New Way® Air Bearings Launch New Vacuum Pre-Loaded Air Bearing Product Line
Aston PA, April 2003. New Way® Vacuum Preloaded (VPL) Air Bearings provide machine designers with the potential to combine X and Y linear motion and theta rotation all on one flat surface, eliminating the need to stack several separate stages. VPLs allow stages to be built that are kinematically correct and not over-constrained. By minimizing the stack height, angular and thermal errors are also minimized.
Vacuum Preloaded Air Bearings are designed to float on a thin film of air while simultaneously being sucked down by vacuum. This provides all the benefits of zero friction motion while the inherent stiffness provided by the vacuum avoids the need for more cumbersome preloading arrangements. The result is an efficient, stable, and low profile solution for multi-axis motion applications.
VPLs are most frequently run against granite, ceramics, and non-corrosive or coated metals. They are mounted with flexures that use self-aligning gimbals to provide height adjustment and stiffness without friction or hysteresis. A 12″ diameter V.P.L. can have 700 lbs of pre-load and 500 lbs of load capacity.
New Way® VPL air bearings and flexure mounts are available as standard, modular units directly from stock. Custom VPLs are also available. Large custom VPLs can be manufactured integral to other structural components (like a Z stage) or they can be bonded in place. Custom VPLs can be made in ceramic, metal, or composite materials.
New Way delivers the total air bearing product starting at their website www.newwaybearings.com which includes the specifications of the full product range, design and installation guides, mounting hardware, air specifications, technical support, and a full range of accessories. For more information, contact Tim Claffey at 610.494.6700.
New Way Machine Components, Inc. is the recognized leader in the design, manufacture, and sale of modular air bearing products. Founded in 1994, New Way is located in Aston, PA, USA, just fifteen minutes from Philadelphia International Airport.