Saturday, August 21, 2010

Digital servo amplifier

Aerotech has launched a new digital servo amplifier with a linear power stage for ultra-high resolution brushed or brushless linear and rotary motion control systems. The new compact ML series amplifier is intended for lower power use but maintains the very high performance characteristics required for nanometre and microradian level precision positioning applications that are acutely susceptible to electrical noise, and where PWM servo amplifiers become unusable. The DSP based ML range is designed for minimal radiated noise to allow the servo system to provide exceptional levels of speed control and in-position stability for ultra-smooth motion profiles, and to ensure negligible interference levels for sensitive processing and measuring equipment.

Aimed at very high resolution motion systems applications as found in NDT, MEMS, vision systems and microscopy but with less dynamic performance requirements, the new amplifier is available in three versions: as the Ndrive ML option for Aerotech's A3200 software only motion controller; as an entry level version of the Soloist™ ML integrated single-axis position controller range; and as a low-cost linear drive stage solution for the multi axis Ensemble™ ML, a networkable and panel mount motion control system.

The basic specifications for the ML series linear amplifiers in all configurations includes 5A continuous/10A peak current rating with a customer supplied DC bus voltage of +/- 40 V and a control supply requirement of 18-36 VDC. A single 16-bit ±10 V analogue input is used for direct interfacing to the motion controller with an ESTOP sense input included.

The ML features primary and secondary incremental encoder interfaces which are optionally equipped with Aerotech's MXH hardware based multiplied encoder technology for up to 65536 times quadrature output. Using a 1V p-p sinusoidal encoder which does not require a costly power supply, this level of multiplication has a 2MHz analogue input frequency that allows nanometre or microradian level resolution across Aerotech's wide range of high precision direct-drive positioning mechanics, without compromise on top speed.

The MXH encoder option also enables the single axis Position Synchronised Output (PSO) feature to be implemented at the highest level. Aerotech's PSO is a powerful algorithmic software tool that precisely coordinates the real-time position from a linear or rotary encoder with high speed output pulses from the controller which are be used to trigger external events.

This feature is widely used in applications such as laser micromachining or position critical NDT where exacting, no compromise synchronisation is required between laser firing or sensor reading and the axis path position.

For the alternative software based MXU encoder version, the encoder interfaces have a 4096 multiplication factor and both MXU and MXH encoder options include end-of-travel limits and home inputs on the primary feedback encoder. An optional I/O expansion board is also available to equip the ML drive with 8 opto-isolated digital inputs and 8 digital outputs (sinking or sourcing) in addition to single 16-bit analog inputs and outputs, and a brake relay output.

As the ML series linear stage amplifier does not include an integrated power supply and the I/O expansion option may not be required for some applications, the drive can be a low cost solution and additionally its small footprint may be advantageous in space restricted OEM applications.

The ML drive's 10A peak current rating will provide more than sufficient power for the majority of micropositioning applications, however where more useful power may be required and in areas where amplifier temperature rise must be kept to a minimum, a water cooled version is available. This version can provide a 35% increase in usable power.

In addition to the ML range, Aerotech also produce linear stage amplifiers with 2 & 3 axis PSO capabilities, integral mains power supplies and built-in I/O and fieldbus interfaces - offering the superb linearity, high bandwidth, zero crossover distortion and ultra-quiet EMC characteristics of the ML series. These control options and higher power versions are available throughout the A3200, Soloist and Ensemble ranges, and in addition Aerotech offer a full complement of PWM stage amplifiers for very high speed and heavy load precision positioning applications.

All of these Aerotech drive technologies may be freely mixed for multi-axis positioning systems ensuring that each axis is cost and performance optimised. A choice of PC-based software-only, rack or panel mounted motion controls in single or multi-axis formats allow optimal performance with diagnostics and comprehensive features that aim to ensure fast product development and commissioning, reduce positioning errors, improve throughput performance and ensure time-saving and quality improving benefits.

Energy track at #ISAwk

Yesterday it was the Automation & Control track, today The International Society of Automation (ISA) announced the offerings of its Energy Track at ISA Automation Week 2010 (Houston 4-7 October 2010)

The Energy Track will explore the Smart Grid, alternative energies, and plant retrofits; and bring to light those technologies and techniques which can make or break the profit line. Presenters of the Energy Track sessions include experts from Siemens Energy, Inc., CyboSoft, 3e Technologies International, Emerson Process Management, Schneider Electric, and others.

Energy Track session titles include:
  • Controls for Energy I
  • Controls for Energy II
  • Energy Security
  • Technology for Energy Generation I
  • Asset Management for Energy Sources and Generation
  • Technology for Energy Generation II
  • Alternative Energy Sources
  • Alarm Management

Outdoor application housing

Rittal’s “System” concept provides a total solution for the housing of sophisticated electronic equipment down to humble connections. The specifically designed range of enclosures is not limited to electrical or electronics use and can provide a waterproof and weatherproof environment for other technologies.

As part of the company’s overall “system” programme, all of the outdoor enclosures include punched sections, for the attachment of a wide variety of standard mounting parts used in the market leading TS 8 cabinet and 19” Racking systems. This allows the accommodation of equipment to IEC 60297 for 19” practice, or for DIN Rail, studs and other methods including mounting plates, which can then be factory pre-assembled for on-site installation.

The global supply of standardised outdoor cabinets ensures that if serious damage occurs in remote locations abroad, there is a local Rittal office and support network, with the knowledge and experience of the widest possible climatic and application requirements, which can rapidly supply replacement parts including doors, panels, hinges and cooling units.

Rittal’s outdoor range includes wall/post mounting and free-standing enclosures in single and double skin, rain canopies, which also provide protection from solar gain and even pre-cast sectional concrete bases to reduce the need for wet concrete on site.

A guide is available to assist in initial product selection depending on the application.

Sensor manufacturing agreements

Flexpoint Sensor Systems have expanded their working relationship with Sensor Products Inc., (SPI). In addition to development and production of “nip sensors,” for Sensor Products, Inc., the Companies continue to explore development of additional products. SPI will continue to market and distribute Flexpoint’s patented Bend Sensors® through their extensive sales, marketing and distribution network.

Flexpoint is working with SPI on the finalization of the nip sensor which they plan to have in production by the end of the year. The nip sensor is utilized to measure actual contact (interfacial) pressure and distribution between two mating or impacting surfaces. These products are analytical tools used in the manufacturing and R&D processes by engineers and technicians. Initial production levels of the sensors are expected to be thousands of units per year.

Sensor Products is a world leader in the niche field of tactile surface pressure and force sensors. Its customized and off-the-shelf systems are installed within virtually all of the Fortune 500 industrial companies.

Flexpoint is currently working on the development of two additional products which have been brought to the Company by SPI. They will also begin to manufacture an additional product under contract for SPI. These products have the potential to significantly increase the production of sensors by the company.

The President of Flexpoint, Clark Mower stated, “We continue to be excited to be involved with Sensor Products, Inc. The relationship has been very synergistic for both companies and we look forward to a long relationship with them as we progress on these and other products.”

Thursday, August 19, 2010

A&C track revealed

ISA Announces the Automation & Control Track at ISA Automation Week 2010 (#ISAwk)

“The Automation & Control track is at the heart of process and control. Attendees at all levels will find a wealth of knowledge to bring them up-to-date on the latest technical information and how they can apply it to their careers,” said ISA Automation Week Technical Program Committee Co-chair Joe Provenzano as The International Society of Automation (ISA) announced the offerings of its Automation & Control Track at ISA Automation Week 2010: Technology and Solutions Event, Tuesday, 5-7 October 2010 in Houston (TX US).

The Automation & Control Track offers in-depth sessions focused on everything from the basics of temperature, pressure, level, and flow to supervisory control and data acquisition (SCADA) and distributed control systems.

Automation & Control Track session titles include:
  • Instrument Implementation
  • Alarm Management Best Practices
  • Enterprise Integration—How and Why to Do It
  • Justifying Technology Selection
  • Loop Tuning. One Size Does Not Fit All
  • Process Control Performance Measurement
  • Advanced Classical versus Model Predictive Control
  • Instrumentation Rules of Thumb
Complete details of each Automation & Control session are now available online.

"The world’s most energy-efficient CO2 sensor module!"

With its unparalleled low power consumption the new EE892 from E+E is a highly impressive CO2 sensor module. Features such as an adjustable measuring interval enable optimum adaptation to specific applications while maintaining an average current consumption of less than 60μA.

This makes the EE892 CO2 sensor module the ideal battery-operated, energy-saving device.

The CO2 sensor module was specially developed for OEM applications and high-volume production.

The digital interface and extremely compact design facilitate clear-cut integration in mobile and energy-sensitive applications such as data loggers or demand controlled ventilation.

The CO2 load cell is based on infrared technology (NDIR) and, thanks to the patented E+E autocalibration process, it is completely maintenance-free. Ageing effects are compensated automatically to guarantee outstanding long-term stability.

The exceptional measuring accuracy and the large measuring range of up to 10,000 ppm make the EE892 the ideal tool for universal and flexible applications. E+E also provides corresponding Application Notes to enable easy integration of the CO2 sensor module in specific customer applications.

E+E products are marketed in Ireland by Instrument Technology.

Unmanned liquid level sensors!

A new miniature range of liquid level sensors for unmanned systems

Gill Sensors
has a new range of miniature fuel, oil and coolant level sensors, planned for launch at AUVSI Unmanned Systems North America 2010 (21/22 Sept 2010 - Denver COL US). The miniature sensors feature their new micro-electronics offering an approximate 50% space saving on the standard electronics and giving greater scope for use on smaller unmanned systems applications.

The new miniature sensors utilize advanced solid-state capacitive technology, with integrated electronics providing a fully configurable analogue output accurate to 0.25% of the tank depth. Each sensor is custom-designed to suit the specific application’s requirements to ensure optimum performance without the need to extensively modify existing system components. This makes the sensors equally suited to vehicle upgrades or for specification on new developments.

The sensors typically feature titanium and carbon-fiber constructions to ensure the mass of the sensor has minimal impact on the vehicle operation. Sensor length can be as little as 20mm, allowing for precision monitoring of small reservoirs.

Environmentally protected to IP68, these miniature sensors are suitable for full-submersion in aviation-grade fuel, oil or coolant and are rated for operation from -40ºC to +125ºC. Each sensor can be designed with integral connector or flying lead, designed to meet the most stringent military EMC requirements.

Data provided by the new miniature level sensors can be used to increase the performance and reliability of unmanned systems, offering engineers greater scope for tactical decisions based on reliable sensor data. Sensors currently supplied by Gill into UAV applications provide flight engineers with reliable data from which they can make informed decisions about the length of flight time, helping to optimize the efficiency of the mission.

As a supplier to some of the world’s leading UAV manufacturers, Gill Sensors has established itself as a leader in the field of liquid level measurement for unmanned systems.

New technology for Hydrogen alarms

Over the last few months Quantitech has supplied DPSS Cabling Services with unique hydrogen specific gas monitors for use at 14 different back up power facilities that utilise uninterruptible power supply (UPS) systems.

UPS equipment is often preferred to diesel generators because it not only provides surge protection, but also eliminates the use of fossil fuels and any associated exhaust related issues. However, lead acid based battery systems have the potential to emit hydrogen if there is any damage or leakage. Hydrogen is a highly dangerous flammable gas, so DPSS has installed the new gas detection technology capable of detecting low levels of hydrogen, even in mixtures of other gases.

DPSS ordered the HY-ALERTA™ 600 version of the hydrogen monitoring technology, which provides hydrogen-specific leak detection and measurement of hydrogen concentrations as low as 4000 ppm and can be scaled to any concentration up to 5% hydrogen by volume. The monitor is designed for either ceiling or wall mount and has no cross sensitivity to other combustible gases, thereby eliminating false positive alarms and ensuring safety system reliability.

DPSS's Jeff Redhead commented, "As specialists in the field of the design, survey and installation of cabling and associated route works, we often provide the support works for UPS systems. This equipment is becoming more common in applications stretching from shopping centres to military installations, so we are delighted that a reliable hydrogen specific technology is available to monitor at the LEL (Lower Explosive Limit) and provide an alarm in the extremely unlikely event of a leak."

The hydrogen detection technology was developed by H2scan, a US based company represented in Britain by Quantitech. Keith Golding is Managing Director at Quantitech. He says. "There are many applications for which hydrogen specific monitoring is important. These cover both health and safety, and process control within a wide variety of industrial applications including petrochemical refineries, hydrogen production, chlorine manufacture, nuclear power/waste, fossil fuel power, chrome plating, research, semiconductor and electronics manufacture, abatement exhausts, transformer oil, fuel cell technologies and of course lead acid battery monitoring."

Miniature high intensity piezoresistive pressure microphone

Meggitt Sensing Systems has introduced the Endevco® model 8510B, a miniature, rugged, high-sensitivity piezoresistive pressure microphone, designed for the precision measurement of high-intensity sound within a variety of demanding environments.

With available ranges of 1, 2 and 5 psig, the Endevco® model 8510B offers a 300 mV full scale output and a range of at least 100 to 190 dB SPL, in a highly rugged four-active arm strain bridge design that is diffused in a sculptured silicon diaphragm. This miniature pressure microphone offers integral temperature compensation from -18°C to +93°C (0 to +200°F), ensuring measurement accuracy over its full temperature range with excellent linearity, even at three times over-range. Units also offer high resonance frequencies for accurate measurements over the full audio range, with five times minimum burst pressure and 20,000 g shock survivability. These technical attributes make the Endevco® model 8510B the industry’s highest performing pressure microphone of its kind on the market today.

The new pressure microphone uses a 10-32 thread (metric threads available on custom order) for convenient mounting within space constrained environments, and also permits flush mounting on flat or contoured surfaces for boundary layer measurements in flight test, wind tunnels and engine inlet acoustic studies. A 30-inch integral cable is standard, with custom lengths available on request. For customer convenience, the model 8510B comes standard with a vent tube, which can be vented to the ambient atmosphere or connected to a standard reference manifold. Recommended for use with the Endevco® model 8510B are the model 136 three-channel signal conditioner, model 4430A signal conditioner, or the model 4990A (Oasis), all available from Meggitt Sensing Systems.

With its exceptional ruggedness, sensitivity and high output characteristics, the Endevco® model 8510B is ideal for use in applications such as blast testing, rocket motor acoustic studies, engine inlet acoustic studies, shock wave studies, chemical reactor monitoring and aerodynamic studies, among others.

Metals analysis

New integrated OES and X-ray solution for rapid and accurate metals Analysis
Thermo Fisher Scientific has launched an integrated solution for the metals industry combining the power of wavelength dispersive X-ray fluorescence (WDXRF) with optical emission spectrometry (OES). The solution optimizes the their ARL OPTIM'X WDXRF slag analyzer in combination with the 3460 Advantage OES metals analyzer. This unique pairing for foundries and metal processing companies offers effective analyses of metallurgic slags and alloys by WDXRF, and quick and accurate investigation of solid metals by OES. With this new Thermo Scientific product offering primary and secondary metals producers are able to utilize two techniques at once and undertake total quality analyses with ease.

Thermo Scientific products offer the most comprehensive systems for the complete analysis of metals and non-metals in iron and steel production. OES provides rapid analysis of carbon and low nitrogen along with all other alloying elements in irons and steel while XRF offers most reliable and repeatable analysis of metallurgical slags, raw materials, including iron ores and sinters and cast irons. In addition, XRF assures high repeatability which makes the technique effective for the control of major elements and expensive alloying elements.

The ARL OPTIM'X spectrometer is a compact, cost effective and reliable XRF solution for all non-metallic samples as well as major and minor elements in metals. As well as providing lowest cost of ownership for a WDXRF instrument with practically no peripheral support (neither internal nor external water cooling, nor compressed air), the ARL OPTIM'X slag analyzer allows quick sample preparation and fast analysis. In addition to common oxides such as CaO, SiO2, MgO, Na2O, Al2O3, S, K2O, Fe2O3, the instrument is capable of analyzing fluorine in slags wherever needed. Slags can be analyzed both as directly cast slags and as pressed pellets after grinding and pelletization. Fusion beads can also be used for ultimate accuracy and control.

The ARL 3460 Advantage spectrometer is one of the most established OES instruments in the metals industry. Based on decades of experience and continuous improvements, this instrument provides an ideal solution for foundries and metal producers. Offering increased reliability and stability, the ARL 3460 Advantage ensures trouble-free operation with minimal maintenance costs over the entire lifetime of the instrument. With optical configuration optimized to cover most of the analytical requirements in a foundry, users benefit from the highest quality technology to ensure improved metals analysis in terms of quality and productivity in addition to low operational costs.

The ARL OPTIM'X and ARL 3460 Advantage are delivered with factory calibrations for immediate operation and use. Both instruments are driven by Thermo Scientific Windows 7-based OXSAS analytical software helping the user quickly learn and operate the two instruments. Comprehensive training can be provided on both instruments after installation eliminating the need for two separate interventions. They can also be fully automated with ARL SMS solutions for on-line unattended analysis when fast 24/7 throughput is required.

Better manage, analyse and report on data

New version of data Management software features GPS synchronisation and sound data playback capabilities

National Instruments has announced NI DIAdem 2010, the latest version of the data management software that helps engineers and scientists better manage, analyse and report on data collected during data acquisition or generated through simulations. The new version of DIAdem features GPS synchronisation, sound data playback and increased offline analysis and reporting capabilities. This combination of features gives engineers and scientists the opportunity to increase the return on their data investment by reducing the time it takes to make decisions from data collected in applications such as automotive, aviation and structural and environmental monitoring.

They integrated customer feedback to design DIAdem 2010 specifically with test and measurement engineers and scientists in mind. With the ability to view GPS information on a map display, DIAdem 2010 provides a new method to interact with and visualise data. It also offers the option to stream map images through a network connection or cache map images locally. To better understand measurements, engineers and scientists can characterise the effect of geographic or environmental context on data acquisition by synchronising measurement and GPS data playback. For example, when conducting in-vehicle data logging, engineers and scientists can take the GPS location of the vehicle into consideration to understand what environmental phenomena, such as an elevation change or intersection encounter, caused the vehicle to decrease in speed.

In addition, DIAdem 2010 now offers sound data playback and increased analysis and reporting capabilities. Engineers and scientists can interact with sound data in a new way by synchronising the playback of sound data with measurement data to hear measurements in action. Also, DIAdem offers the option to automatically convert textual or MathML formulas to graphical math displays to more effectively represent calculations used during analysis. These embedded formulas provide significant value when creating publication-ready reports, with immediate one-click export to the most common printable, shareable report formats including PDF, HTML and Microsoft PowerPoint.

These new features help engineers and scientists save time locating, analysing and reporting results offline. DIAdem 2010 provides a powerful feature set that is optimised for high-speed loading and analysis of large data sets. To receive the most value from test and measurement data, engineers and scientists can combine DIAdem with technologies including the Technical Data Management Streaming (TDMS) file format for data storage and the NI DataFinder for indexing files.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Power station has Triple-Redundant Mark™ VIe DCS on nuclear turbine generator

NextEra Energy Seabrook Station is just 50 miles north of Boston (MA US) on the New Hampshire coast. The total plant output is 31,200 megawatt-hours per day.

Benefits of the Mark™ VIe TMR digital control:
• Reduced maintenance, costs, and downtime
• Increased mean time between failures (MTBF)
• Modern maintenance tools and diagnostics for troubleshooting in real-time
GE Energy has been a partner with the Seabrook Station since 1987. Most recently, the plant upgraded its turbine control system to the Mark™ VIe Triple Modular Redundant (TMR).This modification makes the turbine generator more reliable and easier to maintain, reducing the number of forced outages and power reductions.

The end result of this upgrade is that it makes existing power generation and delivery systems more reliable, thereby reducing the overall cost to produce power.

GE Energy supplied all control equipment, engineering, drawings, technical direction, start-up, and commissioning for the new turbine control system. The scope also included a simulation trainer for the equipment supplied, on-site training, and spare parts.

The new Mark VIe TMR digital control system replaced the old analog system and provides a road map for maintainability into the future. The Mark VIe TMR eliminates single points of failure with mechanical devices in the Front and Mid Standards by modifying speed picks, trip interface, and thrust. The upgrade includes trip reduction software, which eliminates the need for online overspeed testing. System redundancies also further eliminate single points of vulnerability and reduce downtime.

Middle east expansion

Company seeks new partners to support demand for GPC

PPCL, formerly, Curvaceous Software Limited, the award-winning British company, is seeking new partners in the Middle East to support demand for its Geometric Process Control (GPC) technology product, CVE 2.5, and the no-maths model-building capabilities of its process modeller (CPM) and Response Surface Visualisation (CRSV) products.

Following the company’s expansion into North America and The Republic of China the Middle East is its next target. The company will have an active presence at two large events in the region later this year: the 2nd Annual World Refining Technology Summit & Exhibition (1st - 2nd November 2010 Abu Dhabi UAE); and the 15th Annual ERTC Meeting (29th November – 2nd December 2010 Istanbul TK).

Robin Brooks, Managing Director of PPCL says: “We’re seeing new markets for our unique product suite develop and are extending our focus into the Middle East. We are working to further extend our partner programme in 2010 and welcome approaches from experienced salespeople who can add to our offer, particularly in the petrochemical, oil, gas and batch chemicals markets.”

Vision for non specialists

‘Point And Click’ access to unique vision tools for non-specialists

Access to unique imaging tools in Stemmer Imaging's Common Vision Blox (CVB) imaging toolkit, is now possible through DALSA’s advanced Sherlock imaging software. This powerful combination brings unique tools such as CVB’s Manto, Minos and GigE Server into a ‘point and click’ platform that can be readily used by non-programmers. The new combination also allows Sherlock to operate in conjunction with GigE cameras from all manufacturers.

Designed for use with Dalsa’s Vision Appliance packages that encompass both smart camera and multipoint compact vision systems, this software allows automated image inspection and measurement solutions to be built for any industry. The new platform means that it is no longer necessary to be an experienced programmer or developer to utilise unique imaging tools offered by CVB, such as the neural technology-based Manto for pattern recognition and the identification of objects with organic fluctuations in their composition, and Minos for flexible and reliable high speed and high accuracy object recognition, alignment, optical character recognition and verification.

In addition, Sherlock has access to CVB’s unique GigE Vision Server, which enables the computer on which it is installed to behave like a complete GigE Vision and GenICam compatible camera, with freely configurable features. This offers endless possibilities for creating network-based vision solutions based on GigE Vision, including off-line application development while receiving on-line test images. Here, it is used to make on-line measurements and simultaneously a remote PC equipped with Sherlock can connect to the on-line system to collect real image data to allow the measurement process to be monitored and refined without affecting the current inspection.

The new platform brings full GigE Vision and GeniCam compatibility to Sherlock, allowing the use of any GigE Vision-compliant cameras. Ring buffering and double buffering allows faster image processing and ensures that more images are processed when a series of images is acquired at high speed. A free CVB licence is available with every camera purchased from STEMMER IMAGING.

RF power

Fast, accurate RF power measurements in a compact Solution

Linear Technology has introduced the LTC5587, an industry first 40dB dynamic range 6GHz RMS detector integrated with a high sampling rate 12-bit serial A/D converter. The digital output RMS RF detector provides +/-1dB measurement accuracy of high crest-factor signals, independent of the modulation used. The detector is capable of operating over a wide frequency range from 10MHz to 6GHz. The integrated 12-bit ADC captures and digitizes the detector measurement at a rate of up to 500k samples/second and delivers the data via a bit stream over a serial SPI port. The RF detector operates with single-ended input and requires no external balun transformer. Its small 3mm x 3mm DFN package provides a highly compact solution.

The LTC5587's +/- 1dB accuracy over a 40dB dynamic range and over the full temperature range from -40°C to 85°C offers best-in-class performance. Combined with a 12-bit A/D converter, the device provides 0.014dB per bit measurement resolution. Its low power consumption is ideal for applications in cellular basestations, picocells, and femtocells supporting all standards including LTE, W-CDMA, TD-SCDMA, CDMA/2k, GSM/EDGE and WiMAX. Other applications include MIMO radios, repeaters, point-to-point microwave links, military radios with complex modulation, remote power measurements, and portable test and measurement instruments. The detector is particularly useful in FPGA-based systems where no A/D converters are available.

The LTC5587 is powered from a single 3.3V supply. During sampling mode, its total operating current is 3mA, consuming only 10mW of power. Its consumption is further reduced by one-half when the ADC is idled, making the LTC5587 suitable for battery powered or portable remote RF measurement systems. The device also has shutdown capability, drawing less than 10uA supply current when disabled. The LTC5587 is offered in a small 3mm x 3mm 12-pin DFN package, providing a compact solution footprint.

Monday, August 16, 2010

New partner announced for technology event

Wind River is an ISA Automation Week partner
Wind River has become an ISA Automation Week 2010 Partner. ISA Automation Week 2010 will be held 4-7 October 2010 in Houston (TX US).

“ISA’s members and customers attend ISA Automation Week to immerse themselves in comprehensive technical information, and to see the latest trends in the design, deployment, and integration of complex manufacturing systems and processes,” said Jennifer Infantino, ISA Corporate Partnerships manager. “Our partners represent top companies in the industry, and through this program, they can engage in meaningful dialogue with current and future customers and offer solutions for the challenges they’re facing in their plants. Wind River is a key partner to ISA, and their innovations will greatly benefit ISA members and customers attending our upcoming show.”

Wind River is uniquely positioned within the embedded industry with its comprehensive software portfolio, which includes industry-leading operating systems, runtime technologies, development tools and an embedded test management solution, as well as industry-specific solutions. As the trends of machine-to-machine connectivity and tighter security regulations amplify across industries, their solutions enable companies to meet stringent real-time determinism requirements while taking advantage of the flexibility and cost benefits of open standards. For developers exploring technologies such as multi-core and embedded virtualization for the next generation of industrial devices, the company offers a broad set of integrated multi-core software solutions for multiple hardware architectures serving specific vertical industry needs. Additionally, Wind River’s solutions are supported by global support and services and a rich partner ecosystem.

“Understanding how to embrace rapidly evolving machine-to-machine connectivity as well as managing new safety and security requirements emerging globally are now critical elements to the control and process automation market segments,” said Jens Wiegand, general manager of industrial and medical solutions at Wind River. “Wind River is honored to engage with ISA Automation Week conference attendees in order to help them master the challenges of building secure, connected devices.”

Gas over oil pipeline actuator

The Shafer SH Series is designed for high reliability with a long service life and is ideally suited to critical applications

Emerson Process Management's Shafer™ SH Series of gas-over-oil valve actuators are ideally suited to automate valves used for gas transmission as well as at compressor stations, gathering plants, storage facilities, meter runs and many other applications. Designed for fifty years of operation, the actuator has a 15 year seal life and a ten year, industry-leading warranty.

The SH series actuator is operated by hydraulic oil, pressurised by the pipeline gas. Powering the actuator with oil prevents the internal corrosion associated with other actuator designs. The actuator is designed so that the gas is contained within two tanks, half filled with hydraulic oil. Contaminants and moisture in the gas settle to the bottom of the tank where they can be easily drained.

The actuators can be used for standard on/off service or as part of an Emergency Shutdown System (ESD). Three sizes of SH are available to suit DN 50 to 200 (2” to 8”) valves with a torque range between 254 Nm and 2034 Nm. Torque is evenly applied across the whole range of movement, making the SH Series ideal for plug and blowdown valves. The compact actuator package is operated by solenoid valves which are factory piped, ready for operation. A switch box provides open/closed feedback to the operator.

The helical spline technology contained within the actuator does not cause stem side loading, which other designs can be prone to do. Stem side loading can cause premature packing or seal wear and leakage. The SH series is powered by pipeline gas in the pressure range of 27.5 bar to 103 bar. It is also possible to operate the actuator manually when required, for example during commissioning or in situations where pipeline pressure is not available.

Maintenance requirements are minimal; the drain valve in the tanks needs to be opened periodically to remove the contaminants and water that have settled out of the gas. This should normally only be necessary once a year.

PSU has digital remote control

The new CPX400DP is the latest in the CPX series of PowerFlex regulated power-supply units from TTi, and is the first to incorporate digital remote control interfaces.

Based around the power electronics of the widely adopted CPX400A unit, the new supply incorporates important new manual control features in addition to the digital interfaces. These include settings lock, isolated voltage tracking, and synchronous switching of the two outputs.

To achieve maximum flexibility for remote control applications, RS-232, USB, GPIB and LAN (Ethernet) interfaces are all provided as standard. The LAN interface is compliant with LXI (LAN eXtensions for Instrumentation).

The TTi PowerFlex design offers a constant-power capability allowing higher output current at lower output voltages. Each output can provide 60 V at a maximum current of 7 A. As the voltage setting is reduced the output current capability increases up to a maximum of 20 A.

The CPX400DP is a dual-output supply with two completely independent and isolated outputs, each with a 420 W capability. The outputs operate in constant-voltage or constant-current mode with automatic crossover and mode indication. Isolated voltage tracking allows easy control for either series or parallel wiring, enabling up to 120 V or 40 A to be produced.

The power supply uses true analogue controls, but incorporates an S-lock function which transfers control of voltage and current from the analogue controls to internal digital circuitry for stability and safety.

Each output has its own on/off switch, but an additional synchronous on/off switch can be used to ensure that both outputs are operated together, an important function for circuitry that can be damaged if one voltage rail is present without the other.

The CPX400DP is housed in a compact and robust steel case which is half-rack width and takes up very little bench space. It measures 210 × 130 × 350 mm and weighs 7 kg. A rack kit is available that can mount one or two units.