Specialty Motor Providers Allied Motion and ThinGap Merge 

All the magnetics are in the rotor in ThinGap’s new motor for cubesats 

Allied Motion Technologies, a manufacturer of precision and specialty controlled motion products, announced on May 9 that it plans to merge with ThinGap, a developer and manufacturer of zero cogging slotless motors such as its new motors for small satellites and cubesats. Their innovative design puts all the magnetics, which are the heaviest part of the motor, in the rotor to maximize inertia. 

Dick Warzala, CEO of Allied Motion 

“ThinGap’s market leading products expand our precision motion capabilities while advancing our strategy to provide integrated motion solutions for demanding applications,” said Dick Warzala, chairman and CEO of Allied. “We will include the ThinGap products in our total solution set and expand the growth opportunities through the utilization of the existing sales and support channels of Allied Motion. We also see the potential to advance our total solution capability in the robotics, semiconductor and instrumentation markets where the key motor characteristics are well suited for the high precision, smooth motion requirements in these exacting applications.” 

“ThinGap’s highly engineered products and focus on top tier OEM customers will benefit from Allied’s complementary product offerings, broad sales channels and volume manufacturing capabilities,” said John Baumann, CEO of ThinGap. “In turn, ThinGap contributes our patented slotless technology and proven track record of motor design, quick-turn production and sustaining support for key customers in critical markets.”  

Based in Camarillo, California, ThinGap designs, engineers and manufactures low profile, brushless DC motor kits and assemblies that utilize a proprietary wave-wound stator architecture and highly optimized rotors. The motors come in a wide range of sizes, output power and form-factors targeting applications, such as satellites, airborne systems, optics platforms, test equipment and medical robotics.  

Its latest product introductions are new 29mm and 45mm frameless motor kits designed for use in small satellites and cubesats, announced in March. High-speed, lightweight and with zero cogging, they enable weight-optimized momentum storage for reaction wheel assemblies used to control small and miniaturized satellites.

Their “air core” architecture lends itself to very low drag at high operating speeds and cogless torque. The wave-wound design of the stator produces a sinusoidal back-electromotive force with total harmonic distortion of less than 1%. The precision hand wound coil results in a phase-to-phase balance within 1 degree. In combination, these produce the highest precision RWA motors available which yields essentially pure torque vector control with very low losses and zero cogging, says ThinGap. 

The new design puts all the magnetics, which are the heaviest part of the motor, in the rotor, maximizing the inertia for a given weight and size. The resulting package is lighter weight for the same momentum storage capacity, and because of no iron saturation in the stator, peak torque capacity is much higher than a similar weight motor.

Terms of the acquisition agreement were not disclosed. Headquartered in Amherst, New York, Allied is focused on controlled motion applications with particular expertise in electro-magnetic, mechanical, and electronic controlled motion technologies. Its products include nano precision positioning systems, servo control systems, motion controllers, digital servo amplifiers and drives, brushless servo, torque, and coreless motors, brush motors, integrated motor-drives, gear motors, gearing, encoders, active (electronic) and passive (magnetic) filters for power quality and harmonic issues. For more info, see www.alliedmotion.com and www.thingap.com