Do you feel the silence?
Low Noise
Do you feel the silence?

Don’t you agree that silence is something wonderful? In many industrial applications, low noise is decisive for the daily operation. And where convenience meets performance, the low-noise planetary gears from IMS Gear are a natural part of the solution.

The low-noise planetary gears from IMS Gear are used in different appliances, in building engineering and smart home, with e-bikes, AGVs and further drive solutions in intralogistics such as steering systems and many other applications all over the world. And soon in yours as well?

You are interested in low-noise planetary gears from IMS Gear or would like to realize a project with us? Then you should contact us right away. Together we will find the perfect way for your individual requirements.

Sound, tone, noise - Sounds complicated?

  • What exactly are low-noise gears?

    Low-noise gears from IMS Gear are planetary gears that are characterized by their smooth and low-noise operation achieved by an acoustically optimized gearing. This results in a sound that leaves a pleasant, haromonious impression. Thus, low-noise gears are particularly suitable for applications in which a very smooth running of the gear together with an accordingly low noise development is essential.

  • What distinguishes low-noise gears from “normal” planetary gears?

    Compared to normal planetary gears, low-noise gears feature an acoustically optimized gearing. Both the toothing form and the materials used are adapted accordingly to achieve a high-quality noise image. Likewise, both the housing materials used and the housing design are noise-optimized.

  • Since when and why have low-noise gears been in place?

    Low-noise planetary gears have been on the market for more than 10 years. Starting with the untypical field of fork-lift truck steerings, low-noise gears have become indispensable in many areas. With our low-noise gears we from IMS Gear have developed great expertise, thus ranking among the most important manufacturers of low-noise planetary gears.

    Low-noise gears are used in areas in which customers draw a connection between the product quality and the impression of high-quality sound or in which the environment and application require a low noise contribution of the gear. You can find examples in numerous success stories with convincing low-noise planetary gears from IMS Gear.

  • What is the technological challenge to reduce the noise of a gear?

    The acoustic optimization of a gearing often conflicts with the design that is focussed on the service life and power density of a gear. In simple terms, an improved acoustic behavior is often accompanied by a shorter service life and load bearing capacity. Often, the major technological challenge consists in solving this contracdiction for the respective application. In doing so, we from IMS Gear rely on many years of experience and thoroughtechnological expertise with respect to the development and manufacturing of low-noise planetary gears.

  • Are there differnent degrees of “low-noise”?

    The sound pressure level and the sound power have been established as objective noise indicators. In particular the sound pressure level, a value measured in decibel (dB), is used as the indicator for noise. 0 dB are equivalent to the human hearing threshold, 40 dB to a pleasant, quiet surrounding, appr. 100 dB to a plane taking off, and 140 dB to the pain threshold.

    Beyond this, the subjectively perceived noise impression of a planetary gear depends on its sound distribution across the frequency and its temporal regularity. In this way, noises that strongly vary in terms of time are perceived as low-quality or unpleasant. This may ultimately evoke the impression that the planetary gear is defective. In contrast, constant noise in combination with low frequencies is perceived as high-quality.

  • What kind of technological competence with respect to the development of low-noise gears has IMS Gear got?

    Based on its decades of experience, IMS Gear has gained profound knowledge and all technological competences required to design low-noise planetary gears and distribute them around the world. From the theoretical toothing design of which the acoustic behavior is evaluated at an early stage by means of simulation to the low-noise design of all components and the production and acoustic final check of our products.

    To give an example, IMS Gear has developed special simulation models and processes. These allow to virtually assess the toothing noise at an early stage of development. Once the first components are produced, we can objectively determine the first noise impression by our acoustic measurement systems in the acoustic chamber, compare it to the simulation results and deduct potentials for optimization. In production, we apply self-developed test stations to objectively measure and assess the noise of each of our low-noise planetary gears before they are dispatched.<o:p></o:p>

  • Which applications and industries require low-noise gears?

    The applications for low-noise gears are manifold. Our low-noise planetary gears are often used in areas in which the customer draws a connection between the product quality and the impression of high-quality sound or in which the environment and application require a low-noise contribution of the gear. Examples are drives for:

    • E-bikes
    • Tailgate drives of vehicles
    • Blind and shutter drives
    • Locks and gates
    • Various kinds of appliances
    • Gears for fork-lift truck steerings
  • Are all planetary gears from IMS Gear also available as low-noise variants?

    Almost all planetary gears from our three product lines IMS.Eco, IMS.Pro, and IMS.Drive are also available as low-noise variants. They feature a helical gearing in the first stage. Only our planetary gears with larger outer diameters (e.g. our IMS.120 Pro) are not available as low-noise gears.

    An application-oriented special case is our IMS.Drive series: In order to meet the special requirements in the area of wheel drives, our IMS.Drive gears are by default designed as low-noise planetary gears.

    Please check our overview of planetary gears for detailed information if a desired product is also available as a low-noise variant or configure your suitable product in our Solution Finder. if you have any further questions, our technical sales department will be happy to assist.

Our Low-Noise Products

Our Low-Noise Products


Low-noise drive solutions are relevant for many different industries. With our low-noise planetary gears we have the suitable solution - also for your application.


Solve your challenge

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Planetary Gears for Forklifts

Solutions that don’t let you down!
Logistics / Fork-lift Trucks

Planetary gears from IMS Gear

For many years, planetary gears from IMS Gear have become indispensable in the field of industrial intralogistics. With our IMS.Drive series we have developed a product series that is custom-fit for the special requirements of fork-lift trucks, but also for AGVs (Autonomous Guided Vehicles) or AMRs (Autonomous Mobile Robots). Lifting loads and the spirits!

With its modular system, IMS Gear’s spectrum ranges from quick quality solutions to customer-specific adaptations and sophisticated special gear configurations. The same applies to our solutions for intralogistics.

  • High efficiency
  • Small installation space
  • Low noise development

Being able to react to changing requirements quickly and efficiently - this is IMS Gear.

Intralogistics with IMS Gear


For years, almost noiseless fork-lift trucks in huge industrial warehouses 
have used planetary gears from IMS Gear as the power transmitting element of electromechanical steering systems. The solutions are centered around the configuration of proven elements of the modular system from 
different product lines that have established a product line of their own: 
the special IMS.Drive series. The result far exceeds the limits of the 
modular system and meets increased requirements to torque, low noise, and installation space without the need for special development.

Safe and Silent Steering


For almost two decades, leading manufacturers of industrial trucks have trusted in planetary gears from IMS Gear for safe and silent steering systems. The ability to reliably transmit high forces in small spaces makes our planetary gears ideally suited for this application. Originally, IMS Gear met the user-specific requirements, e.g. to the available installation space or the required torque strength, by two gear variants with different diameters.

New Conditions - New Solutions


Even so, improvements of the application were continuously implemented with recourse to the modular system. “In 2001, it was all about reducing the noise level”, Sales Engineer Andreas Sigwart illustrates the further development. This had been triggered by a modification of the industrial truck drives, in particular with fork-lift trucks: Instead of combustion engines with diesel or gas drives and the respective noise development, battery-electric 
that operate emission-free and almost silent have prevailed.
The new development of a planetary gear optimized for low noise would 
have taken a lot of time, involved high expenses, and entailed respective 
technological risks. Thanks to the use of a helically geared input stage from the IMS Gear modular system especially designed for low noise 
, this effort could be avoided

New Paths Beyond the Modular System


After the helically geared solution had reliably fulfilled its service for more than 10 years, yet another adaptation to further increased requirements became necessary.
To be precise, the achievements consisted in higher torques, an increased robustness against overload torques, a longer service life and a further improved noise behavior. “All this had to be realized with reduced installation space in order to be able to serve as many different steering systems as possible”, Sigwart reports. 
IMS Gear resorted to its box of tricks: The combination of different series within one gear drive, complemented by new specific gear components, was a new approach beyond the modular system.
The helically geared input stage from the IMS.81 Pro LN ensures smooth running. For this application, the bearing bolts of the planetary carriers are flattened on both sides. This results in a lubricating groove that significantly extends the service life of the gear drive. Instead of an axial screw connection with a housing diameter of 105 mm,
IMS Gear uses a new one-piece radially reduced housing with a diameter of 80 mm. Apart from the space saving the bearing flange is omitted as it can now be integrated.
The gear drive and motor are assembled without screws; instead, the gear 
housing and the motor are attached by a radial pin connection. This type of connection prevents the twisting of the motor against the gear drive - even more important with higher torques. In the first stage, a special helically-geared insert is installed as ring gear. At the outside, the gearing of the insert engages positively into the housing gearing of the second stage and so prevents the twisting. In the output stage, planetary wheels of size IMS.105 Pro transmit the high torques and can briefly absorb dynamic peak loads. These planetary wheels have proven themselves in many projects with high load requirements in the power steering of fork-lift trucks.At the individually designable output side, we from IMS Gear routinely use ball bearings and output shafts from the IMS.120 Pro series. These two components resist the high radial forces at the output side that may occur if a wheel of the fork-lift truck incidentally hits a curb


To meet the specific requirements in the area of fork-lift and industrial trucks at any time, we from IMS Gear have always smartly refined our solutions.It is based on a reliable set of proven planetary gear series, complemented by our well-known advisory and development expertise that we demonstrate again and again by thoroughly analyzing the special requirements of our customers. The result provides for the safe, reliable, and silent transportation of goods at many places around the world.


Download Success Story

Ready to tell your Success story?

You are looking for a custom-fit solution for your application in the area of Engineering Technologies? Then let’s talk about it: As an experienced development partner, we at IMS Gear are always excited to develop new solutions for the world of tomorrow.

Raphael Faller
+49 (0)771 8507-38297

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