Press Release


Optimum Configuration for Each Drive Solution

  • Complete systems: ZF as systems supplier
  • Precise and reliable: ZF drive solutions for mechanical and plant engineering
  • Innovative and market-oriented: ZF special driveline solutions

In order to meet the ever-increasing market demands and to fulfill our customers' specific requirements, ZF will focus on its function as systems supplier in industrial automation: ZF offers the optimum configuration for each drive solution - greatly varied and compatible with all common field bus interfaces. Proper dimensioning of the driveline plays a decisive role, in particular with regard to energy and cost efficiency. Servomotors, servo-controlled transmissions, and servo controllers – everything from a single source.

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Optimum Configuration for Each Drive Solution

ZF Friedrichshafen AG with its Special Driveline Technology business unit has offered a wide range of industrial drives, brakes, and clutches for mechanical engineering applications as well as customized drive solutions for decades. The focus of development and production activities is on servo-controlled transmissions for industrial automation, two-speed manual transmissions for machine tools, as well as customized drives, for instance for printing machines or robotics applications.

The range of innovative products covers low-play servo-controlled transmissions (ZF-Servoplan), robust two-stage transmissions (ZF-Duoplan), as well as hysteresis applications that transfer torque without contact (ZF-Tiratron).

Thanks to their technical advantages, their respectively simple setup, and their opportune outside dimensions, electromagnetically operated single-disk clutches and brakes, like ZF Single-Disk, are increasingly used for the automation of mechanical working processes. The field of application ranges from medical technology to high-stressed textile machines.

One transmission for many applications

The 1 and 2-stage servo-controlled transmissions ZF Servoplan can be used in many applications and are found wherever highly dynamic and precise positioning is required. Target output torques of 25 to 3 000 Nm are possible with different model sizes. Planetary gearsets for servomotors are used for packaging technology, in shaping technology, as well as generally for machines and facilities.

Even under continuously high machine loads, ZF industrial drives work in a highly reliable and precise manner. Their size is so small and their weight so low that they can be smoothly integrated into the respective manufacturing concept. Low-scale maintenance efforts and longevity guarantee high availability.

Today, a machine tool must be universally applicable in order to process different materials. The two-speed ZF Duoplan manual transmissions live up to these demands. High cutting speeds are needed for soft materials and major cutting forces for hard materials. This level of flexibility can be obtained through the application of a shiftable transmission. On the one hand, the high speeds of the drive motor in the direct gear (1:1) are maintained and on the other hand, the motor's drive torque is multiplied via the ratio (e.g. i = 4.00) while the speed is respectively reduced. The high-speed model range is used for higher speeds of up to 18 000 rpm; it is characterized by particularly smooth running and lowest possible temperature development. The latest development of the Duoplan model range is the hollow shaft drive. This product owes its special feature to the innovative construction for which a patent was filed: The extremely compact planetary gearset is only active when it is really required. For high speeds in direct gear (transmission ratio 1:1), it stays decoupled, so that the rotary masses are significantly reduced.

Precise, reliable, and maintenance-free

ZF hysteresis components – brakes and clutches in combination with control electronics – are applied wherever tractive forces need to be exactly regulated and defined torques are precisely set: E.g. when processing paper or wire in winding/spooling processes or in the case of load simulations at test benches and in ergometers. In addition to a high setting accuracy and the wide torque range, this technology - also called ZF-Tiratron - excels through non-contact, zero-wear torque transmission.

Customized transmission systems

Using ZF's know-how in transmission technology, customized systems for printing machines are developed. These drives operate in the inking unit, distributor, and in the damping unit; they are optionally engageable.


Georg Ehling

Head of Marketing and Business Development

+49 7541 77-2199