Bosch Rexroth Reveals New Integrated Measuring System for Rail Configurations

April 30, 2020 by Alessandro Mascellino

Bosch Rexroth has unveiled a new integrated measuring system (IMS) for rail system configurations.

(IMS) for Rail System Configurations

The new IMS-I promises high positioning accuracy in contaminated work environments as well as repeat accuracy performance as accurate as a glass scale. Able to record measuring distances of up to 4,500 mm, the IMS-I systems can be deployed on the same rail independently of each and have a repeat positioning accuracy of 0.25 µm.


Rexroth IMS-I: Key Features

Travel measuring systems are designed to circumvent calculation accuracy issues caused by magnetic and electric fields disrupting sensor operation or caused by cooling lubricants and chips used in rail systems.

The new IMS-I by Rexroth is built to maximize both integration capabilities and calculation accuracy. The device features a high-precision pitch etched into a steel strip, and its scale is built into the profiled rail itself.

As a result, the IMS-I can attain repeat accuracy levels attain 0.25 µm, and has a scale precision of +/- 3 µm/m.

To enhance security and safety of operation, the IMS-I is also IP 67-certified and protected by a welded stainless steel strip across the entire sectional length, making the system capable of resisting impacts and vibrations of up to 10 g.


ims rail

Rexroth’s IMS-I. Image used courtesy of Rexroth.


Moreover, to improve the system's tolerance of chips, dust, dirt, and contamination, Rexroth has provided it with an optimized distance between the sensor and scale. Since it does not require external attachment parts to function, it is also possible to deploy the IMS-I in setups within installations requiring very little space.

Finally, the IMS-I comes preconfigured to allow direct connection to IndraDrive servo drives from Rexroth and other common servo drive components available on the market. 


Integrated Measuring System: A Wider Trend?

Systems such as Rexroth’s IMS-I feature both high levels of accuracy and resilient designs, making them ideal for a series of applications.

Apart from rail systems, IMS can be deployed in a variety of scenarios, including applications requiring synchronizing ram positioning laser cutters, or plunger units in presses, and extracting PET bottles at high speeds.

Integrated Measuring Systems can also assist with woodworking tasks and with 3D printer processes that produce abrasive dust. Because of their versatility and precision, these systems could potentially grow in use in the wider automation industry.

At this stage, however, Bosch Rexroth is at the forefront of IMS development, with no substantial competitors present in this market.

While it is hard to assess whether this industry leader will start a new trend with the IMS-I or not, the validity of this system coupled with its versatility and features surely makes this trend an interesting one to follow.


What do you think about integrated measuring systems and their future in the automation industry?