igus recently developed a material that meets the new challenges for its latest generation of motor and servo cables. In the test, it was able to withstand a bend radius of 7.2 x d over 45 million strokes. As the trend for variable frequency drives (VFDs) is moving towards more compact drives with the same or higher power and extremely high switching accuracies of the frequency converters, when selecting the cable, the user not only has to pay attention to the right combination of a number of cores and cross-sections, but also to the electrical specifications of the cable.
Smaller, plastic-insulated round power connectors, such as, the M16 or M18 are being used more and more for the new motor designs to be able to exploit their full advantages. The more compact design of the motors can result in higher temperatures within the system, compared to larger ranges of the same motors. The result is that the cable heats up via the connector contacts. If the insulation material of the cable does not withstand the elevated temperatures in the long term, short circuits can occur inside the cable and in the vicinity of the connectors, which in the worst case can lead to fires. Therefore, the insulation material plays a new central role in the selection of the correct servo and motor cables. The new material – in contrast to other common materials – meets the increased thermal requirements of the latest motor generations.