Belden Universal, a global manufacturer of custom universal joints and specialized mechanical power transmission products, implemented critical design upgrades to its universal joints for pick and place (Delta) robots. The redesign project was necessitated by industry demand (from both OEMs and end users) for space-saving components supporting heavier payloads.
The stainless-steel component is based on Belden’s hybrid design, combining the higher torque capacity of a pin + block joint with the needle bearing's ability to continuously operate at high speeds with low friction. It mitigates corrosion issues, contamination, burnout and joint seizure.
The redesign project concentrated on the joint’s center section. It utilizes stronger, precision needle-roller bearings with larger outside diameters, making it capable of supporting applications with larger payloads and higher torque requirements. Torsional backlash was minimized according to stringent specifications. Modifications to the yoke’s ear profile resulted in a higher, 55° angle, further supporting precise positioning and orientation of the robotic arms. With an overall length of just 48mm, the new universal joint delivers a compact, space-saving design at high strength, speed and flexibility.