SOUND WEAVING

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Description: Picanol NV, a maker of weaving machines based in Leper, Belgium, markets a variety of models, including a family of high-speed rapier looms sold under the name OptiMax. The rapier loom has no shuttle. Instead, it uses a device called a rapier to pass the weft at high speed through the warp. Indeed, the OptiMax looms are so fast that particular care had to be taken in their design to minimize noise and vibration. When it came to developing its high-speed OptiMax looms, Picanol decided to bring in a noise and vibration specialist early in the design process. Picanol called on another Belgian company, LMS Engineering Services. A major source of noise were the gears in the driver assembly. LMS created a model that accounted for gear tolerance and varying contact stiffness of teeth dynamically gripping into one another. Picanol claims that its OptiMax looms are 15% more productive than earlier models.
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