Schaeffler’s VarioSense sensor bearing was named “Best of the best” by the industrial magazine “MM Maschinenmarkt” in the drive technology category of its “Best of Industry” award. Schaeffler’s VarioSense bearings make multiple sensor signals available at once for machine and process monitoring in a single compact unit and thus make Industry 4.0 solutions possible. Up to five sensor elements can be arranged in the sensor cluster ring, which has a standardized section width of 7 millimeters. These record various physical values in the machine, which can then be used for controlling drives, monitoring processes, or calculating the remaining useful life. The version based on a standard deep groove ball bearing that was presented in 2017 is now being tested by several customers, while VarioSense cylindrical and tapered roller bearings are also currently in the development stage. As part of its future-oriented program “Agenda 4 plus One”, Schaeffler is positioning itself as a premium supplier of innovative mechatronic products and smart services. When digitalized components are designed, the rolling bearing generally represents an ideal “measuring point” for recording operating loads, process parameters, and the condition of machines: The integration of sensors, actuators, controllers, and software will make innovative functions and business models possible that allow the availability of machines and equipment to be increased and processes optimized. In the picture (left to right): Stefan Glück, Vice President Systems Development Industry 4.0, Martin Kram, Vice President Basics Industry 4.0, and Peter Schuster, Vice President R&D Industry 4.0.
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