The Linear chain – an innovative element in drive technology.
Linear Chains are an alternative to other linear drive technologies when space is limited. In drive technology, loads are usually moved by pulling or pushing; Linear Chain can do both, thanks to the locking, rigid design of the links.
How the Linear Chain works:
Consisting of specially formed, high-precision mechanical chain links which interlock securely, the special feature of the Linear Chain (as opposed to a “normal” chain) is that it works in both directions – it can pull and push.
In the drive housing of the Linear Chain is a gear wheel which engages the chain and moves it link by link – both forwards and backwards. The chain itself has two loose ends: the load to be moved is attached to one end. The other end can be guided freely, and is usually rolled up in a storage device.
This saves an enormous amount of space, the main advantage of the Linear Chain over “normal” linear drive options.
How does Linear Chain push?
A pushing force is exerted on the chain links by the drive element, usually an electric motor. The unique design of the links means the shoulders of each chain link ‘lock’ into place, pushing against one another to form a rigid unit, with which they can lift or push the load.
How does Linear Chain pull?
Like a normal chain, the links can be wound up in one direction and stored in a magazine, thus saving space. Paired with a drive element, the chain is pulled into that magazine, exerting a force on the load to be pulled.
How is the Linear Chain guided?
You have two possibilities: either it runs over a sliding surface, or in a guide rail. The choice of guide depends on the pushing force, the stroke length and the speed of movement, and your available space. Guidance is necessary from a certain stroke length to prevent the Linear Chain from buckling, for safety reasons.