Next-generation Industrial Handling

Designed to provide excellent performances in terms of speed and available torque, the new drive rollers in the BL3 series by Rulli Rulmeca can fulfil the growing dynamism demands of the logistics market. Thanks to the IP69 standard and to their easy integration with smooth or modular belts, drum motors on the other hand represent a valuable alternative to traditional gear units to move rollers, especially in the food & beverage sector.

by Giorgia Stella

Rollers, drum motors and components for industrial handling of materials are the core business of Rulli Rulmeca, a company which has been operating since 1962 with headquarters in Bergamo and concerns in 85 countries in the world. Among the most significant product line innovations as regards drive rollers, there is the latest generation of the RDR (Rulmeca Drive Roller) series, that is the BL3 24V DC model, designed for applications that require high performances in terms of speed and available torque. The new series of drive rollers, which feature a wider range of regulations thanks to a Brushless motor with better performances capable of satisfying the growing dynamism demands of the logistics market, was showcased as a preview during the Ipack-Ima 2018 trade show. “Our drive rollers basically integrate a motor, a gear unit and a driver”, Luca Baruffi, Sales Manager for Italy at Rulmeca, explains. “An integrated driver manages all the functionalities related to the motor, allowing the customer to set all the data in a simple way. Customers can also choose among several possibilities as for motion transmission to other rollers; normally, product configuration is carried out according to specific design requirements”.

A silent, compact and highly efficient solution
Due to the integrated electronics, drive rollers do not therefore require further drive units in order to obtain a safe, silent and efficient functioning. Besides being classifies as safe, since it is powered at 24V in direct current, the system is a compact, long-lasting and energy-saving solution. The motor group, that is the technological heart of the drive roller, in the suggested standard application fits into a roller with a 50 mm diameter, whose finishing may be agreed upon with the client.
“Drive rollers in our range can be configured so to have a better integration within the solutions created by designers, thus ensuring higher quality and improved aesthetic”, Mr Baruffi sums up. Among the peculiarities which distinguish the new BL3 are: low-medium-high speeds, fixed or which the client may vary; high torque values; frequent start/stop cycles or motion reversals; optimized energy consumption; safety of on-board line operators; compact and distinguishing design and ease of installation.
Rulmeca also provides solutions to manage zero pressure accumulation conveyor systems, in addition to a broader range of components, wiring and extension cables specifically designed to allow the BL3 drive roller better fit into industrial automation systems.

A system for roller movement which is easy to integrate
Another important part of Rulmeca’s production is made up of drum motors, functional and technologically advanced objects which represent an alternative option to traditional roller drives for roller conveyor movement. “A drum motor is made up of an external shell – whose function is conveying motion to a smooth or modular belt – which integrates within its cover an asynchronous motor and a gear unit”, Mr Baruffi explains. “The motor and gear unit may have different properties depending upon the application; for instance, the gear unit may be made out of a technopolymer for light applications or completely made out of steel for more heavy-duty applications”. The only element in motion of the drum motor is the shell. “This implies that machine manufacturers do not need to worry about fixing or inserting external bearings – Rulmeca’s Sales manager continues -, but they may count on an object with IP69 standard, that is, particularly appropriate for the food & beverage industry, which simply needs to be integrated on the machine. Bearings have a double protection system, with lifetime lubrication and therefore they are maintenance-free. On account of their properties, our drum motors, which have been on the market for quite some time, are increasingly being used right in the food & beverage industry”.