Advanced Wagon - Product Information

A Visual act Advanced wagon provides horizontal stage motion without limitation.  Using a patented algorithm, wagons can move along curves, maintain one face forward as they move, or rotate and move in any direction simultaneously.  Each Advanced wagon has a complete navigation system on board such that motions can be repeated with high accuracy.

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Advanced Wagon

Wagons are built according to the following specifications:

  • Full freedom of movement in two dimensions plus unlimited rotation.
  • No cables, wires or other mechanical limitations.
  • Operation on most floor surfaces, including dance floor.
  • All components in a height of 200 mm.
  • Configuration, programming and operation from a single interface.
  • Up to 16 wagons in operation at any time.
  • Synchronization of any number of wagons.
  • Speeds of up to 1 m/s.
  • Position repeatability to less than 5 mm.
  • Reusable components.

Programming the wagons involves creating sequences of movements that are organized as ques. After selecting the wagon or wagons to be moved the operator uses the mouse to ’drag’ the wagon into position virtually, much like adjusting a curve in a PC drawing program. Alternatively, the operator can use the teach-in function to save a manual motion. For accurate positions coordinates, angles and distances can be entered directly. Two or more wagons can be combined into a group such that several wagons appear to function as a single wagon. Movements can also be tested ’off-line’ by running the cues on the screen.

All the components are modular and easily installed in the wagon framework.  They can therefore be reused in wagons of different shapes and sizes and quickly replaced for service.

Drive unit redundancy can be accomplished by including one or more extra drive units in a wagon.  A failed drive unit can be lifted from the floor and the wagon can continue operation.

All of the wagon components are designed to fit into the wagon frame while allowing for a platform height of 200 mm.  Being modular they can be reused in wagons of different shapes and sizes and quickly replaced for service.

  • The DRIVE UNIT is the key to the mechanical operation of the wagon. Each unit includes two servomotors that provide for locomotion and steering in tandem. The drive unit’s patented design allows rotation of the wheels at standstill without any damage to the stage floor. Depending on the maximum speed, drive units can move from 500 to 2000 kg. Up to 10 units can be mounted in a single wagon.
  • LIFT CASSETTES, while optional, are highly recommended.  They allow drive units to be lifted from the floor so as to provide redundancy.  They also ensure that the pressure of the drive wheel remains constant, even if the floor is not flat or if the load on the wagon changes.
  • The TRIPLE CASTER UNITS have been especially designed to provide a minimum of rolling friction. This helps to provide for high positioning accuracy, even when the navigation system is out of range.
  • A LASER SCANNER works together with the navigation computer to control the position of the wagon.  The scanner can be mounted anywhere on the wagon, including under the floor or on top of scenery.  As long as the laser can see a minimum of three reflectors, a repeatability of +/- 5 mm can be expected.  In cases where visibility might be limited, as when the scanner is mounted in the wagon frame and can “see” only 180 degrees, two scanners can be used.
  • The CONTROL CABINET contains the control and navigation computers, a power supply and an emergency stop system. Two independent radio systems ensure reliability and safety.
  • The AMPLIFIER CABINET includes four intelligent servo amplifiers. The servos work together with the control computer to dynamically position the wagon.
  • SEALED BATTERY PACKS provide power for many hours of continuous operation.
  • The POWER SWITCH includes an emergency stop button and a socket for connecting a mains cable. It is small and can be placed in any accessible position.
  • A LIFT CONTROL SYSTEM is used to control lift cassettes. Both manual and automated systems are available. The automated system allows the operator to raise and lower drive units from the operator desk.

Technical specifications

Maximum speed dependent on drive unit – from 0.3 to 1 m/s
Minimum speed 0 m/s
Maximum load  that can be moved dependent on drive unit and wheel pressure against the stage floor – from 500 kg to 3000 kg / drive unit or up to 30 000 kg per wagon
Maximum number of drive units in a wagon 10

Advanced wagon component summary

Component Catalog number Number required Notes
Drive unit W-DU22-0x Minimum 2; maximum 10
Lift cassette W-LIFT-xx Same as drive units
Control cabinet W-CTL 1
Laser scanner W-LAS 1 or 2 One always included with control cabinet
Amplifier cabinet W-AMP 1 for every 2 drive units
Battery cabinet W-BATT-13x 1 plus 1 for each amplifier cabinet
Triple caster W-TPL Minimum 2 depending on shape of wagon 1 for each 500 kg load
Power switch W-QSTOP 1
Power cables W-CBL-PWR-xx 2 + 1 for each battery cabinet; + 1 for each amplifier cabinet To connect all cabinets
Laser cable W-CBL-LAS-xx 1 for each laser scanner Control cabinet to laser scanner
Laser adapter W-CBL-LASADP 1 for each laser scanner At laser scanner
Motor power cable W-CBL-MOTPWR-xx 1 for each drive unit Amplifier cabinet to drive unit
Motor signal cable W-CBL-MOTSIG-xx 1 for each drive unit Amplifier cabinet to drive unit
System bus cable W-CBL-CAN-xx 1 for each amplifier cabinet Control cabinet to all amplifier cabinets as daisy chain
Bus termination W-CBL-CAN-TERM 1
Power switch cable W-CBL-QSTOP 1 Power switch to control cabinet
Stage Lock W – LOCK – AIR Optional – usually 2 Laser mounting bracket
Lift manual control W-LIFTCTL-M Select one lift control Supplied with 2 tanks
Lift automated control W-LIFTCTL-A Select one lift control Supplied with 2 tanks
Laser holder W-LASHLDR 1 for each scanner

See separate data sheets for detailed component specifications.