Saturday, February 19, 2011

European certification for Mexican entity

The ABB Safety Execution Center (SEC) in San Luis Potosi, and Mexico City, (MX) has been certified by TÜV as having in place and applying a Functional Safety Management System (FSMS) for delivery and implementation of safety system projects in accordance to international industry standards.  These standards include IEC 61508 and IEC 61511 for integration and implementation of safety instrumented systems (SIS).

ABB currently has more safety centers with TÜV certification for Functional Safety Management System (FSMS) delivery and implementation than any other supplier in the industry. These centers are located in every region of the world. Thirteen of ABB’s Safety Execution Centers have been certified by TÜV Rheinland, one of the leading world specialists in the assessment and certification of organizations and products to safety standards. Ten additional SECs are currently working towards TÜV certification.

The company's proven methodology for delivering safety systems meets international standards and best practices, and ensures consistent, flawless execution of these projects all over the world.

In Mexico, ABB’s Oil and Gas business has implemented numerous safety systems for emergency shutdown (ESD) and Mitigation of Fire and Gas (F & G), primarily in refineries, marine terminals, drilling rigs and production for Cantarell field and KU-MALOOB-ZAAP in the Campeche Sond. Interlock Systems were also implemented in ethylene oxide plants; the largest installed base is in the Cadereyta refinery with 20 emergency shutdown systems and 20 systems for Fire and Gas.

“This certification is a great advantage for our customers when making decisions, by providing the assurance of a neutral certification organization that ABB develops and run their systems according the international standards”,
said Daniel Galicia, Country Manager of ABB in Mexico, Central America and the Caribbean.  "This is another example of the priority given by ABB to our customers when it comes to safety, services and products to ensure that safety in its plants and in its operations will never be compromised.”

TÜV certification recognizes that ABB’s functional safety management system complies with international standards and best practices for its products, engineering and project teams and installation methods. It meets all relevant sections of international standards IEC 61508 and IEC 61511 for integration and implementation of safety instrumented systems (SIS), including system configuration, application programming, test and front end safety consulting for specific industrial safety applications.

ABB has been at the forefront of safety system development and delivery since 1979, when it commissioned the first emergency shut down system on the Statfjord B offshore oil platform in the North Sea. ABB commemorated its 30 years of extensive safety experience in 2009; these solutions have protected literally generations of personnel and processes.

Friday, February 18, 2011

Level switch

New reverse assembly option for LBFS frequency-sweep level switch
The new standard version of Baumer’s LBFS level switch is made from AISI 304 or 316 stainless steel and comes with a PEEK sensor tip. In addition to this, Baumer now provides the LBFS with special G½ process connections for reverse assembly. These options broaden the field of possible applications of the LBFS. Based on the novel frequency-sweep technology, the level switch is suitable for measuring the levels of viscous or dry substances as well as liquids with a repeatability and hysteresis of ± 1 mm and a typical response time of 0.2 seconds. As the LBFS is unaffected by flow, turbulence, bubbles, foam, and suspended solids, it is particularly suitable for level detection in processes generating those.

The new G½ connection for the LBFS allows for two types of reverse assembly. The first makes it possible to mount the level switch from the inside of a tank using the included fibre gasket and a G½ nut. Fields of application include low level and leakage detection in tanks for oil or cooling fluid used in pneumatic systems or high-speed cutting (HSC) machines.

The second reverse assembly option enables the LBFS to be mounted in a simple G½ thread inside a tube to extend the length of the sensor. A fibre gasket and an M12 plug or 5-metre cable are included with the measuring device. With the tube functioning as an adjustable extension rod, the LBFS can be adjusted to changing levels. This makes it possible to use the LBFS as a float-type level switch in applications such as automatic dosing systems as well as for phase separation in the petroleum industry, hydraulic systems, and water/wastewater treatment. 

Security recognition secured!

Wurldtech’s Achilles Satellite™ Gains Formal Recognition for Use in ISASecure EDSA Communications Robustness Testing

The ISA Security Compliance Institute (ISCI) announced that Wurldtech received formal recognition for ISASecure Test Suites in their Achilles Satellite network robustness testing platform Level 2 Build 3.3.16344for inclusion in the ISASecure™ EDSA (Embedded Device Security Assurance) Certification program. The Achilles Satellite is the first network test tool recognized for use by ISASecure accredited labs to perform the Communication Robustness Testing (CRT) portion of embedded device security certifications.

The ISASecure EDSA Certification consists of three elements: a device Functional Security Assessment (FSA), a device Communication Robustness Test (CRT), and an organizational Software Development Security Assessment (SDSA).

ISCI’s technical team evaluated ISASecure test suites in the Achilles Satellite test platform against published ISASecure EDSA Communication Robustness Test (CRT) specifications in accordance with ISO/IEC Guide 65 conformance scheme procedures and determined that the tool’s test capabilities satisfied testing requirements necessary to gain formal recognition.

“The Achilles test suites continue to play an important role in improving the network resiliency and robustness of global critical infrastructures,"
said Dr. Nate Kube, Wurldtech CTO. “Our collaboration with ISCI raises the bar once again, providing industrial stakeholders with additional criteria for verifying and validating resilient industrial control systems,” he concluded.

"Wurldtech made ISASecure a priority and worked collaboratively with our technical evaluation team to ensure that all ISASecure CRT specifications were fully addressed while meeting some pretty aggressive project timelines," stated Andre Ristaino, ISCI managing director.  "We are pleased with the outcome."

Data acquisition software for Windows 7

Windmill Software's new data acquisition software suite for Windows 7 64- and 32-bit, Vista and XP.

Windmill 7 software lets users read and control up to ten devices over RS232, RS422, RS485 and Modbus. The software comprises ready-to-run applications to chart and log data, control analogue and digital outputs, monitor the com port and send data directly to Excel.

The new software is offered  at an introductory price of £50 (60 Euros or $80) - a 65% discount on older versions of the software. Technical support for life is included in the price, and there is a money-back guarantee if the software doesn't live up to expectations.

Windmill works with instruments communicating with ASCII or binary messages. With a flexible approach to extracting data values, it is suitable for collecting readings from the majority of serial instruments which can be plugged into the computer's com port. These include PICs, power meters, digital indicators, multimeters, data loggers, GPS receivers, gyro compasses, motion sensors, gas analysers, pH transmitters, particle analysers and laboratory scales.

Users have the freedom to mix and match equipment from many different manufacturers in many combinations. For example, serial devices from A&D, Bruël & Kjær, Dataq Instruments, Datel, Datataker, Denver, Garmin, Mettler Toledo, Microchip Technology, Motorola, Molyteck, Newmar, Nu-Metrics, Omnistar, Omron, Orion, Parallax, Sartorius, Siemens and Texas Instruments have all been handled by Windmill. Many channels of data can be accepted from each instrument.

Also included in the package is a program to monitor com port communications. This lets users see all bytes sent and received, even non-printing characters like carriage returns. This is crucial when dealing
with binary data. Called ComDebug, the software also shows the state of the input and output lines to the computer's com port.

Metering rubberised asphalt

Micro Motion® high temperature ELITE® Coriolis flowmeters enable accurate and reliable measurement of extremely abrasive high temperature, high viscosity fluid

BearCat Pumps of Phoenix, (AZ US) is using Micro Motion ELITE® high temperature Coriolis mass flowmeters  as part of its metering systems for rubberised asphalt, an extremely abrasive, high temperature and high viscosity fluid. The Micro Motion meters enable accurate and reliable measurement of the difficult-to-handle fluid.

“Pumping rubberised asphalt is a very challenging application that combines heat, pressure and an abrasive material,”
said Kevin T. Hill, President, BearCat Pumps. “Our experiences with other technologies have confirmed Micro Motion high temperature Coriolis meters as the best choice, as they consistently deliver the accurate readings our customers demand.”

There are two stages in the rubberised asphalt production process where material is blended and then mixed. Measurement accuracy is critical to ensure the correct blend ratios are maintained. BearCat previously used mechanical gear pumps for flow measurement, but the abrasive asphalt caused wear in the pumps, which allowed measurement accuracy to drift.

The company solved this problem by incorporating a Micro Motion high temperature Coriolis meter into its metering systems, which also include a pump and a relief or bypass valve. At start-up, heat and pressure are applied to the relief valve and sensor allowing the asphalt to circulate. The sensor of the Coriolis meter is heated using heat-jacketed surfaces that are connected to the existing heating circuit and the complete sensor is then wrapped with an insulating cover.

Developed for harsh environments, the Micro Motion meter is suitable for process temperatures up to 350ºC. Its transmitter can be mounted remotely to protect it from the heat, and the sensor can be installed anywhere with no flow conditioning or straight pipe run required. With no moving parts, the Micro Motion flowmeter requires no maintenance or repair.

To ensure accurate measurements are maintained, the Micro Motion ELITE range features in-line meter verification. This capability enables BearCat’s customers to check the sensor tubes and electronics against original factory settings while the meter is in line and the process is flowing,

These features make the Micro Motion ELITE high temperature Coriolis meters especially suited to the harsh operating environments associated with pumping asphalt. Other applications include high temperature processes such as the handling of heavy crude, bitumen, monomers, polymers, wax and cooking oils that are difficult to control and keep below a set temperature limit.

Very low profile illuminated switch

Foremost Electronics has announced the launch of the Marquardt 3006 series of low profile, short-travel, LED Illuminated TACT switches.

The 3006 TACT switch series offers users a superb tactile “feel” using Haptic technology. Haptics is a tactile feedback technology that takes advantage of the user's sense of touch to provide reassuring or relevant feedback on operation of the switch. Common uses of Haptics are arcade games and home games consoles and controllers, frequently taking the form of vibration or force-feedback in joysticks and controllers.

The key to the advanced design of the 3006 TACT switch family is a damped snap action disc, a mixture of switching mat and snap action disc, which allows very flat control elements with a fine tactile response and a clear user feedback signal with minimum travel. The design of the LED illumination makes backlit symbols (pictograms) visible even at night.

The 3006 series short-travel TACT switch has a very low profile at just 3.95mm while still providing a 1.1mm actuator travel and is the only SMD mountable switch of its size with integrated LED illumination, damping and dust protection to IP50. The contacts are single pole, normally closed and 5 colours of LED are available as standard with other colours and non-illuminated versions available at special request. The definition of the LED colour provides an exclusive low ambient light design.

Other features include; standard actuation force of 4N with other actuating forces available on request, user defined tactile pressure point and a large actuation surface. Switch life expectancy is greater than 500,000 cycles and operating temperature range is -40 °C to +95 °C.

Alan Cook
, managing Director of Foremost Electronics comments; "This high quality, high reliability TACT switch manages to combine a very low profile, even with an integrated LED, while offering a remarkably long actuation travel and superb tactile response for users.”
Applications for the Marquardt Mechatronik GmbH 3006 TACT switch family include low profile control panels, multi-function switches, car steering wheel switching systems, medical products and as individual switching elements.

Next generation remote management data center!

Intellicom, part of the HMS Networks group, is proud to announce the next generation of Netbiter® Argos 3.0 datacenter and server. It includes new important and very useful features that improve the Netbiter Argos experience.

The user interface of Netbiter Argos will be expanded to support a Graphical dashboard user interface for the Netbiter EasyConnect products. This powerful function enables users to create a graphical layout describing a remote system. The dashboard includes functions for loading pictures into the layout, analog and digital graphical components (such as gauges, meters, indicators, etc.), which makes it possible to describe a remote system with a visual layout that is easy to understand.

The Netbiter Argos navigation menu has been improved and is now more logical and easy to use. It has also been updated with lots of online help that guides the user.

“The new Netbiter Argos datacenter provides new opportunities for anyone who wants to be in control of their remote sites in an easy way. The graphical dashboard editor is a major step forward to visualize the remote site with a simple drag and drop method”,
says Henrik Ebeklint, Managing Director Intellicom Innovation AB.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Cabling for industrial data networks

Harting can now offer a comprehensive range of ProfiNet-compliant cabling solutions for industrial data networks, including packages based on the recently introduced Ha-VIS preLink® system.
The range incorporates profile-specific cabling based on standardised industrial and automation protocols, including ProfiNet. The Harting ProfiNet cabling portfolio comprises types A, B and C ProfiNet cables, connectors such as RJ45 and M12, and accessories such as panel feed-throughs and hybrid interfaces for simultaneously supplying devices with dHartingata and voltage.

The Ha-VIS preLink® solution package is based on the structured cabling concepts defined by the ISO/IEC 11801 and 24702 standards for industrial premises cabling. Unlike profile-specific cabling, this portfolio is always executed with eight wires.

Harting's Ha-VIS preLink® is a universal cabling system that supports standardised interconnection technology across the boundary between the industrial automation and office IT sectors. As a result, it opens up completely new possibilities for ProfiNet by allowing structured cabling up to the automation 'island', passing the data services seamlessly on to the automation solution.

The PNO (Profinet user organisation) has already recognised these benefits, and has approved the Harting structured cabling solutions in ProfiNet Conformance Classes A and B.

Approved valve service in Scotland

Emerson Process Management has recently appointed Excel Engineering Services as an Approved Repairer of Fisher® products for workshop-based repairs. This Scottish company based in Whitburn specialises in the repair and refurbishment of all types of industrial valves, fully reconditioned and tested to API 527 Standard.

Only companies that meet the highest technical, quality and business standards are appointed as workshop-based Approved Repairers of Fisher products and each company is subject to a stringent vetting process and quality audit. As part of the scheme, technical personnel from Excel have completed specialised Fisher valve maintenance training and all repairs will be completed to factory specifications using only genuine Fisher parts.

As an Approved Repairer, engineers from Excel have access to original Fisher factory specifications, maintenance instructions and service reference manuals, ensuring that repairs are completed to the highest standards. The company is accredited to ISO 9001 and is an approved testing station.

Commenting on the appointment, Bob Burndred, Emerson’s Manager, Fisher Repair Associates Europe said, “We are delighted to appoint Excel Engineering Services as an Approved Repairer. Their background and experience makes them an ideal organisation to become part of this important customer support initiative.”

“Our extensive knowledge of valve types and applications supported by a fully equipped workshop and machine shop provides an ideal platform for our appointment as an Approved Repairer of Fisher valves,” said John Ogilvie, Operations Manager at Excel Engineering Services.

Emerson will continue to provide on-site valve services, including control valve diagnostic testing and data analysis. These are part of Emerson’s extensive PlantWeb™ services offering, enabling customers to maximise the benefits they get from their investment in process and control assets.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Facility for comprehensive training in water and gas monitoring

Analytical Technology now offers specialist customer training at its state-of-the-art premises in Saddleworth, Manchester (GB). The new training facility is part of their extensive after-sales support, which also includes maintenance services and in depth on-site training. The customised sessions educate customers on all aspects of chemistry relating to the company’s complete range of water and gas monitoring equipment, while also providing practical hands-on training on working instrumentation.

With the launch of its dedicated training sessions, incorporating leading technologies and industry experts, Analytical Technology has responded to industry demand for increased training to deal with disinfection issues and other emergencies that can occur at water treatment plants. As a leading provider of water and gas monitoring instrumentation to major utility, manufacturing and processing companies in Britain and Europe, Analytical Technology is ideally positioned to offer professional training on the use of key technologies. Experts provide personalised, practical training to small groups of customers aimed at educating them on the use of the latest, most advanced water and gas monitoring technologies. The customised training is ideal for customers looking for very detailed training on the chemistry of disinfection and overall water quality and how their monitors can be applied.

The training facility is fully equipped with Analytical Technology’s breakthrough water monitors for dissolved oxygen, residual chlorine, dissolved ozone, pH, conductivity, dissolved ammonia, dissolved sulphide and residual sulphite measurements. The company’s innovative toxic gas leak detectors are also available on site. By providing this specialist training, companies can now benefit from trained employees that are well equipped with the knowledge and skills to overcome problems or emergencies that may occur on site.

In addition to the training offered at the Saddleworth facility, Analytical Technology also offers on-site and free-of-charge product specific customer training, as well as in-house training workshops at its customers’ premises and at councils. The workshops are designed to provide advice on implementing processes and instrumentation to ensure environmental safety and compliance with regulatory requirements, all while minimising costs.

Garry Tabor, Sales Manager Europe at Analytical Technology, comments: “At Analytical Technology, we are committed to offering first class customer service and extensive after sales support to our customers, which has led to the opening of a state-of-the-art training facility. These personalised training sessions are part of our dedicated service and demonstrate our willingness to go ‘the extra mile’ for our customers.”

Elegant and cost-effective monitoring of roller gap separation

Measuring the gap between rollers, or checking parallelism to close tolerances is an essential requirement in a number of precision manufacturing processes. A measurement task that can be achieved using an RDP E725 digital indicator in combination with a pair of LVDTs.

Thanks to the E725’s capability to accept inputs from two separate transducers, in this case LVDTs of the same type and range, the indicator can be set to display individual readings, the average of both, or to check the difference to determine how parallel the rollers are. In some situations there can be an analysis requirement to switch between these different sets of readings, which is achievable thanks to the E725’s RS232 serial communication interface. Alternatively individual E725 amplifiers and LVDTs can measure gaps on either side of the roller and use the device’s 4 – 20mA signal as input to a PLC programmed to act in response to the gaps measured. It is normally unacceptable for rollers to be driven in contact with each other so a spacer is inserted between them for the purpose of zeroing. The E725 can be programmed to take account of the spacer size and return a reading that is corrected for the spacer size.

T&M tutorials on video!

Click to see videos!
Keithley Instruments has produced a series of four new tutorial videos on topics related to configuring and operating one of its most sensitive measurement instruments. The videos, which range from one to four minutes in length, focus on the Model 6517B Electrometer /High Resistance System and can be downloaded and viewed on their YouTube site.

The titles of the new videos are:

  • How to Enable Humidity and Temperature Measurements.

  • How to Set Up the Model 6517B Electrometer for a Staircase Voltage Sweep

  • How to Make a Proper Low Current Measurement

  • How to Enable the Meter Connect Feature on the Model 6517B Electrometer

  • The 5-1/2-digit Model 6517B Electrometer/High Resistance Meter offers accuracy and sensitivity specifications unmatched by any other meter of this type. It also offers a variety of features that simplifies measuring high resistances and the resistivity of insulating materials. With reading rates of up to 425 readings/second, the Model 6517B is also significantly faster than competitive electrometers, so it offers a quick, easy way to measure low-level currents. It is well-suited for making accurate low current and high impedance voltage, resistance, and charge measurements in areas of research such as physics, optics, nanotechnology, and materials science. A built-in ±1kV voltage source with sweep capability simplifies performing leakage, breakdown, and resistance testing, as well as volume and surface resistivity measurements on insulating materials.

    As intuitive as smartphones

    Weiss develops an intuitive user interface for its mechatronic products.

    In pursuing its development strategy for mechatronic products, Weiss GmbH is placing more emphasis on the intuitive operation and easy configuration of its components and systems. As a leading supplier of rotary indexing tables and automation components for many years, Weiss regards this decision as a logical extension of its commitment to product development in the recent decades.

    In the past the company has devoted considerable effort to meeting global requirements for automation, developing solutions that offer high yield efficiency combined with high versatility and reusability to allow them to be quickly and easily reconfigured for new product versions without long setup or conversion times. This objective was attained by the interdisciplinary integration of the company’s expertise in various processes and capabilities. The merger of these different disciplines – mechanical engineering, electrical engineering and information technology – has led to the development of products featuring extremely high performance combined with complexity and sophistication.

    “Right from the start, we focussed on developing intelligent components, with products that can properly handle one-off lots while at the same time offering ease of use for operators lacking interdisciplinary skills and easy integration into operational processes. With regard to a self-explanatory, intuitive operator interface for a complex technology, we more or less took our cue from smartphones”, according to Uwe Weiß, managing partner of the company.

    The company developed its own application software, dubbed ‘WAS’ for ‘Weiss Application Software’, to provide an elegant solution to the requirements for the human–machine interface – an intelligent, Windows-based user interface for generating and configuring motion control programs for all Weiss user-programmable products. In a manner of speaking, the engineering effort normally necessary for integration has already been provided by the software.

    WAS is especially beneficial for small and medium-size manufacturers of special-purpose machinery, who up to now have been compelled to outsource the development of control programs due to the absence of in-house expertise in this complex subject. WAS makes it easy for them to set up Weiss’ automation components themselves, either by entering paths, angles and ramps directly or by using the handy teach-in mode. WAS also supports large-scale users of Weiss components by helping them to reduce programming effort and thereby reduce the life cycle cost (LCC) of the system. Weiss’s user-programmable components drastically reduce the engineering effort necessary for initial configuration or reconfiguration to only 1 to 2 man-days.

    Weiss’ product philosophy and commitment to ease of use also support firms that wish to satisfy the needs of their customers with regard to flexibility and output without being forced to maintain multidisciplinary expertise in house for this purpose. It also protect these firms against unforeseen costs during the integration of Weiss components into their systems.

    Mining order from Chile

    Automation and power to maximize energy efficiency at Codelco’s new open pit copper mine
    ABB has won an order worth $47 million from Corporacion Nacional del Cobre de Chile (Codelc0), the world’s biggest copper producer, to provide gearless mill drives and electrical systems to increase productivity and lower energy consumption at a new mine in northern Chile.

    Codelco’s major investment includes a new open pit mine and concentrator that is expected to produce 170,000 metric tons of fine copper per year. The Mina Ministro Hales mine is scheduled to start production in 2013 and will be located 6 kilometers north of Calama, at an altitude of 3,000 meters, in the Atacama desert.

    ABB’s gearless ore-crushing mill drives are more reliable and energy efficient than traditional mill systems, providing increased productivity. The scope of supply includes three drive systems, one 12 megawatt (MW) system and two 8.9 MW systems. In addition, the order includes 220 kilovolt (kV) gas insulated switchgear, and three containerized rooms to house 23kV gas insulated switchgear, auxiliary services and power transformers as well as project engineering, installation and training.

    “Our comprehensive automation and electrical infrastructure offerings, combined with industry specific expertise, help our customers establish a strong foundation for energy efficiency as well as increase reliability and productivity,” said Veli-Matti Reinikkala, head of ABB’s Process Automation division. “ABB pioneered the development of gearless mill drives that address the production challenges faced by mine operators.”

    The world’s first gearless mill drive was delivered by ABB in 1969 and is still in operation providing cost-effective, energy-efficient performance with proven long-term reliability.

    Precision power analyser offers innovative measurement functions

    The Yokogawa WT1800 precision power analyser is the latest addition to the company's highly successful range of digital power measuring instruments.

    Replacing the WT1600, an industry standard for many years, the WT1800 offers innovative measurement functions which benefit the engineer with electrical power and efficiency measurements in a range of industries from inverter and drive design to alternative energy systems.

    "Both the traditional power generation and distribution sectors and the emerging alternative energy markets are placing increased emphasis on energy saving and efficiency, while manufacturers of equipment from industrial drives to washing machines are also looking at optimising energy performance with the resultant economic and environmental benefits", says Terry Marrinan, Sales & Marketing Director for Europe & Africa with Yokogawa's Test & Measurement Business Unit: "Yokogawa's history of market leadership and innovation in the power measurement sector puts us in a strong position to support customers in these sectors, and the WT1800 is a key product in this process."

    The WT1800 is capable of performing up to six power input measurements, which makes it possible to perform efficiency tests between the input and output of products such as inverters. With its high-resolution 8.4-inch XGA display, the instrument is simple to set up and display up to 12 different pages of measurement items in formats such as numeric, waveforms and trends. A vector display is available for voltage and current phase analysis.

    Many of today's power conversion circuits use energy-saving switching techniques which can cause highly distorted voltage or current waveforms with high harmonic content. To measure these waveforms accurately, the WT1800 uses high-resolution 16-bit analogue-digital converters with a digitising rate of 2 MS/s (megasamples per second).

    The WT1800 has a power measurement bandwidth from DC and 0.1 Hz to 1 MHz. Basic power measurement accuracy is 0.1% of Reading plus 0.05% of range.

    For electric motor testing applications, the WT1800 offers a unique and powerful motor evaluation function which offers, in a single unit, measurements of all the relevant electrical power parameters along with rotational speed, torque, mechanical power, synchronous speed, slip, motor efficiency and total system efficiency.

    In addition, A-phase, B-phase and Z-phase input terminals have been added for advanced motor analysis. These signals make it possible to detect the rotational direction of the motor as well as the electrical angle measured using the Z-phase signal.

    A new programmable digital filter function enhances the capability to remove unnecessary harmonic components and noise superimposed on signals such as from an inverter or variable-speed motor drive. This filter can be set independently for each input element, from 100 Hz to 100 kHz in 100 Hz increments. An analogue filter is also provided for 300 kHz and 1 MHz filtering on each input element.

    Harmonic analysis can be carried out up to the 500th order from a 50 or 60 Hz fundamental frequency. This facility is especially important for measurements on new power conversion and power electronics devices.

    An industry first dual harmonic measurement function makes it possible to simultaneously measure the harmonic content and perform harmonic analysis on two different sources, such as the input and output of an inverter, variable-speed motor drive, lighting ballast, uninterruptible power supply or similar devices. The normal power parameters and harmonic data are measured simultaneously, providing for faster and more accurate power analysis.

    For photovoltaic power generation applications, a maximum peak power tracking measurement is available to maximise the harvested power generated by photovoltaic cells. To accomplish this, the WT1800 is capable of measuring voltage, current and power peak values and calculating the derived parameters.

    A power integration function is also available which can be used to measure the amount of power sold or purchased in grid interconnection applications. The WT1800 features Yokogawa's average active power function, making it possible to measure power consumption under conditions where the power fluctuates greatly.

    For the first time in the high-precision power analyser industry, an event trigger function is incorporated to capture only a particular event. A trigger can be set for measured values that fall out of a pre-selected range, and the WT1800 will only store, print or save data that meets the trigger condition.

    All the latest communication interface ports such as Ethernet, USB and GPIB are included in the WT1800. Support for USB removable storage media is also provided.

    Bus comms for refuse vehicles

    The CAN in Automation (CiA) group has released version 2.0 of the CleANopen specification. This CANopen application profile specifies the communication between electronic control units for refuse collecting vehicles (RCV). This includes the board controller (BCU), the lifter (LU), the compactor (CU), the container changer (CCU), the bin washer (WU), and the weight or volume meter (MU). The CleANopen communication system is based on the CAN lower-layers (ISO 11898 series) and the CANopen application layer (EN 50325-5/CiA 301).

    Vehicle manufacturers and their suppliers have developed jointly the CleANopen specification (CiA 422 series) within the CANopen SIG (special interest group) municipal vehicles. The completely restructured version 2.0 is partly incompatible to version 1.0. In particular, the measuring units for weight and/or volume have been changed. Additionally, some functional enhancements have been introduced. The specification is in DSP (draft standard proposal) status; it is only available for CiA members. Part 1 and part 2 are downloadable free-of-charge from the website .

    In spring, the entire specification will be submitted to CEN for European standardization. There are already more than 1000 RCVs on the road.

    Best in EMEA!

    From left to right: Lionel Caillat, Vice President & General Manager EMEA, Honeywell; Bradd Schneider, Vice President Global Sales, Honeywell; Steve Herd, Head of EMCO Product and Supplier Management, Farnell; Didier LeBorgne, Field Sales Engineer, Farnell France; Paivi Komminaho-Franz, European Supplier Account Manager, Farnell; Jamie Scott, Product Manager, Farnell; Beth Wozniak, President, Honeywell; and Harry Lakhal, General Manager, Farnell Spain and Portugal
    Farnell has won the 2011 EMEA Best in Class Gold Distribution award from Honeywell Sensing and Control (S&C), the global technology and manufacturing leader, serving customers worldwide with sensor, switch and test and measurement products. The award, presented at S&C’s 2011 Europe, Middle East and Africa Sales Kick Off meeting in Sorrento (I), recognises the outstanding European sales growth achieved by Farnell in 2010, which outperformed 2008 levels.  This is the second year in a row that Farnell have won this award.

    Honeywell also noted the successful collaboration between the two companies on element14 – Farnell’s technology portal and eCommunity for electronic design engineers – and its support on new product introductions.

    Farnell offers over 3,100 product lines from S&C’s comprehensive range that includes sensors, including the latest TruStability® Silicon Pressure Sensors , and switches, including the new Wireless LimitlessTM series. Comprehensive technical data on all the products, coupled with the discussion forums provided by element14, helps potential users of Honeywell S&C products select the optimum device for their application quickly and easily.

    Steve Herd, Farnell’s Head of  EMCO Product and Supplier Management said: “Farnell continues to add a unique extra dimension to the way in which we are able to support our design engineering customers and at the same time showcasing the very best in new products and technologies from our suppliers. The award from Honeywell underlines the success of these relationships and the value our suppliers place in our customer reach and our truly multi-channel approach.”

    “This award represents a major landmark in the relationship between Honeywell S&C and Farnell,” said Lionel Caillat, VP/GM Honeywell S&C EMEA. “Farnell has a great understanding of our product offering and has all the right tools and support to take them to market effectively.”

    Tuesday, February 15, 2011

    Training centres opened in US

    New centers are in Mobile (AL), and Matthews, (NC)

    Instrumentation schools are now conducted at six sites:

    Greenwood (Indianapolis), Indiana, at the Endress+Hauser Inc. National headquarters

    La Porte (Houston), Texas, at the Gulf Coast Calibration and Service Center facility,
    (Schools in Spanish are available.)

    Memphis, Tennessee, at the TriNova partnership facility.

    Vega Alta, Puerto Rico, at the Engineered Parts & Services partnership facility Spanish, (English schools are available.)

    Mobile, Alabama, at the Trinova facility, an Endress+Hauser sales representative,

    Matthews (near Charlotte), North Carolina, at the Carotek facility, an Endress+Hauser sales representative.
    Endress+Hauser has established two new training centers, in Mobile (AL US) and Matthews (NC US). The new centers teach fundamental, theoretical, and practical knowledge about instrumentation and application technology, with an emphasis on service and maintenance of the instrumentation. Training is combined with hands-on experience.

    While E+H process instruments are used in these schools, the training is designed to address instrumentation in a generic fashion with emphasis on theory and technology, rather than product specifics. All course attendees receive clear training materials and text, where applicable.  Each course consists of approximately 50%-60% lectures, presentations, oral and written exams, and 40%-50% hands-on training.

    All instructors are seasoned professionals with years of real-world measurement application and troubleshooting experience, and will be available to spend additional time with students at the end of each day to go over any concepts on which they are unclear or want to understand in greater depth.  The hands-on or lab portions of the class are conducted by breaking the overall class into manageable groups of three to four students.

    Courses include basic and advanced schools in instrumentation, pH and conductivity measurements, liquid analytical measurements, flow, level, pressure & temperature, Proifbus PA, and time of flight measurements.

    Basic schools provide a basic understanding of measurement techniques, while advanced courses add extensive hands-on work with actual instrumentation.

    US level for water & industry

    Two new transmitters offer greater flexibility and functionality for the industrial and water utilities markets

    Emerson Process Management has extended its range of Rosemount® 3100 Series ultrasonic non-contacting level transmitters with two new models designed to operate with the Rosemount 3490 Series of universal controllers. The new Rosemount 3107 and 3108 transmitters work with the 3490 controllers to provide combined measurement and control of level, volume (tank contents) or open channel flow – using flumes or weirs, in industrial and water utilities applications.

    Both transmitters have a 12-metre measurement range and are 24V loop-powered devices with 4-20mA and HART communications. They are supplied factory-sealed in an IP68-rated UPVC housing complete with integral cable and stainless steel mounting bracket, making installation quick and easy. They can be used as stand-alone devices or as part of a site-wide measurement, control and data acquisition system.

    Differential measurements can be made using two Rosemount ultrasonic transmitters and a single control unit. The system is easily programmed to display the difference or sum of the two levels or flows, as well as the individual measurements.

    The Rosemount 3108 features a remote temperature probe, making it ideal for open channel flow measurement when greater accuracy and precision are required. Designed to overcome the problem of inaccuracies caused by "solar gain" when the sun shines directly on transmitters installed in the open air, the compact unit has a remote temperature sensor with a two-metre cable. This makes it easy to mount the temperature sensor in a shady spot between the liquid surface and the transmitter, ensuring that the air temperature measurement used in the speed-of-sound calculation is truly representative.

    The Rosemount 3108 level transmitter and 3490 Series universal controller combination is MCERTS certified for Continuous Water Monitoring in England and Wales.

    Rosemount 3100 series ultrasonic level transmitters are part of the broad range of intelligent, digital field devices that power the PlantWeb™ digital plant architecture to improve plant efficiency through asset optimisation, process automation, and management execution.

    Robotic flight for the young!

    Festo’s bionic AirPenguins will be delighting the crowds at Britain's premier fair for young scientists and engineers
    Having just written about Red Herrings we now have a story about Flying Penguins! Wonders never cease in the wonderful world of automation.

    Festo’s famous bionic AirPenguins have again been cleared for takeoff and will be flying at The Big Bang Fair 2011 – Britain’s biggest science and engineering fair for young people. The AirPenguins will undoubtedly be one of the fair’s highlights. As well as delighting visitors with their graceful aerobatic agility as they fly around the ExCel Centre’s North Hall, they provide a thought-provoking insight into the types of energy transfer and behavioural mechanisms that could form the basis of future automation technology.

    Festo’s AirPenguins incorporate a high degree of built-in intelligence and can function completely autonomously or collectively; they are capable of adaptive behaviour, and are aware of their spatial surroundings.

    Intended to help 11-14 year olds choose their subject options at school, The Big Bang Fair is also guaranteed to provide a fun, yet educational day out for all 11– 19 year olds. The environment is a bit like a cross between the Science Museum and a theme park, enabling everyone to gain true hands-on experience of some of the most world’s most exciting science and engineering technology. This year’s event is likely be attended by as a many as 25,000 visitors, including some 5,000 teachers.

    Although Festo’s AirPenguins are no strangers to publicity, they really need to be viewed close-hand to appreciate how engineers have created these bionic creatures, using mechanisms copied from the movement of fishes and rays. So although they will be flying each day – every hour on the hour, for 10-15 minutes – they will also be on display on Festo’s stand in the ‘Energise’ zone.

    The stand will also feature displays of other Bionic developments from Festo's Bionic Learning Network, which is an alliance of educational establishments and specialist companies tasked with exploring bionic solutions for automation applications of the future. These will include the Bionic Handling Assistant, a unique handling system which takes its inspiration from an elephant’s trunk, and the FinGrippper adaptive gripping device, which embraces the way fish and rays convert energy into movement. Some of these developments have recently transferred from research to production and are already being used to considerable benefit in machines as complex as industrial robots. Winning of the ‘Innovation Oscar’ – the ‘Deutsche Zukunftspreis 2010’ (German Future Award) – by the Bionic Handling Assistant’s team is an example of how industrial companies and science can successfully work together; whereby companies develop new innovations and science contributes the latest technologies.

    Brand produces Red Herring!

    Invensys Operations Management has announced that its Skelta™ software offerings have won the Red Herring 100 Global award, a prestigious recognition honoring the year’s most promising private technology ventures from across North America, Europe and Asia.

    Skelta, a brand offering of Invensys Operations Management, provides business process management (BPM) and advanced workflow solutions. Its flagship Skelta BPM software empowers teams of people by linking them with work processes and systems to achieve specific business goals. The software allows users to create new BPM-enabled applications using powerful features such as an embeddable, web-based process designer; forms designer; process monitoring and optimisation capabilities; multi-tenancy; multiple communication channels; and strong integration with Microsoft technologies. In addition, the software offers online access to the operating environment, thus enabling a SaaS or cloud version that reduces barriers to access and use.

    “Choosing the best out of the previous three years was by no means a small feat,” said Alex Vieux, chairman, Red Herring. “After rigorous contemplation and discussion, we narrowed down our list from 1,200 potential companies to 200 finalists. Trying to get it down to 100 companies was a task upon itself. The Invensys Skelta team should be extremely proud of its achievement because the competition was difficult.”

    The Red Herring Global 100 list has become a mark of distinction for identifying promising new companies and entrepreneurs. Its editorial staff evaluated the entrants on both quantitative and qualitative criteria, such as financial performance, technology innovation, management quality, strategy and market penetration. This assessment is complemented by a review of the track record and standing of startups relative to their sector peers.

    “Being recognised as a winner of this year's Red Herring Global 100 Award endorses our culture of continuous innovation, and perfectly complements the recent launched of our new Skelta BPM 2011 software,” said Vinay Moorthy, vice president, Invensys Operations Management. “Our software provides a unique, agile and scalable platform for enterprise-wide collaboration, while at the same time leveraging existing systems to achieve operational excellence and great ROI. The latest version has many new productivity features, including the ability to collaborate from within web-based forms, extending advanced BPM functionality to Microsoft SharePoint 2010; document management enhancements; customisable user-friendly business dashboards and web parts; and support for custom controls. Because of its embeddable capabilities and ability provide visibility into end-to-end business processes, we believe our Skelta BPM 2011 software will bring a radical change in the way mission-critical enterprises collaborate. We are extremely honored to have been recognised as the winner of the coveted Red Herring Global 100 award."

    Power generation today!

    The 54th Annual ISA POWID Symposium will be held 5–10 June 2011 at the Embassy Suites Hotel in Concord (near Charlotte), (NC US). The event is sponsored by the ISA Power Industry Division.

    Keynote presentations &
    ISA and industry training sessions

    Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI) Interest Group Meeting
    ISA Instrumentation and Control Standards Working Group Meetings
    Honors and Awards Luncheon
    Vendor exhibits by key suppliers
    Opening night reception
    Keynote presentation topics include: Nuclear Power, Cybersecurity, and Smart Grid.
    The theme for the event, “Power Generation Automation Today: Beyond the Original Intention,” will provide power generation industry professionals with information on the latest innovations in controls, instrumentation, cybersecurity, Smart Grid, regulatory issues and variable energy technologies, which impact power generation delivery systems.

    Presenters are to include: Christopher Guith, vice president for policy at the US Chamber of Commerce's Institute for 21st Century Energy, Tim Roxey, manager of critical infrastructure protection, North American Electric Reliability Corporation (NERC) and Ken Thomas, former Duke Energy Nuclear Fleet Technical manager, current consultant to the nuclear industry.

    The ISA POWID Division anticipates more than 70 technical papers during joint sessions, with a fossil and nuclear focus, to be presented over the three-day period

    New design software version

    Trace Software International announced the release of a new elecworks version at the SolidWorks World 2011 Conference, held in late January in San Antonio (TX US). The 13th annual SolidWorks World Conference brought together designers, engineers, managers, and partners to discuss ideas, trends, and the technology shaping the future of product design. Show attendees saw how elecworks™ and SolidWorks® software allow customers to design automation and electrical installation projects from 2D schematics up to 3D design.

    As a SolidWorks Gold Partner Product, elecworks™ has been specifically designed for engineers who want to integrate electrical schematics in their existing SolidWorks platform as an easy to use powerful add-on. An additional Routing and Cabling module enables panel and machine wiring in 3D automatically. The latest version provides new flexibility for PLC handling and also includes also a PDM link module to manage electrical project data within SolidWorks Enterprise PDM system.

    “With its seamless integration to SolidWorks, elecworks™ aids designers in associating  electrical requirements with their mechanical projects, using real-time change capabilities. This time-saving electrical CAD application significantly improves designers’ workflow and collaboration. For our third year participating at SolidWorks World, elecworks™ strengthens its focus on meeting designers’ expectations,” said Dr Pedro Puig Deu, General Manager, Trace Software International.

    “Customers are demanding even more creativity and efficiency from manufacturers, making product design and development even more challenging and putting more pressure on engineers,” said DS SolidWorks Manager of Alliances Nick Iwaskow. “Working directly within the SolidWorks environment to access electrical design via elecworks™  not only increases engineering productivity, but also fuels innovation that helps engineers design better products.”

    Unintended acceleration!

    The U.S. Department of Transportation released the results of a 10-month National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) NASA investigation (pdf) into potential electronic causes of unintended acceleration in Toyota vehicles. As part of the investigation, NASA experts examined more than 280,000 lines of software. NASA's analysis included performing static analysis on the software using three tools: GrammaTech CodeSonar, Coverity Prevent and Uno (a research tool that originated at Bell Labs).

    In the report, NASA described CodeSonar as a "strong static source code analysis tool from GrammaTech that uses a different technology for detailed inter-procedural source code analysis. CodeSonar analysis typically takes longer to complete than comparable tools, but can reveal more subtle types of defects and suspect coding patterns, requiring deeper path analysis (which can be more time consuming)."

    Paul Anderson, VP of Engineering for GrammaTech, stated, "GrammaTech is proud that NASA chose our static-analysis tool for this important and demanding investigation. NASA's selection underscores that CodeSonar is the tool of choice for organizations that want to perform the deepest and most penetrating code analysis."

    Moisture analysers upgraded

    Michell retrofits older AlOx moisture analyzers with a new multi-channel moisture analyzer
    Aluminium Oxide and Ceramic moisture transmitter-based analyzers are the most widespread process moisture measurement systems used in thousands of installations world-wide. They are robust, simple to operate and maintain, offering excellent calibration traceability at lowest cost per channel.

    To meet the market demand for technology improvement, Michell Instruments launched a new Promet I.S. process moisture analyzer that can be retrofitted in almost all existing AlOx or Ceramic transmitter based trace moisture or dew point measuring analyzer systems. The Michell intrinsically safe ceramic moisture sensors – which form the basis of the Promet I.S analyzer – may be installed within the hazardous area directly into an existing sampling system with minimal wiring.

    The Promet I.S. multi-channel format enables the control of up to four pressure compensated moisture measurement channels within a single 19” sub-rack unit, to measure dew points as low as -100°C. Measurements of moisture in process gases and liquids can be easily combined in a single analyzer system as the Promet I.S channels for moisture in gas can be combined together with a sister product for moisture in liquid measurement – the Liquidew I.S.

    Each channel functions independently of the others so that maintenance can be carried out on one channel while the others continue to operate as normal: ideal in situations where redundancy is required for safety reasons.

    The multi-channel format not only keeps the cost per channel to a minimum, but is also very simple to operate, with bright alphanumeric LED displays as well as temperature and pressure compensation. Unit conversions from dew point to an exhaustively wide range of alternative moisture content units allow the user complete flexibility to select their preferred unit of measurement. The front panel interface enables the user to scroll through the set up menus to easily configure the analyzer to their own requirements. Four user-adjustable alarm points and two analogue 4-20 mA outputs are provided as well as a digital RS485 RTU for connection to external devices.

    The Promet I.S can measure dew points as low as -100°C, and is calibrated and traceable to NPL and NIST.

    Monday, February 14, 2011

    All EMC testing needs

    TESEQ has released Compliance 5 emission and immunity test software.  Compliance 5 is a single, integrated test platform capable of performing all RF EMC testing needs.

    The upgraded software is simple to use with a Commercial Application Package included that aids in speeding set-up and makes compliance testing quick and easy.   Other application packages for military and aerospace are available as options. Further new packages for reverberation chambers and automotive testing will be available in the next few months.

    Embedded into each test package are hardware configuration templates.  Simple drag and drop tools allow the operator to customize the configuration to match the equipment in use.  Selections for any test need only to be chosen once and are then saved for continued use.

    Compliance 5 features a unique multi-user function with administrator control that ensures data integrity.  Files can be locked or made ‘read only’ by the system administrator.  Users can configure tests while giving the administrator overall control to important files.  The control feature also allows configuration and equipment details to be stored along with results.

    Advanced users and previous Compliance 3 software users can utilize Compliance 5 to modify test procedures, test set-ups and EUT (equipment under test) test sequencing to further enhance the software’s performance and customize their current system to their own needs.

    This reliable and configurable software can be modified by the user at anytime.  An infinite amount of new tests can be created by editing existing files.  Various included tools allow editing of instrument drivers, test methods, EUT test sequences and report formats.

    Compliance 5 makes custom reporting easy.  Its powerful, flexible reporting package features pre-formatted templates that can include company logo, text, graphs, tables, test details and pictures, saving time and reducing the burden put on a test engineer’s time.

    TESEQ’s Compliance 5 is the leading software for RF EMC testing.  It is used in test laboratories worldwide to deliver fully-compliant, fast, efficient and repeatable testing in   military and aerospace applications, reverberation chambers, commercial and consumer products and the automotive industry.

    Each new license comes with a twelve month software maintenance agreement that entitles the user to free upgrades, access to TESEQ’s online support where new instrument drivers can be downloaded free of charge, and use of the company’s email-based help desk.

    Noise attenuation

    Tartarini Type SRII and SRS silencers ensure more efficient noise abatement for high pressure drops and high gas velocities.

    Internal view of Emerson’s Tartarini Type FL regulator with Type SRS silencer
    Emerson Process Management has released the Tartarini™ Type SRII and SRS silencer options for the Type FL regulators. These new silencers provide an efficient noise prevention solution for natural gas transmission or distribution installations.   

    Types SRS and SRII silencer options are available for DN 25, 50, 80, 100, 150 (1, 2, 3, 4, 6-inch), as well as a new DN 200 (8-inch) size, opening a broader application range for this product family. Noise reduction of up to 20 dB(A) can be achieved, depending on the application. As a source treatment, Types SRS and SRII silencers utilise multiple orifices of special size, shape, and spacing, which reduce noise-producing interactions and offers an alternative to path treatment or buried service. Units already installed can be easily retro-fitted with a Type SRII or Type SRS.

    360 PIR detector

    Carlo Gavazzi has added a new PIR with a full 360 degrees of cover to its smart-house range of building automation products. Just like other smart-house products the new device is powered by the smart-house 2 wire bus and is very easy to configure and commission.

    Major features of BSQ-PIR360 detector:
    * Powered via network connection
    * 90mm-diameter ceiling mount
    * IP20 ingress protection
    * Operating temperature: -5°C to +50°C
    * Meets EU EMC directive 89/336/EEC
    * Meets EU low-voltage directive 73/237/EEC
    The BSQ-PIR360 ceiling mounted detector has a 360 degree detection angle for room occupancy sensing ensuring reliable detection every time. Four sensitivity settings, chosen by setting DIP switches, allow the detection range to be set between 2.5 metres and 4 metres with a foot print of 7 metres and 12 metre respectively.  This flexibility enables use in many commercial and residential applications for the control of lighting, heating, air conditioning and extractor fans.

    The smart-house home automation range enables the control of heating, lighting and appliances to be managed automatically to increase energy efficiency, reduce utility costs, and enhance comfort and convenience. A variety of sensors and actuators such as dimmer switches and relays are available in a number of styles, and all are connected using just two wires running throughout the property and back to the central controller. This low-voltage control wiring is inherently safe, easy to install, and allows new features to be added in the future. Outdoor equipment such as garden lighting can also be connected, for centralised control of entire premises.

    Carlo Gavazzi supports its extensive smart-house range with resources including installation guidance, and training courses providing hands on experience for electrical installers.

    Optimise hygiene for all sectors!

    Rittal has just extended the range of protection categories for their Hygienic Design range of enclosures. With immediate effect all Hygienic Design Compact enclosures & Terminal boxes satisfy the demands of the following protection categories: IP 66, IP 69K along with NEMA types 12, 13 & 4X with the addition of NEMA 3R for their range of HD-KL Terminal boxes.

    Rittal Hygienic Design offers new housing solutions to meet the exacting requirements of the food industry now and in the future. With the extended protection categories the Rittal range of products can be cleaned faster and easier than ever before reducing the down time for scheduled maintenance and increasing the end users productivity, efficiencies and profitability.

    Global product launch!

    Meggitt Sensing Systems,  has announced the global market launch of the Endevco® model 126, a low-cost, microprocessor controlled, three-channel DC differential voltage amplifier and signal conditioner.  This model is designed with flexible setup and a wide bandwidth to 200 kHz (-3 dB corner), allowing it to be used with Endevco®  bridge-type or differential output accelerometers and pressure transducers, or other industry models, across a variety of general purpose laboratory testing applications.

    The Endevco® model 126 incorporates variable gain adjust

    ment, shunt calibration capability, as well as automatic zero adjustment capability for elimination of inherent DC offset voltage. The unit also features three independent operating channels with individually programmable excitation voltage level settings from 0-12 VDC; differential output and gain adjustment range from 0 to 999.9; an independent filter selectable function; and BNC output connectors, for easy hookup to readout and recording instruments. In addition, remote sense leads are provided to eliminate errors caused by driving long cable lengths.

    Common applications for a high amplitude measurement system which includes the Endevco® model 126 DC sensor vibration amplifier and signal conditioner, along with appropriate sensors, include drop testing; consumer electronic products testing; metal-to-metal impacts; penetrator tests, structural blast loading; weapons data recorder testing; automotive crash test; and impact testing. In addition, all Endevco® signal conditioners are accompanied by a five-year comprehensive product warranty.