Saturday, July 3, 2010

Crane performs electronic acrobatics!

A crane control refurbishment project at Clydeport’s Hunterston terminal (GB) relies on Parker SSD AC890 series system drives to deliver pinpoint control in the unloading of coal from vessels. The massive crane can lift up to 36 tonnes of coal in a single grab, allowing loads to be deposited reliably and accurately into the dockside hopper, even in inclement Scottish weather and winds of 40mph or more.

Clydeport operates Scotland’s main west coast ports, with Hunterston located on the Clyde Estuary in North Ayrshire providing a world class bulk coal facility. Hunterston has the natural advantage of having one of the deepest sea entrance channels in northern Europe; does not have to be dredged on an annual basis, and is flexible enough to cope with even the largest vessels afloat – up to 350,000 tonnes.

Formerly known as the Hunterston Ore Terminal, the facility was built on reclaimed land in the late 1970s by the former British Steel Corporation to land iron ore and coal, the raw materials for the Ravenscraig Steel Plant (Motherwell). Ravenscraig closed in 1992 and the terminal was bought by the Glasgow-based Clydeport port management company to handle coal.

The long travel dockside crane at Hunterston is one of the largest in Britain, but at over 30 years old its control system was beginning to show its age. Relying on mechanical brakes and thruster brakes, operation could be a nerve wracking business in the typically challenging weather conditions. In addition, mechanical wear and damage were ongoing problems, with the squaring of wheels and worn out tracks. Modern ports demand absolute efficiency, and demurrage – the compensation paid to the owner of a vessel which has been delayed in port beyond the agreed time – can be considerable.

To inject a new lease of life into the crane, Clydeport decided on a major refurbishment of the control system, and put the project out to tender. Among the keys to success would be the ability to integrate seamlessly with the existing Ward Leonard field control system, and to provide regenerative braking with an active front end (AFE) tied to the dock power supply. The former would maintain Clydeport’s own engineering personnel’s familiarity with the system, giving them increased confidence, while the latter would be key to increased control and energy efficiency.

The tender was won by Stockport based system integrator T&M Machine Tools, with owner Tom Yates developing a control system built around Parker SSD AC890 series drives with AFE technology for regenerative braking. Yates comments: “AC drives normally dissipate braking energy by using dynamic braking resistors. However, crane applications can operate much more efficiently with an active front end. Here the drives are on a common DC bus where the overall system shares the line’s energy, with the active front end providing a clean, efficient method to regenerate the drive’s braking energy directly back into the line as required.”
Each of the crane’s legs has four 37kW motors. The control solution developed by Yates divides these into eight paired sets, each under the control of an AC890 drive.

The control panel itself was built for Yates by the systems department at Parker SSD’s Littlehampton facility, which also provided full engineering support for the wider upgrade project. Yates worked closely with Parker SSD to develop the AFE regenerative braking system, with the full regenerative operation giving the crane drivers pinpoint joystick control of the traverse movement of this massive crane. “The AFE regenerative braking allows a lot of energy to be dissipated very quickly, giving very accurate control even in heavy winds,” says Yates.

The crane can lift up to 36 tonnes of coal in a single grab, raising it 100ft or more out of the vessel and into a dockside hopper, which feeds the coal onto a conveyor system away from the dockside. In a business where speed is critical if demurrage is to be avoided, the Hunterston terminal boats unload at speeds of over 2000 tonnes per hour, ensuring a quick turnaround for carriers. “The operators find the refurbished crane much easier to drive, which gives them a lot more confidence, and so helps to boost unloading efficiency. They can drive the crane faster, confident that they have pinpoint accuracy of traverse movement. Even in high winds, the crane can perform electronic acrobatics,” says Yates. “Also, mechanical wear is significantly reduced, so maintenance requirements are simplified, and further potential for demurrage is eliminated.”

Testament to the success of the upgrade is the fact that T&M Machine Tools has been awarded the contract for a second crane. “This is another job where I shall definitely be working with Parker SSD,” says Yates. “The products are extremely capable, and the engineering support from Littlehampton is excellent.”

Network-based control system

New Foundation Fieldbus engineering tool improves efficiency -

Yokogawa Electric Corporation has released an enhanced version of the STARDOM™ network-based control system with upgraded engineering functionality. A new engineering tool facilitates the construction of field digital communications networks that can reduce the cost of maintaining production equipment distributed over wide areas.

Development background
In response to growing global energy demand, oil companies have been expanding their oil and gas exploration activities in recent years. As gas and oil field production equipment is often distributed over very wide areas, periodic field equipment inspections and other maintenance activities have proven very costly, and pose a huge financial burden on these companies. One solution to this problem is the use of digital communication networks. By linking widely distributed production equipment, such networks make it possible to capture and centrally manage maintenance information such as individual device status and maintenance history. This reduces costs by improving maintenance efficiency.

For this latest version, Yokogawa has optimised its existing engineering tool that is used to configure large-scale SCADA systems based on the FOUNDATION™ fieldbus protocol. The new tool, FOUNDATION fieldbus Configurator, enables a 60% reduction in engineering man-hours (compared to the previous tool).

In addition to this new tool, STARDOM's Logic Designer engineering tool for creating control applications has been improved. An enhanced Distributed Network Protocol 3 (DNP3) is also provided.

The FOUNDATION fieldbus Configurator has a number of features that improve engineering efficiency and enable the deployment of FOUNDATION fieldbus networks in relatively short periods of time. For seamless operations, all screens now have the same look and feel as that of other STARDOM engineering tools. In addition, an enhanced export and import function facilitates repeat engineering, and application downloading time to fieldbus devices has been reduced substantially.

Logic Designer, the new control application creation tool, offers improved functionality, with new 'drag & drop', automatic rearrangement, automatic wiring mode switching, and other functions added that make this software easier to use.

The new version of STARDOM also offers enhanced functionality of the DNP3 protocol. DNP3 is a communication protocol used for controlling equipment distributed over a wide area, such as oil and gas field equipment. The protocol has been enhanced to support a wider range of SCADA applications.

Teruyoshi Minaki, Director and Executive Vice President of Yokogawa's Industrial Automation Business Headquarters, said: "The digital technology used with FOUNDATION fieldbus and other protocols plays a great role in the SCADA market by making it possible to manage field devices distributed over wide areas, such as oil and gas wells and wind power installations. Yokogawa has revamped its engineering tools to facilitate high quality engineering. Yokogawa will continue to provide field digital technologies so that its customers can reduce costs over the long term."
STARDOM is an open network control system consisting of components with control, operation, and monitoring functionality. The autonomous controllers at the core of STARDOM have the same control and monitoring functions found in a PLC as well as the information distribution functions of a PC. These products are widely used as intelligent remote terminal units (RTUs) in distributed applications such as natural gas and oil wells. When used in combination, the FCN/FCJ autonomous controllers and FAST/TOOLS SCADA software give increased flexibility in distributed applications.

Major target markets for STARDOM include oil and gas field production equipment in upstream oil and gas processes and new energy markets including wind power generation equipment and micro-hydroelectric power generation equipment.

Applications include the monitoring, operation, control, and data acquisition/recording of production equipment distributed over a wide area.

Pressure transmitter for high media temperatures

Baumer’s pressure transmitter ED701 is now available with a cooling neck for applications with high media temperatures of up to 300 °C. Thus, the device is suitable for pressure measurement especially in sterilisation processes in the pharmaceutical, chemical and food & beverage industries as well as in medical technology. The ED701 features high accuracy and long-term stability. It is available with several industrial and hygienic process connections.

Even without cooling neck, the pressure transmitter is suitable for media temperatures of up to 150 °C, with a standard cooling neck for temperatures of up to 200 °C, and with an extended cooling neck for up to 300 °C. Due to the active compensation of temperature drifts, the ED701 has a very high measuring accuracy (up to 0.1 % F.S.). Furthermore, the device features a high long-term stability (0.1 % per year) and excellent repeatability. If required, the zero point can be recalibrated using a simple mechanical adjustment.

With a large range of process connections and several output signal options (4…20mA, 0…10VDC, 0…5VDC), the ED701 is suitable for a great variety of applications. The device is completely made of stainless steel, but for use with aggressive media, it can be provided with a pressure connection in Hastelloy C. For applications in hazardous areas, several ATEX versions are available.

Capturing solar energy

Precision tracking for maximum capture of solar energy
Yokogawa Electric Corporation (which has been very busy these past few days!) has released the HXS10 controller: a new product that controls the actuation systems that move heliostats (reflectors) and photovoltaic panels. The HXS10 helps to maximise power generating efficiency by controlling the angles of heliostats and solar panels so that they stay pointed at the sun as it moves across the sky.

Development background
Renewable energy is seen as an alternative to the world’s dwindling supply of fossil fuels and as a means of reducing greenhouse gas emissions. One of the driving forces for solar thermal and photovoltaic power generation systems in recent years has been their ability to generate electricity during the daytime hours, when demand is at its highest.

In a solar thermal power generation system, sunlight is concentrated onto a receiver that uses the heat to turn water into steam, which rotates a turbine and generates electricity. By controlling the angle of the heliostat so it tracks the movement of the sun, it is possible to precisely focus the sunlight onto the receiver. For photovoltaic power generation systems, although most solar panels used today are of the fixed type, power generating efficiency can be improved if panels are kept directed at an optimal angle towards the sun. Control technologies that can precisely orient the heliostats and panels to follow the movement of the sun are crucial.

By utilising its reliable control technologies, Yokogawa has developed the HXS10 to control the actuation systems of solar thermal and photovoltaic power generation systems. Based on the facility location, date, and time, the HXS10 calculates the position of the sun through a high-resolution (64-bit) solar position algorithm, and operates motors or hydraulic actuators to adjust the angle of the heliostats and solar panels so they stay pointed toward the sun.

Product Features
1. Low-cost / high-value design
The HXS10 is designed specifically for the control of solar tracking systems. Compared to general-purpose controllers such as PLCs, this controller has lower initial costs and requires less engineering time.

2. Excellent environmental resistance
The HXS10 is built of environmentally resistant and durable components and can withstand temperatures ranging from –20°C to +70°C. This product is optimal for the control of solar power generating facilities installed in deserts and other harsh locations.

3. Communication functions
The HXS10 has a communication function that allows it to be monitored by a host system in a central control room. Moreover, to eliminate communication traffic overload and create a more secure and stable communication environment, each HXS10’s communications can be routed to the host system via another HXS10 unit.

Main target markets
Heavy machinery companies that manufacture solar thermal and photovoltaic power systems

Application
Control of solar tracking actuation systems

Web based SCADA system

Yokogawa Electric Corporation has released version R9.03 of the FAST/TOOLS web-based SCADA system. Adopted by many innovative industrial automation users worldwide, this platform-independent process management software sets the standard for Operational Excellence. Combining the latest web technology with exceptional quality has resulted in the most advanced SCADA solution yet - one that is designed to meet the latest engineering and maintenance requirements. Thirty years of project experience and innovation in the oil & gas, petrochemical, and power industries are the foundation for this next generation SCADA software.

This greatly enhanced version of the FAST/TOOLS web-based SCADA system enables a new and innovative approach to remote engineering and maintenance, deploying process applications and monitoring via web-based services. Its use of the latest technologies and web-based architecture provides management and maintenance personnel with easy and secure access to their assets. FAST/TOOLS has high-level system integration capabilities, facilitating ever more intuitive and advanced system deployment and significantly reducing costs.

Remote asset management drives down operating costs and optimises the sharing and exchange of information. The latest web technologies are incorporated in the Java-based FAST/TOOLS engineering and maintenance environment to enable access and execution within standard web browsers like Internet Explorer and Firefox. This facilitates access by the various start-up and design teams to the application and system software configuration, in a zero deployment and transparent manner. The integrity and confidentiality of process information is preserved. Java was chosen as it can be used with standard web browsers; it is architecturally neutral and provides good support for superb graphics.

Numerous benefits are derived from this concept including global access and sharing of data via collaboration centres and other venues, allowing continuous application development and management to take place. Furthermore, a reduction in the number of paper documents required and the higher level of management efficiency made possible by the continuous availability of process information are expected to lead to a reduction in cycle time.

A commitment to security policies that are in accordance with corporate IT directives is the foundation for Yokogawa's development activities that are targeted at achieving a secure deployment. To enhance security, this system and its applications are hardened to prevent failures and protect against unauthorised access and use. At the same time, thanks to a simple licensing policy, it is now easier than ever to reduce costs through web-based engineering and virtualisation. A web-based server and client architecture ensures easy remote access and facilitates the deployment of security enhancements as well as graphics and application services.

A new engineering and visualisation editor with an advanced sheet- and form-based environment allows for a conveniently arranged framework that greatly reduces the amount of work required for engineering and visualisation. The new environment is easy to work with, and combines the power of today's most sophisticated graphical applications in one easy-to-manage package. Dynamic layers and visibility groups enable multilevel processes and KPI monitoring and supervision within a single operations architecture.

The new operator environment is language independent and can be triggered by log-in procedures and the like. This allows for a mix of local and remote operators, as appropriate, and is not limited by language barriers.

A comprehensive new plug-in structure that goes beyond "traditional driver configuration" allows for excellent integration of new and existing infrastructure, guaranteeing seamless vertical and horizontal integration. Capabilities such as soft marshalling and the integration of FOUNDATION(TM) fieldbus device messages and information are setting the standard for Operational Excellence. This is applicable for both the Yokogawa product family and an extensive list of third-party hardware and software products. These include the Exaquantum plant information management system, the STARDOM network-based control system, the DAQMASTER data acquisition unit, the FA-M3 PLC, and the ProSafe-RS safety instrumented system.

A variety of software platforms are supported to protect application investments and give users a full choice of hardware and software platforms. The client/host architecture operates securely on the Windows 7, Vista, XP, 2003/2008 Server, UNIX, and Linux Redhat platforms.
Teruyoshi Minaki, a Yokogawa Director and Executive Vice President who heads the Industrial Automation Business Headquarters, comments: "The FAST/TOOLS R9.03 web-based visualisation, engineering, and remote maintenance environment brings revolutionary changes to real-time process information intelligence. It is enabling an evolution to a much more intuitive and advanced approach in remote process management and maintenance, and is easy to deploy across the web."

Main target markets and applications include process monitoring and asset management in industries such as oil and gas, petrochemicals, chemicals, power, pulp and paper, pharmaceuticals, food, iron and steel, waste, and water and wastewater treatment.

Gigabit Ethernet cabling system

The AMP NETCONNECT business unit of Tyco Electronics has announced the general availability of its reduced diameter MRJ21 Ultra Slim Gigabit Ethernet cabling system.

The trimmed-down MRJ21 Ultra Slim cable assembly is 9.14 mm in diameter, weighs 40% less than comparable four-pair cabling systems, occupies 45% less rack space, requires 25% less power per port, and promises to help to reduce data-centre operating costs.

This cable assembly is a major development in the structured cabling marketplace, especially for data-centre customers who are seeking to optimise space in the rack, on the floor, and throughout cable pathways.

"Our MRJ21 Ultra Slim cabling system is the thinnest copper Gigabit Ethernet solution available from Tyco Electronics",
comments David Richens, Senior System Application Engineer at Tyco Electronics: "We are excited to bring this innovative cabling technology to our customers and to the marketplace. It is the perfect solution for today's server-crowded data centres where space is a premium." "Tighter IT budgets coupled with escalating power costs are driving technology selection", he adds, "In this context, the design of our MRJ21 ultra slim cable improves airflow, dissipates heat more efficiently and reduces overall power consumption."

Installation of the MRJ21 Ultra Slim cabling system is six to ten times faster than four-pair cabling, with significant reductions in the cable management and routing problems of bundled cabling systems. Engineered to support more ports per rack, the lean MRJ21 Ultra Slim cabling system supports six ports of Gigabit Ethernet interface, which dramatically increases the number of ports customers can include in a single rack. Whereas traditional four-pair cable bundles add weight and create clutter, the MRJ21 Ultra Slim cabling system reduces cable mass, bend radius and weight without sacrificing performance.

Needs of high end control applications

Intel processor tackles critical requirements of high speed processing, built in communications and large data storage

GE Intelligent Platforms has announced the availability of its latest and most powerful addition to the PACSystems RX3i family of CPUs. The new RX3i CPU315 is aimed at the needs of high performance control applications and is ideal for a wide range of applications where large amounts of data and application optimization are needed. Typical applications where the new CPU is useful are in Water & Wastewater, Power and Process Control.

“GE Intelligent Platforms’ PACSystems excel in demanding control applications, and the CPU315 will provide users with an even greater performance leap,” said Bill Black, Controllers Product Manager. “It is highly competitive with other processors on the market and will satistify the demands of discriminating customers.”

The PACSystems RX3i CPU315 incorporates the powerful Intel® M class 1Ghz processor to provide unprecedented speed and performance. The efficiency of the CPU315 enables applications to reduce machine cycle times and therefore improving productivity. In addition to the increased performance the CPU315 has 20Mbytes of user memory available, double what was previously available, making it able to address critical customer requirements for high speed processing and large data storage.

Key features of the PACSystems RX3i CPU315 include:

    · 20 Mbytes of battery-backed user memory and 20 Mbytes of non-volatile flash user memory
    · Access to bulk memory via reference table %W
    · Configurable data and program memory
    · Programming in Ladder Diagram, Structured Text, Function Block Diagram, and C
    · Auto-located Symbolic Variables that can use any amount of user memory
    · Reference table sizes include 32Kbits for discrete %I and %Q and up to 32Kwords each for analog %AI and %AQ
    · Supports up to 512 program blocks. Maximum size for a block is 128KB
    · Two serial ports: an RS-485 serial port and an RS-232 serial port
The PACSystems RX3i controller is part of GE’s innovative PACSystems family of programmable automation controllers (PACs). Like the rest of the family, the PACSystems RX3i features a single control engine and universal programming environment to provide application portability across multiple hardware platforms and deliver a true convergence of control choices. The PACSystems control engine provides high performance on several different platforms, allowing OEMs and end users with application variability to choose the exact control system hardware that best suits their needs - all in a single, compact and highly integrated package.

New DC motors

Rotalink has launched a range of high-torque brushed DC motors with neodymium rare earth magnets. The new RE series delivers at least twice the maximum shaft power of similar sized permanent magnet DC motors and are a cost effective option where increased dynamic performance and/or small size are important application factors. The low cogging design uses very thin and lightweight neodymium magnets with high density windings and a 6-slot core for smooth motion and an excellent torque to inertia ratio.

The long life RE series motors are available in diameters of 15, 24 and 30mm with nominal voltages of 12 and 24 VDC. Through the range, maximum motor power is from 2.0 W to 29 W and maximum stall torque from 9 to 299 mNm.

These new motors are sourced from global distribution partners as a part of their strategy to maintain competitive pricing for commodity components and combine them with its own innovative designs for gearbox, motor feedback and motion control technologies to enable low-cost miniature rotary power transmission solutions up to 28 Nm and linear motion solutions to 50 N.

Their range includes planetary and spur gearbox designs that feature a selection of standard or enhanced polymer gears on sintered or ball bearings in a wide choice of output torque ratings. The range also includes unique ovoid style gearboxes that combine spur gears with ultra-polymer planetary stages for extremely high torque output in very compact designs. This flexibility allows customers to exactly match their performance requirements from motor type through to performance characteristics without compromising cost.

They also manufacture incremental and absolute encoder feedback devices along with speed controls and innovative motion controls including Red Drive - a powerful DC motor drive with drag-and-drop flow chart programming for motion control including encoder feedback for motors up to 200 Watts.
The RE series motors are included in Rotalink's new and revised full range catalogue which includes two other new DC motor ranges ( heavy case and brushless) in addition to several new gearbox lines and new absolute encoders, and a brushless version of Rotalink's Red Drive motion controller.

Biofuel plants urged to monitor discharge levels to avoid fines

Instrumentation company Quantitech is urging biodiesel producers in the UK to take necessary environmental monitoring precautions to avoid fines resulting from inadvertent discharges into streams and waterways.

The warning comes following a clampdown by the US Environmental Protection Agency which saw many biofuel plants come under close scrutiny and in some instances fined for monitoring lapses.

In order to improve monitoring, biofuel producers are being urged to monitor their waste by-products more closely prior to discharging and to measure oil and grease concentration levels to ensure compliance.

The InfraCal TOG/TPH (Total Oil and Grease/Total Petroleum Hydrocarbons) from Quantitech offers on-site results in 10-15 minutes, is easy-to-use, lightweight and is ideal for monitoring fuel, oil and grease discharge levels both before and after treatment.

Quantitech’s Keith Golding believes that portable instrumentation is ideal for regular effluent checks to ensure that UK biofuel producers meet the necessary monitoring requirements. He said: “One of the main advantages of the InfraCal TOG/TPH is that it provides users with virtually instant readings and removes the inconvenience of having to wait for off-site lab results.

“By undertaking routine portable monitoring, biofuel producers in the UK should be able to avoid the pitfalls experienced by their counterparts in the USA.”

Information worker solution

Company among top in Information Worker Solutions, Office Business Application category -
Invensys Operations Management has announced that Invensys Skelta has been selected a 2010 Microsoft Partner of the Year Awards Finalist in the Information Worker Solutions, Office Business Application category.

According to Microsoft, the Partner of the Year Awards will be presented in a number of categories, with winners and finalists chosen from a pool of almost 3,000 entrants worldwide. The Information Worker Solutions, Office Business Application Partner of the Year Award recognises partners who have excelled in offering a breakthrough solution by integrating with the Office client or an Office SharePoint interface to a line-of-business application. The award recognises Invensys Skelta for helping its customers connect people, applications and partners while delivering excellent total cost of ownership. Invensys Skelta has uniquely and positively affected its customers' business challenges through its expertise in the Information Worker Solutions competency.
"I congratulate Invensys Skelta on this fantastic accolade. It acknowledges long-standing commitment to providing business process management and advanced workflow solutions-built on common, easy-to-use Microsoft technologies-that help our clients achieve productivity excellence," said Sudipta Bhattacharya, president and chief executive officer, Invensys Operations Management. "Integrating our Invensys Skelta solutions with Microsoft Office, SharePoint and other Microsoft programs allows us to extend our open Wonderware® System Platform and InFusion™ Enterprise Control System offerings."

"Congratulations to the 2010 Partner Award finalists for delivering such creative and superior Microsoft solutions and services," said Allison Watson, corporate vice president, Worldwide Partner Group, Microsoft Corp. "It's incredible to see the level of expertise our partners continue to exhibit as they create and deliver innovative solutions and services to grow their businesses, meet customer needs and drive down costs."

Sanjay Shah, managing director, Invensys Skelta, said, "We are extremely pleased to have been selected a finalist for the 2010 Microsoft Partner of the Year awards, and the fact that we were chosen from more than 3,000 candidates is an additional honour."

Nuclear motor brochure

Baldor has published a highly informative brochure detailing the extensive range of motors that it produces for nuclear applications. The product line is the largest available from a single source and encompasses over 250,000 ratings, types, styles and sizes, from 200 W to 11,000 kW. The brochure is a key information resource for anyone seeking to install or replace a motor in a nuclear power plant, or in a nuclear fuel reprocessing or radioactive waste management facility. Typical uses include driving fans, pumps, compressors and motorized valve actuators.

The brochure details all the motors that Baldor produces for use in Class 1E (safety related) Mild and Harsh Environments, as well as radiation-resistant motors for operation in non-Class 1E commercial or industrial environments. Every Baldor nuclear motor component – from the motor hardware to the rotor and stator – fully complies with the appropriate IEEE and NUREG standards governing nuclear power plants.

Baldor Class 1E nuclear motors are available in a wide range of NEMA and IEC frame sizes, and are designed, manufactured and tested under a nuclear quality assurance program in compliance with the NRC (United States’ Nuclear Regulatory Commission) 10CFR50 Appendix B standard. Class 1E motors for use in a harsh environment are qualified for a total radiation dosage of 2 x 106 Gy over a 40-year life; those intended for use in a mild environment are qualified for a total radiation dose of 1 x 102 Gy over the same period.

Smallest IEPE-type triaxial accelerometer

Meggitt Sensing Systems debuts world’s smallest triaxial Isotron® accelerometer

Meggitt Sensing Systems has announced the new product launch of the Endevco® model 35A, the world’s smallest ISOTRON® (IEPE-type) triaxial accelerometer with integral electronics, designed for high-precision vibration measurements in three orthogonal axes on very small objects.

Offering a low impedance output, shear mode construction and weighing just 1.1 grams without cable, the adhesive mounted Endevco® model 35A is designed as a complete measurement package to reduce the unwanted effects of mass loading on more delicate test structures. Sensor output is transmitted through the same wires that supply required 4 mA constant-current power. The model comes pre-installed with both field repairable and factory replaceable fine gage wires (34 AWG) as output leads. Model 35A includes the Endevco® model 3027AM5-120 cable with pigtails at one end to connect to the pre-installed accelerometer wires and three BNC connectors at the other end. A removal tool is also provided.

With its extremely small size, the Endevco® model 35A is ideal for the shock and vibration testing of electronic components and equipment; automotive component vibration monitoring; scale model vibration testing; and biomedical research.

Water-in-solvents analyser!

Applied Analytics, Inc. redesigns and enhances their already very successful Microspec product.

Just like their counterparts in the computer and cell phone industries, Applied Analytics continue to take advantage of the latest technologically superior - and very often less costly - components, to enhance the performance of products. "In today's competitive market, one cannot afford to sit back and rest on one’s laurels; one must stay alert to the advent of change. Superior components provide three great benefits: improved performance, longevity, and a cost savings which will translate into a lower-priced, elegant solution for end users."

"Stellar performance begins with a concept, followed by a superior design and precision construction; embracing quality and craftsmanship are the hallmarks of the Applied Analytics team. Like our well-proven family of analyzers including the OMA300 and the TLG-837, the Microspec MCP-200 is endowed with technology and design innovation that are unknown elsewhere."

The Applied Analytics Microspec is an excellent online, real-time, water-in-solvents analyser. In these economic times, it ought to be seriously considered and promoted, because it offers considerable savings over current methodologies in use.

The Microspec is an ideal replacement for the lab where lab personnel are performing routine applications for liquid samples that require Karl Fischer titration to determine the amount of water in the sample. The MCP-200 will perform this measurement online continuously, and will save its users a great deal of money with an ROI that is in most cases measured in months. We will be more than happy to work with you to demonstrate the savings in manpower.

Some of the applications are: Water in Acrylonitrile, Acrylic acid, Chlorine, Methylcyclohexane, Hexane, Acetone, Panthenol, Aniline, Silicon Oil, Liquid Ammonia, N-acetyl-L-cysteine, 2-methyl-5-mercaptothiadiazole, vinyl chloride, Caprolactam, Piperidine, Piperazine, acetopenone, Benzophenone, Oils, EDC, Pesticide formulations, Urea, Cyclopropyl methyl ketone, lemongrass oil, diesel, gasoline, methyl ethyl ketone peroxide. The analyser can also be used for gas applications such as CO2, CO, and CH.

With the Microspec you may expect a high-performance instrument, innovation, expert design, quality manufacturing, reliability, proven benefits, proven technology, and customization based on your specific needs.

Friday, July 2, 2010

Wireless to make splash at WWAC symposium!

Keynote speaker and technical program for the 5th Annual ISA Water and Wastewater and Automatic Controls Symposium

Wayne Manges addresses the 5th ISA-France Forum, June 2010
Wayne Manges, co-chair of ISA100 Wireless Standards Committee, certainly gets around. In mid June he addressed the ISA-France Forum on “Smart grids: automation, communications and cyber-security at the service of grid optimization”. This was the fifth annual ISA-France Forum and was held in Paris (F). It attracted over 140 participants.

Now we learn that he is to be the keynote speaker at the 5th Annual ISA Water and Wastewater and Automatic Controls Symposium (WWAC) in Orlando, (FL US), 3-5 August 2010. Manges, will review the first released ISA 100 standard and its potential impact on the water and wastewater industries. He will present on “WIRELESS IS NOW! Technologies, Standards, and Applications.”

Manges currently directs the US Department of Energy’s (DOE) Industrial Wireless Program for UT-Battelle at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) in Oak Ridge (TN US), focusing on the needs of hard industries from DOE’s Industrial Technologies Program.

With 30 years at ORNL, Manges works extensively with steel, paper, and other industries, including water and wastewater, to bring robust, wireless technology to their markets, and is committed to the deployment of integrated systems that solve real problems. He has been declared a visionary for his early views on wireless applications and has published and presented papers around the world. He is also a contributing editor for Sensors Magazine.

He holds a BS in Education and Chemistry from California University of Pennsylvania, a BS in Electrical Engineering from the University of Pittsburgh, an MS in Natural Science from the Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, and an MS in Electrical Engineering from the University of Tennessee.

Manges’ opening-day keynote address will be followed by two days of technical presentations that focus on technologies, case studies, methods, and theory on water and wastewater processing, water collection, water treatment, SCADA, and more. Presentation titles include:

Improving the Availability of Lift Stations through Optimized Redundant/Backup Control, presented by Francisco Alcala and Jacob Moser, CDM

Real Time Visual Analysis and Monitoring of Feedwaters for Human and Industrial Consumption, presented by Paul O’Brien, J.M. Canty Inc.

Bringing Wastewater Treatment into the Twenty-first Century, presented by Chuck Saunders and Gary Szilagyi, Jacksonville Beach WWTP

Wireless Ethernet Technologies and Security for the Water Industries, presented by Mike Nager, Phoenix Contact

During exhibit hours, attendees will be able to view the latest controls equipment, as well as instrumentation to fit today’s industry needs, from industry vendors. Exhibitors include: Emerson Process Management, G Instruments, GE Sensing, MOXA, Phoenix Contact, Primary Flow Signal, Inc., and Spirax Sarco Inc./EMCO.

WWAC attendees represent public utility companies; water-technology companies; and automation-, processing-, and controls-solutions providers; and others.

Two ISA training seminars will be held in conjunction with the technical conference. These one-day technically focused courses include Industrial Flow Measurement Overview (EI10C), led by Wiley Montana; while Manges himself will lead Introduction to SCADA Systems Integration (IC30C1).

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Improving product quality, reducing rework

High impact solutions quickly improve operations, protecting margins and delivering quality for a sustainable competitive advantage

GE Intelligent Platforms has announced the Proficy® Accelerator for Centerlining, enabling continuous improvement and resolution of problems due to variability, in a move to full process reliability and stability. Centerlining is the next solution in the company’s ever-growing line of Proficy Accelerator software and services offerings, delivering functionality in a low-risk, extremely rapid manner by using a proven, template-based approach.

Companies today need a way to automatically track all the data they accumulate from operations, figure out what is “normal” and when things are off track so they can “manage by exception.” Centerlining, also called run-to-target, helps reduce variability and increase efficiency. The goal of the Proficy Accelerator for Centerlining is to reduce costs due to material losses and other waste from process and product variability, as well as increase throughput and yield.

Proficy Accelerator for Centerlining solution focuses on rapidly identifying process and product inconsistencies, performing statistical analysis to improve control, and managing and improving operations in real-time. This solution will drive operational excellence to improve product quality, reduce rework and the risks associated with product safety, and ultimately enable a sustainable competitive advantage.

“Through our long history in the software business, we have continually enhanced our solutions to drive continuous improvement programs allowing companies to build on their progress along a consistent set of milestones,” said Sheila Kester, General Manager for GE Intelligent Platforms’ Operations Management Software. “This Operational Excellence journey starts with plant level efficiencies and builds upon analytics across the production network for improved planning and execution. Proficy Accelerator solutions allow manufacturers to quickly implement the Proficy Software Platform to take advantage of these gains.”

Proficy Accelerator consists of powerful, out-of-the-box solutions that can rapidly demonstrate business value from the Proficy Software platform in as little as 30 days with minimal risk. It is an easy way to prove the value of Proficy and jumpstart the Operational Excellence journey. In addition to the Centerlining solution, GE Intelligent Platforms has also introduced:

· Proficy Accelerator for Production Efficiency allows manufacturers to maximize the utilization of their plant assets. It provides visibility into factors such as equipment downtime, changeover effectiveness, waste and operating efficiency. It supports root-cause analysis by automatically linking downtime events to a specific cause in real time.

· Proficy Accelerator for Change Management drives increased efficiency of personnel and productivity. This solution helps organizations assess, monitor, manage, control and lower project and maintenance costs associated with software and device management.

· Proficy Accelerator for Manufacturing Energy Management correlates energy costs with manufacturing production, rapidly enabling sustainable operational excellence and energy cost savings.

· Proficy Accelerator for Packaging Performance utilizes an operator-centric performance management paradigm to improve Overall Equipment Effectiveness (OEE), production rate, availability and order fulfillment while reducing waste and labor costs. This solution provides critical insight into high-speed packaging line operations. When fully implemented, customers have seen OEE increases of between 5% and 12% on packaging lines over time.

Fulfilling low-cost solar needs

Carlo Gavazzi adds Eos-Array Lite option to configurable PV-controller technology, boosting performance, efficiency and ROI from smaller installations

Carlo Gavazzi has extended its modular control and management solution for solar-power installations by introducing Eos-Array Lite, offering increased modularity for cost-sensitive applications from 10kWp upwards and providing localised diagnostics supporting rapid repair of power faults.

Building on the principles of the Eos-Array modular control system introduced in 2009, Carlo Gavazzi’s new Eos-Array Lite comprises the dedicated VMU-ML master unit featuring focused control capabilities and up to 15 modules providing string-control, measurement and I/O functions. The Eos-Array Lite string-control module, VMU-S0, provides a cost-optimised feature set monitoring voltage and current to pinpoint the location of any power faults. This can help maintenance teams identify the causes of faults quickly, to minimise the cost of repairs and increase uptime, thereby maximising return on investment for solar generating capacity. The VMU-S0 unit is capable of direct DC measurements up to 16A and 1000V.

Complementing these modules, the VMU-P environmental measuring unit provides one temperature input and one irradiation input for monitoring the status of the photovoltaic (PV) cell array. The VMU-O local output unit provides one relay output allowing the VMU-ML controller to manage a device such as a local alarm.

“Eos-Array Lite enhances choice for customers seeking to overcome the drawbacks of traditional PV controllers, which typically impose large space requirements, limit flexibility, and bring complex installation and wiring challenges,” said Alan Hickman, Managing Director, Carlo Gavazzi. "As a lower-cost option providing all the modularity and many of the features of Eos-Array, Eos-Array Lite will increase the accessibility of Carlo Gavazzi’s technology enhancing the value of solar power to operators and end users.”

When assembled to create a local control system for PV plant, the modules provide timely and accurate alerts to system faults such as defective PV modules, incorrect connections, or failure of the inverter. This contrasts with competing systems, which are typically only able to monitor the inverter. Operators also benefit from simplified installation, since there is no need for power supply or bus wiring among modules. In addition, industry-standard RS-485 Modbus communications simplify integration into the customer’s PV management system.

This modular control system enables a space-optimised solution for any PV installation, and can comprise from two to 16 single-DIN modules, up to a maximum width of 280mm. The system is supported by Eos-ArrayLSoft software, which is designed specifically for use with Eos-Array Lite to facilitate configuration of modules during plant commissioning as well as read-back of data in normal operation.

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

New magmeter

Two-wire magnetic flowmeter offers high performance using dual-frequency excitation

The new Yokogawa ADMAG AXR is a two-wire magnetic flowmeter that achieves high performance by using dual-frequency excitation technology.

To date, most magnetic flowmeters have been of the four-wire type, where high accuracy and performance are achieved by using a dedicated power-supply cable that is separate from the signal cable used for the measurement current output. The two-wire type, on the other hand, uses just one pair of wires for current output and power supply, offering significantly lower installation costs by requiring neither a dedicated power supply cable nor a power-supply unit.

Despite these benefits, conventional two-wire magnetic flowmeters do have limitations in terms of measurement accuracy and stability, and as a result have not been well accepted in the process automation sector.

Now, however, Yokogawa has adapted its dual-frequency excitation technology to the two-wire configuration, resulting in minimal electrical and flow noise in the output signals. The performance in upper flow ranges is comparable to that of conventional magnetic flowmeters, thereby achieving the high levels of measurement accuracy and stability needed for use in control loops.

Their dual-frequency excitation method uses high-frequency switching of the magnetic field combined with high-speed digital processing to execute the complex algorithms required to enhance stability and performance, while at the same time minimising power consumption.
A further performance enhancement is provided by a new coil configuration. Because a two-wire magnetic flowmeter has a limited supply power available, the excitation current supplied to the coils is normally too weak to generate flow signals that can be differentiated from electrical noise. To resolve this problem, Yokogawa has adopted a new high-density coil construction method that enables a stronger magnetic field to be generated with a low current.

The company has also found ways to minimise the noise level by smoothing the liner surface of the measuring tube and developing an electrode system that is immune to noise pickup. As a result, the Admag AXR makes it easy to differentiate signals from electrical noise, thereby achieving a measurement accuracy comparable to that of conventional magnetic flowmeters.

User-friendliness in the new Admag AXR has been enhanced through the addition of a full dot-matrix LCD display capable of displaying messages in six different languages, enabling customisation of the device - by pushbuttons inside or magnetic switches through the display window - without opening the cover, the addition of an electrode adhesion diagnosis function, and a design change that allows the orientation of the converter to be changed on site.

The elimination of the need for a dedicated power-supply unit and power-supply cable has allowed a sharp reduction in instrumentation cost. The lower power consumption of the two-wire instrument also reduces the total cost of ownership.

The Admag AXR is ideally suited to fluid flow measurement in a variety of industries including chemicals, iron & steel, and food & beverages.

Embeded communication module

New embedded communication module reduces development efforts by up to 70%, speeds up time-to-market and minimizes development risk.

HMS Industrial Networks has a new embedded communication module for CompoNet as the latest member of the Anybus CompactCom (Anybus-CC) product family. With the release of the CompoNet module, HMS completes its offer for CIP™ (Common Industrial Protocol) supported networks.

The new module provides device manufacturers with a fast and easy way to connect their automation devices to CompoNet™. The ready-made solution reduces development efforts by up to 70%, speeds up time-to-market and minimizes development risk. Anybus-CC is a family of interchangeable plug-in communication modules supporting 18 different fieldbus and industrial Ethernet technologies. All modules come in a secure housing about the size of a compact flash card. The core of the module is HMS´s NP30 microprocessor. The hardware and software application interface of the Anybus-CC module for CompoNet™ functions in the same manner as all other Anybus-CC modules, therefore, the new module is fully interchangeable with all other active Anybus-CC modules.

CompoNet™ provides users with a bit-level network to control small, high speed machines and CIP™ network services to connect to the plant and the enterprise. As a member of the CIP Networks (DeviceNet™, ControlNet™ and EtherNet/IP™) family, CompoNet fulfills the requirements of applications using large numbers of simple sensors and actuators by providing high speed communication with configuration tools and combining this with efficient construction, simple set-up and high availability – all on a single network.

Coriolis upgrade

Emerson Process Management has upgraded the Micro Motion® 9739 transmitter to include multivariable-digital (MVD™) technology for faster performance and improved measurement accuracy. Existing users are supported with an easy-to-install retrofit kit that provides a convenient and cost-effective upgrade path.

MVD technology is high-speed signal processing, embedded in electronics, to deliver measurement accuracy in the toughest conditions. The front-end digital processing MVD technology offers dramatically reduced signal noise while delivering a faster response time to improve the overall measurement quality.

The RFT9739 transmitter is a popular and well established product with over 100,000 installed worldwide with various Micro Motion Coriolis sensors. The retrofit kit brings the many benefits of MVD technology to their existing 9-wire Coriolis flow and density meters. Easily installed in minutes, the kit utilises the existing housing and avoids the need for any piping or wiring changes.

The new 9739 MVD retrofit kit has the same outputs as the previous RFT9739 transmitters and uses the same base housing, so providing a fast, cost-effective and convenient way to upgrade to MVD technology. Using an existing Micro Motion Coriolis sensor, an upgrade to the 9739 transmitter with MVD will deliver a 2x improvement in turndown for users. The upgrade is also available for field-mounted versions of the transmitter, housed in a NEMA 4X (IP65) enclosure.

The Micro Motion Model 9739 transmitter with MVD technology has ATEX, CSA-US, and UL approvals and is ideally suited for applications ranging from monitoring to process

Electronics Cooling with a difference

Designed for use in MicroTCA applications, the new Compact Cooling Package (CCP) from Rittal has the flexibility and scalability to provide targeted cooling in many rack mounted applications where significant amounts of heat are being generated. Each CCP is capable of removing up to 1200W of heat in an efficient, controlled manner and multiple systems may be distributed within the rack if required.

The 482.6mm (19”) rack mountable CCP comprises a controller managed air/water heat exchanger, 300mm deep, and a 482.6mm fan tray, which can be supplied as a fully wired and piped re-cooling system. Both major components of the CCP are just 1U in height and may be separated by the electronics they are cooling.

Supporting all leading IPMI and Rittal CMC-TC (Computer-Multi-Control Top-Concept) protocols, the CCP can be controlled via a CPU. If a fan breaks down or in the event of extreme air temperatures (96 h at 55°C), the system still remains operational. The use of robust controllers and sensors ensures secure cooling and allows the system to be reliably controlled automatically. Modular and easy to install, the system can be matched to specific, actual cooling needs due to its flexibility. Applications with ambient temperatures of up to 55°C and at 1,800m above sea level are therefore possible.

With the increasing compactness of electronic systems, and MicroTCA systems, power losses of 600 watts and more can be expected per shelf. One Rittal CCP unit will effectively cool two MicroTCA shelves, providing efficient dispersal of heat, and keeping the electronic systems at constant low temperatures by monitoring the internal temperature. Any vertically cooled rackmount electronic systems can benefit from this development, which has the added advantage that systems placed nearer the top of the rack can receive cooling air at the same temperature as those lower down.

Four awards for innovation and excellence

National Instruments has received four awards from leading industry trade publications for hardware and software, as well as an award recognising the company for excellence in business-to-business marketing. Editors and readers from Test & Measurement World, Design News and Control Engineering selected NI X Series multifunction data acquisition (DAQ) devices for PCI Express and PXI Express, the NI wireless sensor network (WSN) platform and the NI LabVIEW NI SoftMotion Module for their technological advancement and innovation. Additionally, the Marketing Leadership Council selected the NI Energising Engineers at NIWeek campaign for its marketing insight and creative use of social media platforms.

Test & Measurement World recognised X Series multifunction DAQ devices for PCI Express and PXI Express as the Best in Test for Data Acquisition for their integration of high-performance analogue, digital and counter/timer functionality onto a single device. Engineers can use NI LabVIEW graphical programming software and NI-DAQmx driver software to customise X Series devices for a variety of test, measurement and control applications.

Design News selected the NI WSN platform as a Golden Mousetrap Best New Products award winner for its complete monitoring solution and software integration abilities. The NI WSN platform was also recognised by Control Engineering with an Engineers’ Choice Award for I/O Systems in Wireless. Additionally, Control Engineering recognised the LabVIEW NI SoftMotion Module with the Engineers’ Choice Award for Design, Simulation, and Diagnostics for its simplification of configuring motion axis settings and implementing custom motion control applications.

The NI marketing team received the Marketing Leadership Council B2B Marketing Communications Award for its achievements in business-to-business marketing communication for its social media campaign executed at NIWeek 2009 (See our Report on this) The team was lauded for its identification of what drives customers to connect and creative use of social media platforms to help users to achieve their goals. (The next NIWeek is scheduled for early August!)

Monday, June 28, 2010

Cryogenic temp measurement

Liquid nitrogen data logging system

MadgeTech’s LNDS, Liquid Nitrogen Data Logging System, is an ultra-low temperature measurement system created specifically for the monitoring of temperature sensitive substances that need to be preserved at cryogenic temperatures.

The LNDS can be mounted to the top or outer of a cryo-shipper or freezer, and the probe sheath can be inserted into the tank. The user can then directly view the internal temperature on the LCD of the logger. Also, a variety of probe sizes are available.

It is easily user programmable with preselected sample rates from between 2 seconds to 24 hours. It features a programmable start time and date, up to six months in advance.

The 8-button membrane keypad and large LCD provides the user with the ability to view the current reading, minimum, maximum, and average statistics, in real-time. The non-volatile memory will retain data even if AC and battery power are lost. Also, the 9-volt battery it runs on is both user-replaceable and cost effective.

The Liquid Nitrogen Monitoring System includes the TCTemp2000 data logger with N.I.S.T calibration certification, thermocouple probe, and 9 volt AC wall mounted power adaptor.

Force link

Kistler introduces a low range 3-component force link.

Kistler force links are widely used in measuring dynamic forces on vibrating tables and quality assurance applications in laboratory and production. The latest addition to the range suits applications requiring a lower measuring range at lower and higher operating temperatures. The new Type 9327C force link has an Fxy measuring range of ±4 kN and Fz of ±8 kN to suit testing of small, precision components and products. The full range now consists of five types covering measuring ranges from ±4 kN to ±150 kN.

The new type has a pre-loaded force link sealed in a robust stainless steel housing measuring only 42 x 42 x 42 mm. The operating temperature range of –40 to +120 degrees Celsius with the option of IP67 protection rating make the force link suitable for a wide range of applications. The rigid construction ensures exceptional crosstalk, hysteresis and linearity performance in tension and compression, irrespective of the point of force application. A compact, robust, multipole connector provides easy connection using a cable standard across the whole of the Kistler range of force links.

The new 3-component force sensor is supplied calibrated ready for immediate use.

De-skew correction

De-skew correction enhances accuracy of oscilloscope-based power measurements

High-frequency power measurements can now be carried out with greatly enhanced accuracy using a de-skew correction signal source, along with voltage and current probes, in conjunction with the /G4 power measurement option on the Yokogawa ranges of digital and mixed-signal oscilloscopes.

Even though power measurement using an oscilloscope is fundamentally less accurate than using a digital power meter, it offers much higher bandwidth. It is particularly suitable for measuring high-frequency switching losses in switched-mode power supplies. It also provides a power measurement capability using a general-purpose product which has other uses, an option that may be more acceptable to users who are not ready to invest in a true power meter or have limited budgets for test equipment.

The de-skew correction signal source is an accessory which is specifically designed to maximise the measurement accuracy of oscilloscopes when they are used for power measurements involving fast switching devices and high-frequency waveforms.

To correctly measure power-supply parameters such as power, impedance, power factor, watt-hours and ampere-hours from the voltage and current under analysis, the voltage and current signals must be applied to the signal input terminals of the oscilloscope with no difference in the transfer time. The signal source corrects the potential delays between voltage and current channels in combination with the auto de-skewing function provided as part of the /G4 option.

The unit produces an output voltage from 0 to 5 V and an output current of 0-100 mA (for low-current measurements) or 0-1 A (for high-current measurements). It has a fall time of approximately 25 ns (low current) or 250 ns (high current). The fixed time difference between voltage and current is 2.3 ± 0.5 ns (low current) or 14.5 ± 1.0 ns (high current). Its power supply of 5 V DC/100 mA is taken from the oscilloscope via a USB cable.

The de-skew correction signal source supports through-type current transformers and a variety of clamp-on current probes.

Teaching resource for AAS

Teaching material resource made available for high resolution continuum source AAS

Recognising the emergence of High Resolution Continuum Source Atomic Absorption Spectrometry (HRCS AAS) into a fully established AAS technique, Analytik Jena has produced a comprehensive package of teaching material for use in higher education. This free resource includes fundamental information, Powerpoint® presentations, videos, two poster presentations and more than 30 reprints from learned journals covering the use of the technique.
It is available from Vince Phelan at Analytik Jena UK.

The HRCS AAS technique was originally developed and patented at the Institute of Analytical Sciences in Berlin, (D) and commercialised by Analytik Jena. A comprehensive 65 page full colour booklet entitled ‘Fundamentals – Instruments and Techniques of Atomic Absorption Spectrometry’ covers the principles and construction of all types of atomic absorption spectrometry, including HRCS AAS, as well as factors that influence the performance and results obtained from different types of instrument.

Powerpoint® presentations in the teaching resource cover the fundamentals and principles of HRCS AAS as well as some HRCS AAS flame applications, such as the determination of trace elements in tungsten, the determination of impurities in Co ore concentrate and the determination of 7 elements in molasses. A video showing the optical path in HRCS AAS is also included.

One of the key messages of this teaching resource is that HRCS AAS is now a well-established technique. This is backed by the inclusion of copies of over 30 papers published over the last 10 years. Papers featuring the HRCS AAS technique have been published in journals including Analytical and Bioanalytical Chemistry, Analytica Chimica Acta, Journal of Analytical Atomic Spectrometry, Journal of Brazilian Chemical Society, Microchemical Journal, Microchimica Acta, Spectrochimica Acta Part B and Talanta, and come from disciplines as varied as oil, coal, biology, food and drink.

A first in coriolis flow

First Coriolis flowmeter with full 2-wire technology (4–20 mA)

Anyone who, in their flow measurement applications, wants to combine the advantages of the Coriolis measuring principle with those of 2-wire technology no longer needs to compromise says a recent release from Endress+Hauser. As a full 2-wire instrument, Promass E TB2 can be integrated into existing plant systems seamlessly and without extra effort.

Previously, Coriolis mass flowmeters were available exclusively with 4-wire technology, and thus with separate supply and signal wire. By using state-of-the-art low-power electronic components, E+H has now succeeded in implementing the Coriolis measuring technology in full two-wire technology – that means consistently in the range from 4 to 20 mA. A few years ago, this would have been inconceivable. The advantages connected with this cannot be overlooked: reduced costs for installation and wiring as well as the seamless integration into existing systems.

Meets all industry requirements
In the chemical and petrochemical industries, 2-wire measuring devices are in high demand, as intrinsic safety is extremely important especially in hazardous areas. Without any compromises, Promass E TB2 meets all of the relevant standards in the process industry such as NAMUR, HART, and SIL. Both, self-monitoring and error diagnostics, for example, are strictly in accordance with the specifications of NE107 (NAMUR). This guarantees a high degree of safety in operation and optimal system availability.

Customer-oriented operating concept
Another outstanding feature of the Promass E TB2 is its innovative, user specific and task orientated operating concept. Operator, maintenance and expert menus can be called up immediately at the touch of a button. Guided parameterization (“Make-it-run” Wizards) guides the user whilst configuring the flowmeter, and “Tool tips” provide additional parameter information. In the event of an error, remedy information is immediately displayed.

Safe and secure data back-up
Promass E TB2 provides data management, data back-up and configuration data transfer to other measuring points via the local display. And in case of servicing, the automatic data back-up via HistoROM enables the fast exchange of measuring electronics and automatic reconfiguration without the need for a new calibration.

Tried-and-tested Coriolis sensor technology
As a tried-and-tested multivariable sensor of the Proline flowmeter family, Promass E simultaneously measures the mass flow, fluid density and temperature. As a result, customers can monitor and control their processes even more accurately. Promass E can be supplied with the line sizes DN 8 to 50. In addition to liquids such as acids, alkalis, and solvents, it also measures all gases flawlessly. The application range extends to a nominal pressure of PN 100 and a process temperature of 140 °C.

Point-of-load regulator

Ultralow VIN DC/DC µModule® Regulator with Onboard 5V MOSFET Gate Drive Delivers 15A from 3.3VIN down to 1.5VIN

The LTM4611, which has been released on Monday 28th June 2010 by Linear Technology, is a complete switch mode DC/DC µModule point-of-load regulator capable of generating its own 5V N-channel MOSFET gate drive for very efficient voltage conversion from 3.3VIN or less to loads as low as 0.8V at up to 15A.

Alternative traditional low input voltage high power switch mode DC/DC converters with N-channel MOSFETs require a second regulator circuit to provide the 5V gate drive needed for logic level MOSFETs. Conversion efficiency for the LTM4611 at full load (15A) is 92% for 3.3VIN to 2.5VOUT.

Applications include systems with only 3.3V, 2.8V or 2.5V as the main power rail such as compact data storage and RAID systems, ATCA and optical networking cards, as well as medical and industrial equipment.

So what is the Story behind the LTM4611?

Background
Many densely populated and sophisticated board designs such as multi-ASIC embedded systems or dual-core single-board computers use an isolated brick to convert a 48V bus to 3.3V as the main power rail. There are several reasons:
    1) With only a 3.3V bus, power consumption of the board (total circuit) can be improved if proper DC/DC point-of-load converters are chosen to convert 3.3V to lower voltages (2.5V, 1.2V, 1.0V, 0.9V) to power DDR memory, FPGA core, transceivers, for example.
    2) Running only one bus line (3.3V) simplifies circuit design by eliminating the requirement for 5V or 12V rails often required to bias higher power DC/DC point-of-load regulator.
    3) Isolated bricks have improved their efficiency in converting 48V to 3.3V even at higher output power and their prices are more attractive than in the past.
The challenge is when the load that is powered from the 3.3V rail requires more than 5A to as much as 12A. Although this requirement seems rare, because of the advancements in FPGAs, processors and ASIC technologies, more designers are relying on these devices to boost performance in smaller circuit boards especially when multiple of them are used in parallel. It is not rare to see applications with 10A load requirement. One recent customer asked for 30A for 1V rail powered from 3.3V input. However, traditional low input voltage high power switchmode DC/DC converters with N-channel MOSFETs rely on a second regulator circuit to provide higher than VIN voltage for MOSFET gate drive which increases layout complexity, size and cost. When 5V is not available, delivering high current to loads from 3.3V input bus is very inefficient and power dissipated will increase the junction temperature of the regulator and surrounding components.
New Solution
The LTM4611 is a complete switchmode DC/DC system-in-a-package point-of-load regulator capable of generating its own 5V N-channel MOSFET gate drive for very efficient voltage conversion from 3.3V or less to loads as low as 0.8V at up to 15A. Conversion efficiencies for the LTM4611 at full load (15A) are 92% for 3.3VIN to 2.5VOUT, 88% for 2.5VIN to 1.5VOUT, and 81% for 1.5VIN to 0.9VOUT. Examples of applications include systems with only 3.3V, 2.8V or 2.5V as the main power bus such as in very compact data storage and RAID systems, ATCA and networking cards as well as medical and industrial equipment. The LTM4611 includes the main DC/DC power circuit and the gate drive circuit which contain inductors, MOSFETs, input and output bypass capacitors and compensation circuitry in a small 15mm x 15mm x 4.32mm LGA (land grid array) package weighing only 2.6g. The device boasts +/-2% total DC output error over temperature, line and load regulation as a result of its architecture, precision reference voltage and differential remote sense amplifier; a very key specification for loads such as FPGAs and ASICS that require better than +/-3% voltage accuracy for their optimum performance. To increase output load to 30A, 45A or 60A, two, three or four LTM4611 DC/DC µModule devices can be paralleled to share current.

Features:

  • Complete DC/DC system-in-a-package regulator with onboard gate driver in 15mm x 15mm x 4.32 mm LGA package
  • Ultra low VIN: 1.5V to 5.5V (6V abs max)
  • 0.8V to 5V output, 15A
  • Differential remote sensing for precision regulation
  • Clock synchronizable from 360kHz to 710kHz

Cryogenic and extreme environments

Sensors Ideal for Cryogenic, Flight Test, HALT/HASS/ESS, and Space Hardware Testing

Meggitt Sensing Systems has announced the global market debut of the Endevco® model 2271A series, an accelerometer family designed for high-reliability vibration and acceleration measurements in cryogenic and other extreme environments.

Available with either 10-32 side connector (model 2271A) or 10-32 top connector (model 2271AM20), the Endevco® model 2271A series is designed to reliably operate over a very wide operating temperature range of -269°C to +260°C (-452˚F to +500˚F) with unusually flat temperature response. Units exhibit excellent output sensitivity and stability over time, with shock survivability to 10,000 g pk. The piezoelectric sensing elements of the model 2271A series are housed in a corrosion-resistant stainless steel case, which is hermetically sealed for use in demanding environments. Signal ground is isolated from the sensor’s outer case. A three-meter (ten-foot) low-noise coaxial cable is supplied for error-free operation. As a self-generating device, the accelerometer family requires no external power source for operation. In addition, select models are eligible for purchase under the Endevco® -R replacement sensor program.

Recommended accessories for the Endevco® model 2271A series include the model 2950 triaxial mounting block; signal conditioner models 133, 2775 or 4990a (Oasis); or the model 2771C in-line charge converter. With its rugged construction and precision accuracy over an extremely wide operating temperature range, the model 2271A series is ideal for use in cryogenic testing; HALT/HASS/ESS; flight test engine monitoring; environmental testing; and space hardware evaluations.