Chair Lift Motion Controller Case Study

Chair Lift Motion Controller

Overview: The customer manufactures chair lifts for the elderly and disabled to transport them up and down the stairs. The chair lift system includes the motor, motor speed controller, up/down limit switches, remote direction controls, safety interlocks, and guide rails. The chair runs on tracks mounted to the user's stairway. Power is connected to the chairlift through a drag cable, plugged into a wall outlet, at the top or bottom of the rail. The customer wanted their chair lift's logic, interface, and DC motor speed controller integrated into a low-cost, customized controller.

Application Benefit: By integrating all the logic into the drive's customized software, we were able to lower costs and increase reliability.

The Customer's Immediate Solution: The chair lift included an off-the-shelf DC PWM motor speed controller, remote control circuit board, power supply, and interface terminal blocks with discrete wire interconnects. The customer wanted their chair lift's logic, interface, and DC motor speed controller integrated into a low-cost customized controller. KB installed the chair lift system on the engineering lab's stairway. Our engineering team was able to determine the logic sequence and performance of the existing system and develop the specifications.

KB's Capabilities for Solving the Problem: The KBVF Variable Frequency Drive series customized into a DC PWM reversing drive with dynamic braking. This series incorporates the powerful, second-generation, micro-controller that is programmable for custom OEM applications using software with proprietary motor monitoring capabilities. KB's engineering staff has a reputation for working directly with customer applications to reach satisfactory solutions.

The KB Solution: The objective was to integrate all the control logic and interface into our KBVF Hybrid Drive. A custom interface circuit board included remote control circuitry integration and provided connection and interface to the control and limit switches. Additionally, our team designed the software to incorporate the complete chair lift sequencing and interlock logic and decoded the remote control IR sensor serial commands.

The Results: Using the KBVF-24D with a custom input/output circuit board, we were able to control the chairlift with one hardware module that integrated all of its functions.

Strategic Advantage: The customer got what was requested – no more, no less – with logic performance enhancement, reliability improvement, cost reduction, and a competitive edge — a win-win solution for both the customer and KB.

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