Iida Manufacturing, a pioneer in the compression molding and machining of fluororesin (PTFE) and PEEK, is a technology company that produces over 100 million molded and machined parts such as packings, gears, diaphragms, and bellows annually.
Recently, Iida Manufacturing has developed seven types of high-rigidity and high-heat-resistant gears using super engineering plastics, namely polyether ketone (PEK) and polyether ether ketone (PEEK). These gears achieve an approximate transmission efficiency of 98% at a rotation speed of 1000 rpm. With support from Fukushima Prefecture, they are also working on the development of a decelerator for robot arms equipped with these gears. Leveraging their lightweight and high-rigidity characteristics, the aim is to achieve practical application in core components for robots, aerospace, and medical devices.
Iida Manufacturing has its first and second factories located in Motomiya City, Fukushima Prefecture. They primarily supply industrial parts with excellent heat resistance, sliding properties, and insulation, focusing on fluororesin (PTFE), to the automotive, construction machinery, and semiconductor industries. Building upon their accumulated resin processing technology, they have successfully developed lightweight gears that possess both rigidity and heat resistance.
The developed gears consist of seven types. The outer ring type utilizes metal materials at the rotating center and is injection molded with PEEK and PEK on the outer side. The inner ring type is completely formed with PEEK and PEK. Through verification experiments, they have confirmed outstanding transmission efficiency and high durability.
In the fiscal year 2023, the development of a wave gear reducer for robot arms using this super engineering plastic has become eligible for subsidies from Fukushima Prefecture. This is expected to achieve high torque, high precision, and lightweight design. It is predicted that motor gears using PEEK and PEK will gradually replace metal materials by approximately several tens of percent in the future. Their heat resistance, high rigidity, and radiation resistance make them desirable for driving components in areas such as robots, unmanned aerial vehicles, and aerospace.