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Nidec invests $80m to take lead in strainwave gears

19 April, 2022

The Japanese motion engineering giant Nidec is investing 10 billion yen (around $80m) to double the size of a manufacturing facility in the Philippines where it produces gear reducers – especially, strainwave gears. It is aiming to double its sales of these products to 100 billion yen ($800m) by 2025, thus overtaking the current global market-leader in these technologies, Harmonic Drive Systems, which is also based in Japan.

According to the Japanese news agency Nikkei, Nidec’s investment in the Nidec-Shimpo production plant on the island of Luzon, will more than double its 36,000m2 of floorspace and boost the number of staff employed from around 600 to 1,000. It will also raise Nidec’s total production capacity for gear reducers from around 30,000 per month at present, to 80,000 by 2025.

Nidec is hoping to tap into a growing demand for precision gear systems for applications such as robots and chip-making equipment. As well as raising production capacities and cutting lead times for existing products, Nidec is also developing new products for this market.

Nidec’s Flexwave harmonic gears promise zero backlash, good positioning accuracy and repeatability, and high torque densities. They have three internal elements – a flexspline, a circular spline and a wave generator. The elastic properties of the flexspline and the teeth differential between the flexspline and the circular spline are said to result in “unique” reduction characteristics.

Nidec is aiming to more than double its capacity to produce precision gears such as strainwave devices

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