The global site of the UK's leading magazine for automation, motion engineering and power transmission
23 September, 2020

Product and Supplier Search


Newly separated Yaskawa extends its portfolio

23 November, 2009

In its first public appearance since officially ending its European joint venture with Omron, the Japanese motion specialist Yaskawa has emphasised its independence by launching several new and extended product ranges at the SPS/IPC/Drives show in Germany. These include a range of high-efficiency permanent magnet motors, and modules that add various motion control functions to its Sigma-5 servo drives.

The Eco IPM (interior permanent magnet) motors (below) are designed to meet the new IE3 efficiency classification, and can be controlled using Yaskawa’s V1000 vector inverter without needing feedback. Although the 200V and 400V motors are more expensive than less efficient IE2 asynchronous motors, they are two frame sizes smaller for a similar output and their high efficiency means that that the extra cost can often be recouped “in a few months”, according to Yaskawa.

The first new motion module converts the Sigma-5 drives into 1.5-axis controllers based on IEC 61131-3 and PLCopen function blocks. By combining motion control, PLC and drive functions, the plug-in MPC2600iec module (below) can be used to automate complete machine subsystems in applications such as coilers, cross-cutters, and flying saws. The module receives its guide value from a master encoder and synchronises its slave axis to this value.

The second module is an indexer command module which turns Sigma-5 servo amplifiers into single-axis point-to-point positioning systems that provide up to 256 programmed index moves. The module supports CANOpen and EtherCat, and up to 16 indexers can be connected in a serial network. Programming languages are not needed and the modules are configured using a Windows software package.

Another new arrival is a module that uses the CANopen-over-EtherCat communication protocol to create synchronised, distributed drive systems with high data bandwidths. The EtherCat module offers a wide range of functions based on the IEC 61158 Type 12, IEC 61800-7, CiA 402 drive profile.

Yaskawa was also demonstrating its DriveWorks EZ software which allows PLC functions to be executed by its A1000 and V1000 frequency inverters, eliminating the need for PLC modules. This ability also reduces fieldbus loads and allows scan times as fast as 1ms. The drag-and-drop software uses function block diagrams and provides 204 function modules.

The A1000 inverter, first seen at the 2008 SPS/IPC/Drives show, now spans ratings from 400W–710kW and is said to solve most drive tasks. The drive, which replaces Yaskawa’s F7 series after ten years on the market, boasts an energy-saving function and TÜV-certified functional safety.

Following the ending of its joint venture with Omron, Yaskawa is re-establishing a distribution network in Europe. In the UK, it has appointed Crompton Controls as a “strategic partner”, which will integrate Yaskawa’s AC inverter drives into its motor control and automation portfolio. The offering will include Yaskawa’s V, J and A1000 series, covering power ranges from 0.2–600kW.


  • To view a digital copy of the latest issue of Drives & Controls, click here.

    To visit the digital library of past issues, click here

    To subscribe to the magazine, click here



Birmingham 2020The next Drives & Controls Exhibition and Conference will take place in Birmingham, UK, from 25-27 January, 2021. For more information on the event, visit the Show Web site


"Do you think that robots create or destroy jobs?"



Most Read Articles