Innovative high-tech startup IMSystems, spin-off of the TU Delft, received a € 300.000 investment from UNIIQ. This news was announced by Theun Baller, dean of the Faculty of Mechanical Engineering at TU Delft during the YES!Delft new years drinks. IMSystems develops the Archimedes Drive, a speed reducer that uses frictional contact instead of gears to transmit force. The investment enables IMSystems to already enter the market with an optimized product this year.

Speed reducers are used to ensure that the right amount of speed or torque by an (electric) motor is delivered for a specific application. IMSystems is one of the first companies that has been able to successfully apply the principle of frictional contact for speed reduction in a compact and lightweight gearbox, resulting in the Archimedes drive. The Archimedes Drive will know many applications in various industries, and especially in the robotized manufacturing industry.

We are convinced that the Archimedes Drive is a significant hardware breakthrough that allows robots to function optimally, with higher precision, less maintenance and at a fraction of the weight of competing drives – Jack Schorsch, founder and CEO of IMSystems

Industrial robots highly depend on the quality of gear teeth transmission. While software developments are moving rapidly, the lack of significant hardware breakthroughs is hampering robotic development. The Archimedes Drive is able to deliver the same amount of torque while being a fraction the weight of competing drives. Besides, it enables robots to operate with a much higher precision due to the lack of backlash traditional gear teeth do have. Furthermore, power transmission through friction nearly eliminates the need for lubrication, thereby lowering maintenance costs.

Jack Schorsch, founder and CEO of IMSystems: “The investment of UNIIQ will enable us to optimize our product more quickly, to ultimately get our product faster to market. We are convinced that the Archimedes Drive is a significant hardware breakthrough that allows robots to function optimally, with higher precision, less maintenance and at a fraction of the weight of competing drives.”

With the investment of UNIIQ the precision, reliability and lifetime of the Archimedes Drive will be tested in various setups. Following the technical validation, IMSystems expects in collaboration with leading robotics manufacturers to release a commercial product later this year. “And this focus on realizing commercial traction in an early phase is equally important”, says UNIIQs fundmanager Liduina Hammer. “We primarily invest in companies with pro-active teams that focus on both the technical and commercial part of their organisation”.