One particular manufacturer is poised to leverage RF technology to eliminate physical contacts in rotary joints (also known as slip rings), an assembly for transmitting data and power across a rotating connection in the moving parts of industrial automation systems equipment.
Rotating tools spin in a way that wires cannot be used. In some applications where connections need to be made between something stationary and something spinning, a wire is not practical. So, they use electromechanical contacts made of brushes and filaments. Because these contacts are mechanical in nature, they are subject to:
- Electrical interference which can degrade the data transmission signal
- Limited bandwidth
With all this in mind, the manufacturer sought to replace the traditional contacts with a wireless 60 GHz data interface broadcasting commands quickly, at low cost, and with higher reliability. But they did not possess the essential RF knowledge base or expertise required to develop the solution independently. Nor did they have the projected time to build the solution from the ground up. With the cost of original R&D, prototypes, and testing – a full solution was beyond their reach. So, they turned to a longtime trusted partner, Analog Devices.