SPE Offshore Europe 2015

A team from igus UK made their way up to Aberdeen for SPE Offshore 2015.

Offshore Europe 2015 conference and exhibition from the Society of Petroleum Engineers attracts a global audience of engineers, technical specialists, industry leaders and experts to share ideas and opinions on the current issues in the upstream oil and gas industry. With over 63,000 people in attendance and over 1500 exhibitors it was was the largest Offshore Europe to date.

Overall Offshore was a success for igus UK with many visitors to the stand benefiting from talking to our product specialists.

Here are some pics from our time at the exhibition…



‘Porton Man’ – the robot


Porton Man is a robot that is used to test protective clothing for the British military.

The makers of Porton Man used iglidur X plain bearings in all the robots joints; and this was for a very good reason…

Because Porton Man is used to test protective clothing against chemical, biological, radioactive and nuclear substances, conventional ball bearings would fail quickly when faced with chemical agents such as mustard gas or sarin. However the high performance bearings of the X series wouldn’t due to the fact that they are completely resilient to chemicals and wear proof in temperature ranges of -100 to +250°C.

‘Porton Man’ was built by Crawley Creatures in Buckinghamshire.

Success for igus humanoid at RoboCup Design Award

The ‘RoboCup Design Award’ was awarded for the first time in China last week, and igus submitted our ‘igus humanoid’.

The idea behind the contest is the great goal of the ‘RoboCup Federation’ – a team of autonomous humanoid

robots has to win a football game with the official FIFA rules.

With its simple design, easy interaction with the user and straightforward maintenance work we came in at second place.

Hopefully with this success, the odds are good for igus in future.

igus® helps Formula Student racing team feed its need for speed

UH Racing is the UK’s most successful formula student team of all time. Founded in 1997, the team consists of 30 undergraduate students from the School of Engineering and Technology and they develop a new vehicle each year. A team of students from the Univeristy of Hertfordhsire were asked to make this years UH Racing car much lighter in weight than previous years.

igus, one of the teams sponsors, was more than happy to help with this, explaining the features and benefits of using complex polymer and ultralight metal components  in place of the more traditional steel ones.

igus® helps Formula Student racing team feed its need for speed


Foundries – igus feels the heat

Working in foundries with hot, liquid metals is often difficult and dirty for people and the components involved. Our bearings and e-chains resist such conditions.For example, a drylin linear guide is used as part of the x-ray equipment for material examination in a foundry.

After 8 years of trouble free operation, the linear guide has now been replaced by a new igus guide. Such reliable performance clearly defines our mantra “Plastics for longer life”. Last week we had the pleasure of attending The Gifa, a foundry specialist trade fair in Dusseldorf.

iglidur arrives in Portugal

iglidur crossed the “25th of April Bridge” which is often compared to the Golden Gate Bridge due to its design, whilst on the way to Lisbon.

Crossing the Tagus River

Looks quite similar to the Golden Gate Bridge

On the other side, we stopped at the statue of “Christ the King”. It is based on the Christ statue in Rio de Janeiro which the iglidur®-car has seen during its stay in Brazil 2014.

Cristo Rei

After the short stay, we continued our tour and stopped at the Vasco da Gama Tower for another photo. The tower is named after the Portuguese explorer Vasco da Gama who arrived in India in 1498 as the first European by sail.

The Vasco da Gama Tower

Before lunch, we visited one UNESCO World Heritage Site which was the Jerónimos Monastery.

The Jerónimos Monastery with an impressive detailed facade

After lunch, we went to a famous pastry shop in Lisbon where we ate more than one Pastel de nata. Together with an espresso, it is perfect.

One of the best desserts!

On the bank of the Tagus River, one can find the Padrão dos Descobrimentos which is a monument to celebrate the Portuguese Age of Discovery during the 15th and 16th centuries. At that time, many ships departed from Lisbon to explore and trade with Inda and the Orient.

The iglidur®-car is an adventurer as well

The final stop of the day was the western side of Europe – Cabo da Roca.

The cross symbolizes the westernmost extent of Europe

Three iglidur on tour team

With sunburn and a lot of impressions, we went back to the hotel to get some sleep to be prepared for the upcoming week in Portugal.

Application Review- KUKA

On visiting KUKA Roboter GmbH we were in the presence of a true pioneer in the field of robot and automation technology. The Augsburg-based company developed the FAMULUS, its first industrial robot with six electromechanically-driven axes back in 1973. In 1996, they then played a role in bringing in the era of real mechatronics with a PC-based control system. Today, KUKA Roboter produces and sells automated production solutions for the automotive, medical and solar industry as well as aviation, aerospace and machine tool sectors to name a few.

The robot can cover a larger working area thanks to the linear axis

For many years, the KUKA developers have entrusted igus® chains with the cables for their linear axes. The fact that these are highly robust and reliable, is however not what tipped the scales in their favour. Instead, Hans Brix, linear axis developer, says that it is the exceptionally long unsupported length of the igus® chains, which allows the greatest possible extent of movement by the robots.

KUKA has now laid the chain with the cables on the support structure for the first time. As a result, the trough system is no longer required and the design is far more compact, automatically saving several square metres of space.

A comparison of two systems: in the image on the left, the cables run in an external guide trough. On the right, the e-chain® has been placed on the robot’s support structure. This saves space and reduces costs

igus® generally fills its e-chains® with the cables desired by the customers and then supplies them as complete units that can be simply and quickly installed on site. To date, KUKA has always used a middle-ground option and filled the chains with its own cables. This too is possible if desired by the igus® customer.

KUKA employees and the “iglidur® on tour” team agree: igus® e-chains® last; igus® scarves provide lasting warmth

We would like to thank all the KUKA Roboter GmbH employees that we met for their friendly reception and, in particular, Hans Brix for giving us an interview.

Best regards,
igus® and the “iglidur® on tour” team


From Manresa, we travelled to the south coast of Spain to Marbella. On the way, we visited some customers and due to the long distance, we were always on the road until we arrived at our hotel. The next day was a bit more relaxing but we had to drive to Portugal. First of all, we stopped at the beach in Marbella in the morning to take a few photos and to go swimming.

Close to Marbella beach

Sandor and me took our shoes off to test the temperature of the sea. However, Nils was not afraid of the cold and went for a swim. Due to the 30°C, it was nice to have some time to relax.

Facing the sun

Nevertheless, we had to go on. We drove to Seville and visited the cathedral which is the third-largest church in the world and an UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Seville Cathedral

After some Tapas in a local restaurant, we continued our long journey towards Lagoas in the south of Portugal.

We say “Goodbye” to Spain but for just one week.

After 2028 km we arrived in Portugal. We thank igus® Spain for the first part through this interesting country and we will see each other in one week again.

The area in the south of Portugal is called the “Algarve”

Welcome to Portugal!

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