An operating table needs to be as maneuverable as possible and extremely sturdy. Vertical adjustability allows the table to both adapt to the surgeon’s height as well as to easily transfer the patient to another bed or wheelchair. The linear guides used in this application have to meet stringent standards for quality, load-carrying capacity, and safety – precisely the requirements for which INA designed its KUVE and KUSE profile rail linear guides. These linear recirculating ball bearing and guideway assemblies have four and six rows of rolling elements, respectively, which translates into extremely high load-carrying capacity. With a load rating of up to 450kg, quality and safety are ensured.

In addition to vertical adjustability, surgeons also place a premium on the operating table’s lateral and, especially, longitudinal positionability. This is particularly important for performing intraoperative diagnostic procedures. When X-rays are taken using a so-called C-arm, for example, the eccentric positioning of the operating table can create the necessary space underneath the table to accommodate the lower half of the X-ray machine. The KUVE linear guidance system is suitable for both linear and lateral adjustments, while its four rows of balls deliver high load-carrying capacity, thereby ensuring the required level of safety. A lubrication reservoir near the raceway permanently supplies lubricant to the raceway elements. The result is long service life and, depending on the operating conditions, zero maintenance.

As an added bonus, these linear guides are also available with a Corrotect® coating, which provides the rolling elements and raceways with optimal corrosion protection. Other coatings, such as TRIONDUR, ensure high wear resistance and outstanding dry-running characteristics in situations where there is insufficient lubrication.

A product innovation that is ideally suited for all applications that are particularly sensitive to loud noises is INA’s four-row linear recirculating ball bearing and guideway assemblies that employ quad spacers located between the balls to significantly reduce running noise. Low resistance to movement also enables smooth and precise positioning.

Non-magnetic bearing solution

Schaeffler Group Industrial already offers solutions for the innovative ‘stereotaxis’ medical imaging procedure. Increasingly used in heart surgery, this technique provides ultra-precise control of catheters and other instruments. Using magnetic fields, a computer guides the tip of the catheter through the bloodstream and ventricles with utmost precision, directly to the point of treatment. Since the viability and success of this procedure depends on magnetic fields, the operating table itself must be non-magnetic. Consequently, this also applies to the bearings and linear guides that are employed. To that end, the Schaeffler Group has developed an innovative and customised solution: the non-magnetic KUVE-B-AM linear guidance system. Its dead weight is only 60% of the standard version, while permeability (µr) is less than 1.02. Without question, the Schaeffler Group offers the best available solution for non-magnetic medical technology applications.


Safety and flexibility are the two critical elements that allow an operating room to function smoothly and efficiently. With its INA and FAG brands, Schaeffler Group Industrial offers an outstanding array of solutions that covers the entire spectrum of equipment needs in the OR. This applies to both standard applications as well as individual customised assemblies. Schaeffler’s research and development efforts are focused on creating solutions that deliver the highest level of safety while maximising freedom of motion for doctors, nurses and caregivers; solutions that make the medical professional’s job easier and more efficient; solutions that, in the end, benefit the most important person in this entire process: the patient.