It seems Mazda will always be linked with the Wankel rotary engine. After all, it was

It seems Mazda will always be linked with the Wankel rotary engine. After all, it was the only manufacturer that persevered with the concept. It wasn’t the first to use it in a production car, though; that was NSU, with the Spider of 1965, followed by the Ro80 of 1967. Mazda’s unit actually had its basis in NSU’s, with the Japanese company having purchased a licence to the then-revolutionary technology from the Germans in 1961. NSU’s unit was highly problematic; some Ro80s’ engines wore out before they’d covered even 30,000 miles, and although the problem of excessive wear was eventually resolved, warranty claims destroyed the brand’s finances. Thankfully for Mazda, then, its engineers had spent years refining the formula – redesigning components to prevent the fatal ‘chatter marks’ caused by oscillation and developing aluminium-carbon seals in place of NSU’s iron rotor tips – before releasing its debut Wankel car. Fourth-generation MX-5 heads back to Mazda’s roadster’s roots, surpassing its predecessor in every area That was the Cosmo, a diminutive (3ft 8in high, to be exact) but handsomely distinctive two-...

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them. Informa PLC’s registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 8860726. Engineers rely on motion-control devices to improve efficiencies and production rates on automated factory floors, or at least maintain them. One family of such devices, stepper motors, is widely used because of their simple implementation, attractive price/performance ratio, and high torque at low speeds. In the past, stepper motors couldn’t keep up with servo motors in demanding applications, but recent advances have greatly upgraded stepper-motor performance, expanding the areas in which they can make positive differences. Here’s a look at those advances, and an overview of the other two leading motion-control devices for machine automation: servo motors and variable-frequency drives (VFDs). Engineers can choose from numerous varieties of motors, drives, and controllers to meet the demands of the application at hand, such as torque, speed, and size. Stepper motors generally include a motor, drive, and controller. The motor, a brushless dc versio...