LM Guide pioneers
A machine's moving parts can be classified as rolling, linear, or a combination of both. With the development of rolling bearings about 110 years ago, rolling contact became the standard method for accomplishing rolling motion. This brought about a great technological revolution. Rolling contact not only saved motion energy, but also kept frictional resistance to a minimum and thus greatly improved the performance of machinery. However, even though a similar development in the field of linear motion would have been ten times as valuable, linear motion through rolling contact was a long time in coming.
THK solved the problem, previously considered too difficult, of linear motion with rolling contact by applying its unique technological capabilities, and in 1972, it became the first company in the world to develop and commercialize the Linear Motion (LM) Guide. Our linear motion system enabled rapid improvements in the accuracy, speed and labor-saving potential of advanced mechatronic instruments.
With THK's LM Guides, machine tools and industrial robots become capable of ultra-precise operations, and semiconductor-manufacturing devices can operate in submicron units. More recently, the system has been applied in liquid crystal manufacturing lines, railway carriages, assistive vehicles, medical equipment, skyscrapers and residences, and amusement devices. The use of LM Guides has truly expanded beyond all prior boundaries.
What Is a Linear Guide(Linear Motion Guide)?
This is a helpful overview for people unfamiliar with linear guides (linear motion guides) and those who are considering making a selection or purchase.
Company Profile Movie
You can find THK here!
"Where are THK's products used, anyway?"
"All around you!"
This is our answer. In the manufacturing field, in research helping to building the future, and in everyday life -- LM Guides, Ball Splines, Ball Screws, Cross-Roller Rings and other THK products may not be easily visible, but they play an highly important role.
With our products, we contribute to the improvement of infrastructure and more efficient expansion of industry.
Using our unique technologies to help support and create new value in infrastructure areas such as information technology (IT), transportation, civil engineering and construction, and even in people's dietary lives and urban functions is part of THK's business.
Telecommunications infrastructure can be considered the nerve system that controls modern society. Improving the reliability of optical fiber communications networks is a very important task. A combination of LM Guides , Ball Screws and other THK products is used in optical fiber inspection machines to allow accurate inspection.
Shield machines (excavators)
In urban areas where space above ground is almost completely utilized, it is necessary to maintain the transportation network under ground. Shield machines (excavators) take an active part in the boring of tunnels. Our LM Guides are used in the robots that carry out concrete for the shield machine and install required tools accurately.
Multilevel car parking towers and rice planting machines
THK's technologies appear in various areas that support society, from multilevel car parking towers in our cities to rice planting machines that improve agricultural productivity in rural areas.
Changing the Way We Create
We supply products that support the latest industry technologies.
To produce state-of-the-art products all over the world, it is necessary to use high-quality equipment in the manufacturing lines. One of THK's tasks is to meet this need in manufacturing and continue to raise our product quality to even higher levels.
Semiconductor manufacturing equipment
The equipment that manufactures semiconductor chips -- which are what you might call the "brains" of IT-related products -- requires both high precision in chip processing and high productivity in chip manufacturing. Because semiconductor chips are very small in size, the manufacturing equipment must control device movement in the order of one 10,000th of a millimeter. To realize technology which can exercise this control securely, THK's Miniature LM Guides , Miniature Ball Screws and other products are used.
Electronic part mounters and industrial robot transport systems
Cell phones, digital cameras and other devices all use electric circuit boards. The electronic part mounter that mounts ICs and other electronics on those boards uses our LM Guides for tool guidance in micron order and in units of seconds. On the other hand, industrial robots, conveyance systems and other large manufacturing machines also use our LM guides in their guidance section. THK's technologies can be found in a wide range of manufacturing fields.
Reliable technologies that protect people's lives in fields from medicine to security
There are many ways that THK can help protect lives and property. Our products can work like the eyes of doctors, the hands and feet of care staff, even the very foundations of your house. Developing technologies for such needs is one of THK's tasks.
THK's LM Guides are used in the control section of CT scanners and X-ray machines that can diagnose the inside of patients' brains and bodies to assist medical staff in making accurate judgments. In addition to their rich functions, our LM Guides offer a smooth, quiet operation that can help patients feel more at ease during examination.
In Japan and elsewhere, platform doors are installed in many new transportation systems and subway stations. It is no exaggeration to say that labor savings to transportation from automatic operation or operation without conductors are dependent on the use of these doors for passenger safety. Even our LM Guides can contribute to the smooth movement and reliable sliding operation of doors.
To protect human life and property from earthquakes, buildings and houses have long been constructed using anti-quake designs. Now, however, the quake-absorbing technology of seismic isolators can be used instead. Such devices reduce the motion of the earthquake rather than providing resistance against it. THK's seismic isolation LM Guides can be used in all types of buildings, from skyscrapers to single-family houses, and we will continue to develop even more effective and widely applicable technology of this kind.
More smiling, more convenience.
THK products are even found in places you'd never expect.
If you look closely at your daily life, you may discover that our products are helping you in places and ways you'd never imagined. Using technology to make your life more convenient and enjoyable is another of THK's missions.
Barrier-free, electronic system kitchens
THK's technologies help you use your kitchen more conveniently and functionally. Our LM Guides are used in rigid but smoothly moving sliding shelves and in the sliding sections of barrier-free system kitchens . A flexible mind-set has allowed us to apply our advanced techniques acquired in medical institutions and semiconductor manufacturing plants to home appliances, enriching your daily life.
For reasons of safety and durability, automatic doors used in apartment houses and buildings often result in a uniform exterior design. However, our compact but high-performance LM Guides allow the design of various distinctive automatic doors.
Walking with Mother Earth
As a corporate member of planet Earth, THK considers good environmental practices an important business resource.
To conduct business activities on the world stage, we consider that our management, technological development and manufacturing must be informed by awareness of the earth, nature and the environment. We believe that THK must play an important role in the development of environmentally friendly products and activities that will protect the future of the environment.
As a business in the 21st century, focusing on environmental concerns is vital. We adhere to two basic concepts regarding environment protection . The first is the development of our business policy to save energy in production, recycle products, and solve the problem of waste disposal in our manufacturing stages and business activities. We are undertaking various activities for environmental protection in all our plants. The second is the development of products that can themselves contribute to the protection of the environment . The technical innovation of rolling contact utilized in our LM Guides , for example, can save great amounts of energy when employed in the guidance system of any machine.
Large optical and infrared telescopy
The Subaru telescope, a large optical and infrared telescope , stands at the top of the 4200-meter-high Mauna Kea mountain in Hawaii. Here, at the highest astronomical observatory in the world, our LM Guides are used.