Groschopp News & Press

Groschopp – Pioneer in matters of Servo-Technology

24.09.2018

Whether for high-voltage circuit breakers, X-ray equipment, bottling plant or rotisseries: the demands placed on every drive technology for machines, equipment or devices are as versatile as their applications. Groschopp develops a broad product range of motors, reducer gears and controllers for various industrial branches. The company looks back at its history of many years which is marked especially with innovations in the area of electric- and servo-motors.

The history of the electric motor goes back as far as 1834, when Moritz Hermann von Jacobi developed the first electric drive for a boat in St. Petersburg, and the electric motor experienced a steady development ever since: they have become more high-powered, more intelligent and more efficient. The company Groschopp AG Drives & More in Viersen is considered to be one of the foremost technological pioneers in this area.

It all began in 1922 with the production of electric motors in the company Alfred Oemig in Saxony. However, the sign of the times pointed towards a new beginning after WWII, when in 1948 the EMW Electric-Motors-Precision-Works Groschopp& Co. GmbH was founded in Mönchengladbach-Rheydt. After some years, in 1954, the company moved to its present location in Viersen. The company continued to expand, and in 1967 it acquired the company Bresges Electric-Motors GmbH. Production- and office-space had to be expanded during the 1980s due to its successful business. In 1994, Groschopp's subsidiary Berkmanns Drives GmbH was founded for the production of small batch series and special motor designs.

Since the beginning of 2000, the company trades under the name Groschopp AG – Drives & More. In the same year, the company Groschopp B.V. with its present location in Hardinxveld  in the Netherlands was founded, followed in 2002 by the company Groschopp SARL in Paris, and in 2006 by a further subsidiary in China. The Groschopp Sales Company mbH was founded in 2008.

Groschopp participates in various research projects and constantly develops new and efficient industrial drive concepts. The company is also involved in the area of 'E-Mobility' for the past few years. In its history, the company proved to be successful time and again, especially in the servo-technology sphere, to present innovative and unique products on the market.

Tailored to suit every budget: The'Volksservo-motor BGK'

With the BGK-motor, also called 'Volksservo', the company developed an electronically commutated DC-motor with excellent true running characteristics in the mid-1990s. It boasts a large controlling range even at a maximum torque, beginning at low rotational speed. Servo-motors were very expensive in those days, and the crucial factor in determining the price was first and foremost the sensor system for the motor.

That is why Groschopp developed and produced inhouse such a drive in order to offer customers a substantially more cost-effective servo-drive compared to other models.

The description 'Volksservo' was 'borrowed' from the 'Volkswagen'-emblem, because the new servo motor made by Groschopp suited every budget. The combination of motor and servo-controller conquered the market in no time. The BGK is a milestone in the history of the company Groschopp AG: it marked the entry into the servo market and opened up new ideas and solutions for customers.

High Power Density and Positioning Accuracy: 'Black Panther'®

In 2004, Groschopp introduced the model range 'Black Panther'® (EGK) on the market. At that time, the company was a pioneer in matters concerning servo-motors, due to the EGK-motors featuring an exceptionally high power density, as well as a high efficiency factor and a high positioning accuracy.

At the same time, the method of winding a coil around the teeth of a stator stack was developed which represented quite an important step in the winding technology at that time. The advantage of using this technology is that winding heads can be kept particularly small, so that less heat is generated and the efficiency factor is enhanced as a result.

The'Black Panther'® is an electronically-commutated servo-motor which is now produced in its 'third generation'. By optimising the active core elements like stator, rotor and magnets, as well as using the modern single-tooth winding, the company was able to increase the power density of the model range by factor 2 to 3 compared with conventional  High-End-servo-motors.These motors, often described as 'three-phase-synchronous servo-motors' due to their optimised sinusoidal current feed, generating during its operation a very constant and even torque when combined with a servo-controller. The brushless AC-servo-motors produced by Groschopp AG are rounded up by these compact and dynamic motors of the model range EGK 'Black Panther'®.

Robust andhygienic: The Silver-Line-model range

Groschopp was one of the first manufacturers of servo-motors who, in 2006/2007, introduced a drive unit completely made of stainless steel on the market. This robust drive solution emerged due to demands for better hygiene in the foodstuffs-, chemical- and pharmaceutical industries. The 'Silver-Line'is a continuation of the well-proven 'Black Panther'®- and Vario-model-ranges. The term stands for compact drives enclosed in housings made of stainless steel with rounded edges. The hygiene-conform design prevents accumulation of particles and dirt. All surfaces of the models are precision-turned to a super-smooth finish and some are even polished to further reduce surface roughness.

These servo-motors of Groschopp's product spectrum produce highly-dynamic positioning results. Within the 'Silver Line'-model range, they are motors of the ESK-series with integrated electronics which generate their full torque already at speed 'zero'. The decentralised drive solution found in the motor ESK NI, which was introduced in 2014, is a good example: this servo-motor comprises an integrated, fully digitalised controller for a DC-supply voltage ranging from 24V up to 60 V.The controller is axially integrated inside a stainless steel housing, minimising the amount of cabling. The housing is specially designed for high water protection.The robustdrive solution with variablepower stages of 30-250 Watts is, among others, suitable for decentralised systems in the automation- and conveyor-technologies, where there is a danger of contact with aggressive cleaning agents or chemical substances.

In addition, the company Groschopp AG created a stainless steel motor with integrated standard planetary reducer gear as an innovative and cost-efficient specialised solution for applications where high standards of hygiene are demanded. This drive concept, being hygienically designed, is a progression of the ESK-'Silver-Line'-models respectively of the newer ESKH-model series. They are adhering to the International Protection Class IP69, robustly built and suitable particularly for easy cleaning.

Future Prospects

The company Groschopp AG intends to expand its market position with its hygienic drives for machinery and equipment in the packaging-, foodstuffs-, chemical- and pharmaceutical industries even further in the future. Moreover, the Viersen-based company intends to increase the number of applications for its products in medical technology, and an important step towards this realisation is to further the development of the ESKH-model range to include stainless steel motors with planetary reducer gears and integrated servo-controllers in various design sizes.

Groschopp also plans to develop its controller technology for its drive solutions, as decentralised-controlled drives with integrated controllers in various applications are becoming extremely important, e.g. in dosing technology but also in the area of 'E-Mobility'.

Furthermore, Groschopp is very active in creating innovative drive concepts for electrically driven vehicles: an example is, within the framework of the ESKAM-project, the development of a flexibly scalable drive module for special- and utility-vehicles designed for inner-city usage. Moreover, the company is involved in the project 'Muffel+', which intends to realise a compact, scalable electric drive-platform to replace the diesel-driven multi-functional vehicles.

Groschopp intends to tread new paths in the future even in the area of reducer gears, and not only with its agency partners but also with its own products and new model ranges. At present, the company is involved in a research project for developing spur wheel- and planetary-reducer gears, which are intended, among others, for 'Industry-4.0'- applications. Groschopp aims to recognise and unlock new technologies and to use them in its innovations.

In order to be a leader in technology it is essential that Groschopp develops and maintains close cooperation with universities, technical institutes and industrial partners. Such cooperation is of strategic importance and will, therefore, be actively sought, promoted and cultivated as a priority going forward.

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