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FORTiS™ enclosed encoder product testing

FORTiS enclosed encoders have been subjected to a rigorous test programme for operation in harsh environments.

Renishaw has decades of experience in the design, manufacture, and operation of metrology products suitable for use within harsh environments, such as machine tools. This experience inspired our rigorous testing programme for the FORTiS enclosed linear encoder range, which includes, amongst others, tests for:
  • Vibration
  • Seal wear
  • Ingress Protection (IP)
  • Long-term operation in a machining chamber
  • Salt spray (fog)
  • Chemical resistance
  • Drop and shock

Watch our product testing videos below

Vibration can be an issue for positional stability when cutting hard metals. Patented tuned mass damping technology in the FORTiS enclosed encoder enables class-leading vibration resistance to 30 g (FORTiS-S™ has been tested continuously at 38 g for 16 hours). The FORTiS encoder also survives random vibration of constant Acceleration Spectral Density (ASD) to 0.9 g²/Hz between 55-2000 Hz and is uniquely protected against vibration at the natural frequency of the encoder.

DuraSeal™ lip seals have been wear tested for 14 million cycles with fine iron swarf and carbide grit mixed in grease. The tough DuraSeal material provides a long lasting and dependable seal around the readhead blade which protects the encoder optics from contamination. Air loss through the encoder is therefore reduced by 70% when compared to industry standard seals, resulting in greater system longevity.

The FORTiS enclosed encoder was installed in a machine tool chamber for more than two years: it was mounted with seals facing the spindle and without machine tool protective covers that are normally used, thus exposing it directly to coolant and swarf on a daily shift basis. Despite this extreme environment, there is no drop in signal level and no visible degradation.

The FORTiS™ enclosed encoder is sealed to IP64 (with air purge): Ingress Protection levels IPX3 and IPX4 water spray testing, plus level IP6X particulate testing. DuraSeal™ lip seals provide superior sealing from water and particulates, preventing water ingress and deterioration in performance.

Accelerated salt spray (fog) testing was used to simulate ten years of salt spray (fog) exposure on the FORTiS enclosed encoder. Further to testing, there is no deterioration in performance, no loss of structural integrity and the product is found to be corrosion resistant.

All seals on the encoder were tested for compatibility with a wide range of industry standard coolants, solvents and oils. Accelerated testing lasted for 6 weeks at an elevated temperature of 57°C: the dimensional stability was confirmed with neither signs of degradation nor chemical reaction.

FORTiS enclosed encoders have been subjected to drop and shock testing. The unique FORTiS non-contact design, with no internal moving parts, minimises risks of breakage and improves reliability to deliver longer system life span. All electronics and optics are safely enclosed in a sealed readhead, with a shatterproof hardened stainless steel scale, for greater robustness and no deterioration in performance.