Ikona gear application wins Frost & Sullivan innovation award
Canadian PlasticsCanadian Plastics
A new gear designed by Ikona Gear International Inc. in Coquitlam, B.C., which uses high-temperature thermoplastics...
A new gear designed by Ikona Gear International Inc. in Coquitlam, B.C., which uses high-temperature thermoplastics, has won the company Frost and Sullivan’s 2005 Technology Innovation Award.
Built specifically for gears for engines and winches, Ikona had to design the gear’s tooth form from scratch to protect the firm from international patent laws.
As a result, the Ikona gear teeth pair has a very high contact ratio and no tip interference, according to Frost Sullivan, which means zero backlash.
Early testing of the gears was conducted with standard stock metal, but Ikona changed its tune after several of its partners including Magna International and Aircast suggested thermoplastics as a cheaper alternative.
“The Ikona gear design is more rigid, has a much higher contact ratio than standard planetary gear designs, and has lower friction as the gear rolls through its contact range rather than sliding with friction,” said Michael Valenti, research analyst at Frost & Sullivan in Palo Alto, Calif.
“This solves some of the problems with plastics being used in gearing,” he added.
Ikona is currently working with StarRotor Corp., in College Station, Tex., to develop gear technology for StarRotor’s engine main drive mechanism. However, Ikona will have to further refine its gear application into a high temperature plastics solution that can eliminate the need to introduce tolerances for metal expansion, Frost and Sullivan said.