacturing
Battery and electric motor production requires flexible, space-saving and scalable motion technologies. The XPlanar “Flying Motion” and XTS linear transport systems deliver competitive advantages in these applications. XPlanar’s magnetically levitating movers replace many functions handled by traditional material handling systems and robots. Additional XPlanar benefits include zero friction, automatic collision avoidance, path planning, anti-slosh, 360-degree rotation and zero wear on the system, improving uptime and the ROI equation. Ideal for assembly and material handling processes, the modular XTS propels movers with high dynamics, eliminates mechanical components and performs changeovers instantly via standard TwinCAT 3 automation software. 

As the next step in XTS evolution, NCT enables contactless, continuous power supply and synchronous real-time data transmission to the XTS movers. The hardware required for NCT is fully integrated into the motor module to preserve the system’s existing functions and compact design. With NCT, processing steps and high-quality control are possible for the first time directly on the mover during the running process, such as for stacking film for batteries. Sufficient power and ultra-fast communication with EtherCAT and the TwinCAT control system make the connection of sensors and actuators easy.

MX-System preview: the future of cabinetless machine design
For years, Beckhoff has been working to eliminate electrical cabinets to save space, installation effort and costs for machine builders, integrators and manufacturers. Many innovations in this area – for example, One Cable Automation with EtherCAT P, the AMP8000 distributed servo system and the C7015 ultra-compact Industrial PC, an IP65/67-rated machine controller – are available to accomplish this goal. Now, the MX-System offers a comprehensive, IP67-rated solution for machine-mountable control. 

For the first time in machine and system engineering, the MX-System enables automation solutions that are completely free of control cabinets. This Battery Show sneak peek will demonstrate how the MX-System provides a modular construction kit that combines all tasks and features of a machine’s control cabinet. These include energy supply, fuse protection and distribution, generation and monitoring of auxiliary voltages, sequence control with the inputs and outputs, control of motors and actuators as well as the connection level for field devices.

A complete solution for EV manufacturing
Beckhoff will also demonstrate its fully integrated, feature-rich EtherCAT and PC-based automation portfolio, from servo solutions of all sizes and wide-ranging I/O technologies to inherently scalable IPC hardware and TwinCAT software. As an end-to-end engineering and runtime platform, TwinCAT combines all functionality – PLC, IoT, motion control, machine vision, machine learning and more – into one universal software suite. This broad yet unified offering on display at The Battery Show 2022 is ideal to meet the automotive industry’s widespread digitalization initiatives to enhance production processes and plants, according to Jörg Rottkord, Industry Manager Automotive at Beckhoff Automation.

“In battery production and electromobility, manufacturers have many new opportunities as well as challenges to overcome. Open, flexible PC-based control continues to show its strength in these industries,” Rottkord said. “XPlanar and XTS with its new NCT extension offer valuable new tools for innovative automation in production and assembly. TwinCAT boosts implementations of cloud-connected, Industry 4.0 concepts throughout operations. We continue to work with many of the biggest machine builders, integrators and manufacturers in the automotive manufacturing industry to offer decisive competitive advantages for a sustainable, fast and open-technology transformation of this future-oriented approach to plant automation.”

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