Friday, September 9, 2011

Wireless strain measurement technology offshore

Mantracourt's Wireless Strain Measurement Technology is Chosen for the Testing of Critical Offshore Systems

Mantracourt's wireless telemetry strain acquisition technology has been chosen by Technip Umbilical Systems (DUCO Ltd), a company that manufactures a range of bespoke 'umbilical systems' for offshore applications.

DUCO umbilicals form the critical link between a subsea production arrangement and a remote facility providing control, power, and communications and chemical services. Applications include production control, chemical injection, subsea pumping and processing, gas lift and underground gas storage among others.

Using Mantracourt's wireless technology, DUCO perform steel tube fatigue tests and remotely monitor strain throughout. This testing is essential as umbilical structures can undergo dynamic stresses throughout service life, which can impact on lifespan and performance. Accurate fatigue data is therefore essential.

"Mantracourt's T24 wireless strain measurement system is ideal for our application," said Robert Nesbitt, Principal Engineer at DUCO. “The tubes rotate during component testing, so 'wired' systems have proven impractical. Moving to the robust, wireless telemetry approach of the T24 is enabling us to reliably collect critical data.”

Tom Crawford, Test Technician at DUCO added that “With the sleep and wake feature, the requirement for personnel intervention can be reduced and battery life increased. Features such as the very small size of the device and Mantracourt’s excellent technical support have also contributed to the success of this project."

Mantracourt are specialists in the design and manufacture of electronics for measurement technologies including strain gauge, temperature, pressure, voltage, current, potentiometer, rate, flow, LVDT and displacement in either analogue, digital or wireless form.

The DUCO system operates with a Mantracourt T24-ACMm, a mini IP54 enclosure which houses the strain gauge acquisition device, converting the analogue signal (mV) to a digital format which is then transmitted via 2.4Ghz frequency to a PC. The internal antenna provides range of up to 100m. The T24-ACMm also has options for a voltage or current input. A small battery pack with 2 x AAA cells is used to provide 3V DC power and has been fixed to the rotating tubes. Duco have used Mantracourt’s toolkit software to receive and log data to a .csv file.


“This is an ideal example of how Mantracourt work with our customers to overcome measurement and instrumentation challenges,” said Kelly Voysey, Marketing Manager at Mantracourt. “With all of the design and manufacturing of our products taking place at our UK factory, we are able not only to maintain absolute quality, but also to provide bespoke systems and the highest level of technical support.”

Features of T24-ACMm
  • Miniature connectivity enclosure (20 x 35 x 60mm)
  • For Strain, Current or Voltage input
  • Separate (optional) battery pack – 2 x AAA cells
  • IP54 Rated
  • Internal chip antenna giving up to 100m range
  • Simple configuration and calibration of acquisition module via PC using base station & T24 Toolkit software
The T24-ACMm enclosure is designed for Mantracourt’s range of telemetry acquisition modules: T24-SA (Strain Acquisition), T24-IA( 0-20mA Current Acquisition), T24-VA (0-10V Voltage Acquisition). The T24 ACMm has simple screw field terminals for easy wiring to a variety of sensors. It also offers users the option to fit wired completion resistors allowing a strain input to be either full, half or quarter bridge. The optional T24-BB1 provides battery power using 2 x AAA Cells and is connected to the ACMm via simple screw field terminals for easy wiring.

Digital force gauge series

Includes full-colour displays and Bluetooth® connectivity

Bluetooth communication and full-colour displays are among the features of the new series of Chatillon® DFX II, DFE II and DFS II digital force gauges introduced by AMETEK Test & Calibration Instruments. The new models span the full range of handheld and stand-mounted force gauge applications from the simplest “Go-No Go” to the most sophisticated quality control. This allows users to purchase the specific force measurement capabilities they need to meet any quality assurance and regulatory requirements.

The three new gauges are designed for use in a wide range of industries including plastics, electronics, pharmaceutical/biomedical, packaging, automotive, general manufacturing and military industries.

The high-end DFS II is the first gauge in its class with onboard Bluetooth connectivity for wireless transmission of readings to a computer. It can be equipped with integral loadcells or smart remote sensors for load measurement and torque measurement. Accuracy is better than 0.1% full scale.

The DFE II is a compact, easy-to-use gauge for handheld or test stand applications. It supports a variety of standard gauge functions including normal and peak readings, high/low limits, setpoints, pass/fail results, statistical results, loadcell actuation and direction.

Both DFE II and DFS II models introduce full colour displays for easier reading and rapid recognition of unit status and results. They also have USB communication capability. AMETEK’s NEXYGEN DF software, which supports statistical quality control, is standard on the DFS II and optional on the DFE II.

The DFX II gauge is an economical solution for applications requiring basic peak force measurement. The new model adds a rechargeable power supply and greater accuracy. It is available in four capacities (10lbf, 50 lbf, 100 lbf, 200 lbf) and features an integral loadcell with a measurement accuracy of ±0.3% of full scale.

All three gauges are fully backward compatible with previous stands, accessories and software so they can be quickly integrated into existing test processes. Loads are displayed in ozf, gf, lbf, kgf and N units. All are supplied with durable carrying cases.

High density PXI switches

Pickering Interfaces is expanding its range of PXI RF switches with the introduction of the 40-754 SPDT switch module.

The 40-754 supports up to 17 off SPDT RF switches in a single module and is available in two different versions based on a common switch design.

The high density version occupies just one slot of a 3U PXI chassis and uses a high density MS-M RF multi-way connector that is suitable for switching frequencies to 500MHz. The higher frequency version is 2 slots wide and uses SMB connectors and suitable for switching signals to 1.2GHz.

The 40-754 is the highest density SPDT switch available in the standard PXI format and is suitable for use in both commercial and military ATE systems. It is an ideal replacement for use in older VXI-based military ATE applications that are being replaced and/or upgraded by PXI/LXI solutions where great numbers of SPDT are used as standard RF switch sub-assemblies.

The two models use a switch design based around high quality electro-mechanical relays and in addition to being supported in any PXI compliant chassis can be supported in Pickering Interfaces Modular LXI Chassis’.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

MCERTS approval for flowmeter

An advanced water/wastewater flow meter from Nivus UK has been awarded MCERTS product certification by SIRA, the body which manages MCERTS on behalf of the Environment Agency of England and Wales (EA).

The Nivus OCM Pro CF (incorporating POA Sensor) Echo Profile Flowmeter is an area velocity flow meter which employs the cross correlation principle to deliver highly accurate open channel flow measurement.

Following a rigorous testing programme, this flow meter was found to meet the strict specification and performance requirements of the MCERTS scheme for flow monitoring in open channels between 0 to 2 m/s velocity and 0.1 to 1m depth. Typical applications for the flow meter are as diverse as abstraction, wastewater treatment, stormwater, industrial wastewater, cooling water, sluice stages in rivers and irrigation

Emphasising the importance of the MCERTS certificate, David Miles from Nivus  said: "This represents authoritative third party evidence that the flow meter performs with high levels of accuracy and reliability. The MCERTS certificate will support the expansion of the Nivus range into the UK, which has recently been boosted by the appointment of Mike Smith who is now responsible for service and technical support.


"MCERTS certification is now obligatory for all new and replacement flow meters for EA regulated processes, so our customers can be confident that this meter will satisfy the requirements of their discharge consent. Furthermore, we believe that this is the most accurate open channel flow meter in the world without an additional primary measurement device."

The MCERTS scheme is based upon the premise that quality data is dependent upon the proper use of methods, standards, services and equipment, trained and qualified personnel, effective planning, quality assurance and quality control. The deployment of MCERTS certified products therefore provides operators with an opportunity to deliver higher levels of confidence in monitoring data under the EA's Operator Self-Monitoring (OSM) programme.

Level transmitters in Modbus and LevelMaster applications

The Rosemount 5300 Series Guided Wave Radar (GWR) and 5400 Series non-contacting level transmitters from Emerson now include the ability to communicate via the Modbus communications protocol. The addition of Modbus enables the transmitter to emulate LevelMaster - sometimes known as ROS or tank - protocol. This broadens the application range for these devices even further and enables them to be retrofitted into existing Modbus and LevelMaster networks.

The new transmitters feature an integral HART® to Modbus converter (HMC). This enables up to four external HART transmitters of any type to be connected, and their signals communicated via the Modbus network. 

See article "Radar level measurement best practice," by Sarah Parker  - This is one of our most frequently accessed articles
The devices can be configured using Emerson’s Radar Master software, point-to-point via HART communications, or remotely by using HART Tunnelling over the Modbus network. Configuring remotely eliminates the need for technicians to climb up vessels, enhancing safety.

Rosemount 5300 and 5400 Series level transmitters are designed to withstand the harsh conditions found in the oil and gas industry. They are robust, accurate and reliable, providing users with ‘fit and forget’ real-time level and interface measurement.

MulMultichannel charge amplifier delivers enhanced precision and flexibility

Kistler has launched a new, modular high-end multichannel charge amplifier to provide the precise signal amplification demanded by laboratory applications for extremely accurate measurement of physical quantities. The innovative Type 5080A amplifier is ideal for processing signals from a wide variety of piezoelectric sensors.

The new charge amplifier offers a wide frequency range from 0 to more than 200 kHz, a broad measuring range (±2 to 2,2 million pC), low drift, low noise level, enhanced low-pass filtering and an integral summing processor as standard. AC and DC versions are available with both USB and RS-232C interfaces.

The 19" rack mounting, modular design can accommodate up to eight amplifier modules which may be any combination of charge modules for piezoelectric sensors and dual-mode modules with charge/PiezoTron® input for use with force, pressure, torque or acceleration sensors.

Power interconnection for harsh operating Environments

The new Souriau product range for power interconnection includes three shell sizes (19, 23 and 25) with silvered contacts able to handle currents up to 800 amps. The design of these connectors is built around the use of Souriau’s Series III inserts and shells. This pedigree results in unrivalled performance under extreme temperatures and vibration, due in particular to the use of the ratcheting system and materials used and qualified for D38999 applications.


The inserts and seals used belong to class 175, which means that high power can be
transmitted, even at sustained temperatures. Although the limiting factor is often the cable used, the use of class 175 inserts is fully justified when the connector is used in a bus bar situation (cf. connector at left in photo), i.e. when the cable is replaced by metal supply plate. The connector contact is then screwed directly onto that plate. This type of connection enables maximal power transmission.

The use of high power may generate interference, which can adversely affect the
performance of the other communication systems found on the equipment. This is why Souriau offers its shielded Series III interface with an EMI ring as standard, along with different rear connection types (elbow or straight) enabling optimal grounding.

The design of these power connectors is fully modular. They can also be used alongside generators (APUs) near the engine block, or further downstream for electrical distribution between equipments. The backshells used are removable, so they can be adjusted at the last minute according to the space constraints encountered when starting wiring; or the elbow connector can be orientated according to the angle of the incoming cable, in order to minimise the residual tension of the cable on the connector.

Finally, these power connectors are available with RoHS Zinc Nickel protection, which is suitable for the 500 hours salt fog withstand and the 500 mating as stated both in the MIL-DTL-38999.

The modularity, materials used and standard interface mean that Souriau’s power product range meets the latest requirements dictated by the advent of hybrid vehicles and the need for greater power in order to cope with the proliferation of on-board equipment.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

New torque measurement system

The need for a more accurate and versatile non-contact rotary torque sensor has evolved the industry from technology defined by slip rings and bearings into the digital age. Leading the way is Honeywell’s new TMS 9250 Torque Measurement System, which offers true torque measurements with a non-contact, digital telemetry design.

Today’s testing requirements demand higher frequency response,
simplified installation and reduced down time associated with mechanical wear.
Honeywell has introduced the new TMS 9250 Torque Measurement System. Utilizing non-contact digital telemetry technology, the system is built to deliver unprecedented precision and performance. The TMS 9250 is designed to meet evolving industry needs for wireless torque measurement systems, offering improved accuracy in torque measurement data and performance; flexible configurations; simplified installation, setup and operation; and long-term reliability.

The need for precision torque measurement spans industries and applications as monitoring torque is critical in the design and/or testing of axles, drive trains, gear drives, gas and electric motors, transmissions, pumps, propulsion systems, and gas and steam turbines. End users and manufacturers of dynamometers and test stands can now digitally measure torque with improved results and the desired customization features to meet their ever-changing needs.

The TMS 9250 offers new options for mounting, installing, sensing, controlling, actuating, collecting data and reporting data. The system is fast, accurate, flexible, simple to install, and requires less maintenance. Completely digital, its wireless design enables higher integrity of the torque data capture through higher resolution, higher sensitivity, faster response, and no mechanical interferences. The result is a more accurate indication of the actual torque being experienced, plus an increase in reliability.

True torque measurement. Slip ring and rotary transformers are less reliable methods to measure true torque and offer only limited transmission speeds and lower resolution data. Mechanical in nature, these components create friction and are subject to wear. Honeywell’s TMS 9250 non-contact digital telemetry design eliminates mechanical interference by measuring torque wirelessly. As a result, users realize more accurate data measurement with higher resolution and faster, better performance.

Easy configuration. Honeywell’s modular design can easily be adapted or customized to fit into many different types of test stands to meet specific test application requirements.  Multiple mechanical configurations are available, including DIN, SAE, integral coupling, shaft-to-shaft, and custom mounting.

Simple installation, setup and operation. The TMS 9250 is light, compact and has quick-attach wiring connectors for fast installation. Easy setup parameters are readily accessible through the software system, enabling test parameter adjustments to be made quickly and remotely if necessary. The software accommodates multiple calibrations on the same sensor, allowing a single sensor to be reconfigured in a variety of characterization arrangements, “on the fly” so that the test is not interrupted.

Proven reliability. Because Honeywell’s TMS 9250 is a non-contact system for torque measurement (i.e., no friction), its design also results in fewer sensor and instrumentation wiring issues, leading to lower maintenance needs.

Enhanced electromagnetic analysis software accelerates RF and microwave design

Concerto speeds simulation of RF designs
employing advanced metamaterials, allowing
representation by bulk properties.
Here, a plane wave strikes metamaterial
with a negative refractive index.
Cobham Technical Services has a new release of the Concerto electromagnetic design software for RF and microwave applications from its Vector Fields Software product line. Concerto provides developers with a very cost-effective means of achieving the best solution in the shortest possible time. The latest version - Concerto v7.5R1 - incorporates numerous enhancements to accelerate further every aspect of design, simulation, analysis and optimization.

Many of the enhancements in this release centre on the powerful 3D geometric Modeller that forms an integral part of all Concerto configurations. This has new meshing options for the finite element (FE) Eigenvalue solver, which can result in significantly shorter solution times, and the Modeller now provides access to a range of additional features in Concerto's finite difference time domain (FDTD) simulation engine. Among these is the ability to present frequency domain field plots over any regions of the model, and for any number of frequencies, from a single time domain analysis.

The Modeller now also supports features for the efficient simulation of complex materials in FDTD. One new facility allows the definition of lumped ports with frequency dispersive properties, based on the Drude, Debye and Lorentz models, providing a circuit element representation of discrete structures within complex materials.

The properties of metamaterials are being explored increasingly for use in microwave devices such as antennas and filters. Support for the simulation of these materials has been enhanced by allowing their representation by bulk constitutive properties. Since these types of materials generally rely on small-scale structure for their desired electromagnetic characteristics, their simulation can be very computationally intensive; using their bulk properties greatly increases the speed of simulation.

One common application of Concerto is in the design of antennas. A new tool in the Modeller enables swept far-field results to be generated by the FDTD solver in arbitrary directions, giving the ability to assess the broad-band far-field performance both on and off boresight.

The Concerto Manager has also been improved, and now features tabbed folder windows for simpler and faster navigation, together with an enhanced capability for running Concerto's frequency domain solvers in batch mode.

Underlying Concerto is an advanced and flexible scripting capability, allowing automation of almost all of the features of model creation analysis and post processing. The latest release extends the range of commands and features in the scripting language, and provides a redesigned and enhanced editor for creating and editing command files.

Concerto provides an FDTD simulator as standard, enabling users to quickly and easily model a wide variety of microwave devices such as antennas, waveguides, filters, cavities and resonators. Two further simulation options are available. A Method of Moments (MoM) analysis module uses a highly accurate formulation for the analysis of arbitrary geometries. Typical applications include radar cross-section calculation and the evaluation of antenna performance and placement on aircraft and ships. For designers wishing to characterize the performance of devices such as RF cavities and microwave resonators, Concerto offers a Finite Element Method (FEM) analysis module, which determines the eigenvalues and associated eigenvectors of resonant structures.

Concerto v7.5R1 is available in a number of configurations, including several low-cost versions, all of which use the 3D geometric Modeller for model build or import and employ the FDTD solver as standard. These versions can be upgraded to the full professional version at any time. Concerto ES is an entry-level 3D package which provides an ideal introduction for designers who are new to virtual prototyping software. Concerto 2D is an extremely fast 2D analysis module, which is primarily intended for designing components with axisymmetric geometries, such as circular and corrugated horn antennas. For designers of axisymmetric coaxial devices, such as connectors, Concerto AS offers a highly cost-effective means to optimize their electromagnetic designs very quickly.

New ATEX-certified electrical socket boxes for harsh, wet or explosive environments

Marechal Electric has a new range of ATEX-certified socket boxes which increase electrical safety in harsh, wet or hazardous environments such as oil refineries, chemical plants, gas terminals, grain silos and food processing.

The MXBS range of socket boxes allows customers to combine socket-outlets and multi-contact connectors, with voltages up to 750V and currents up to 63A, in the same box. The largest of the ten standard case sizes can accept up to 24 socket-outlets or multi-connectors, with socket-outlets rated from 20A to 63A and multi-connectors rated at 10A and integrating between 12 and 37 contacts. The boxes can accept stranded wiring from 1.5 mm2 to 25 mm2 and flexible wiring from 1.5 mm2 to 16 mm2.

The Decontactor™ socket-outlets, multi-contact connectors and MXBS boxes comply with ATEX 94/9/CE directive. They are certified according to IECEx for use in zones 1 & 2, and 21 & 22, which enables them to be used in environments which have a risk of explosion from gas or dust. Sealing to IP66 makes the boxes water-tight and completely eliminates the ingress of dust. The cases also offer protection against shocks rated at level IK09 according to IEC and EN 62 262.

Reliability is improved with a robust construction throughout, with the casings manufactured in polyester resin reinforced with fiber-glass and graphite; Decontactor™ sockets manufactured in polyamide; and the multi-connectors manufactured in metal cases. A wide range of accessories provides greater convenience and simplifies installation.


Stephen Thackray, Sales manager comments, “The new ATEX boxes give customers the ability to enhance electrical safety to protection level <> in hazardous, corrosive or wet environments with a range of fully complementary socket-outlets, multi-contact connectors and accessories. The socket-outlets and connectors feature a unique design which reduces maintenance time and costs by allowing the plugs to be removed quickly and safely by any operator, without the need for a qualified electrician.”

Best seller in loadcells

Versatile tension/compression load cell is best seller for LCM Systems

DCE St. Steel stud type
tension & compression load cell
The DCE load cell from LCM Systems provides design engineers with a small and versatile product for measurement of tensile and compressive forces. Applications include product testing for tensile strength, tension measurement and general force applications.

The standard product is offered in ranges from 100N to 50kN, although specials can be designed and manufactured not only with customised ranges, but different thread sizes, integral connectors and high temperature versions are all popular requests from design engineers. This compact load cell is constructed in stainless steel and environmentally sealed to IP65. To add to its versatility, different mounting options are available, designed to make the load cell suitable where space is limited and a version with rationalised output can also be supplied.

The DCE load cell is currently one of LCM Systems’ best selling products and to celebrate LCM Systems is offering substantial discounts for bulk orders.

Highlighting engineering software extensions

More than twelve months have passed since Eplan Platform 2.0 was launched on the market, with over 1000 extensions some are still unknown. Reason enough to examine this major release from surprisingly new perspectives and learn about the convincing and exciting logic extensions for schematic generation, revision control and language management in practice.

The Machine Directive and high quality requirements are part of the reason for the increasing focus on adherence to standards and regulations when creating schematics. The Eplan Platform consistent answer: standardisation and repeated use. Required identifiers and additional component information can now be uniquely stored in parts management. The finishing touch for PE and N terminals: the requested additional function designation can now be stored directly on the part. When the designer uses a component, the designation is automatically transferred to the schematic, ensuring that the terminal is displayed in accordance with standards – on all schematic pages and with no extra effort. The automatic Eplan functions for numbering components prevent duplicate device tags, thereby improving documentation quality and speeding up design.

More logic included
Even more complex device technology requires that the wiring must be clearly represented in the schematic. That's where the Eplan Platform's potential transfer comes into play, which now goes beyond the connections placed in the black box. By assigning the connections colours according to the internal interconnections, it is considerably easier to track the signal. Starting in design and manufacturing and continuing all the way through commissioning and maintenance. Extra logic is also found in item properties,which can now contain detailed specifications for display and conversion and even complete technical SI units. The same holds for reports and calculations whose displayed values have been standardised. Eplan makes sure that all values have the same units in the calculation – no matter how they were entered in the schematic. Exact results are a given.

Perfect change tracking
Who isn't familiar with this situation? Just before the project is finished, numerous changes are made which have to be traceable. The powerful revision control in Eplan Platform 2.0 comes into its own here, significantly speeding up change management. Various types of changes are clearly marked with colours and symbols. All project members can see at a glance if project information has been added, changed or deleted. A table summarising all changes makes sure that all processes run smoothly – in engineering and especially in manufacturing, commissioning and maintenance. The direct result: faster starting-up phases and shorter machine downtimes.

Eplan Central Parts Management
A cost-effective alternative: Those who store and update part data centrally, separately from engineering, can now use Eplan parts management as a separate module. CPM, short for "Central Parts Management", is a stand-alone version that is the simple alternative for business departments. Data and component information created and entered here is available to all Eplan users. This provides simple, cost-effective data maintenance with the full parts management functionality.

Language management
That Eplan is Unicode compatible and designed for 16 international languages is not new. What is new is the setting allowing the user to differentiate between the source and display language in a project. The source language is the language in which the text was entered, usually the native language. The display language is the language in which the text is displayed in the schematic – this can be in many languages, at the same time. Entering text and dealing with translations is even more transparent and it is much easier to work with foreign languages in the design. A decisive advantage for global business – both in time and quality.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Acquisition leads to standalone water entity

ITT Corporation has completed its acquisition of YSI Incorporated,  (see report Merger agreement announced 11/7/2011) forming a water-focused analytics business with annual revenue of approximately $300 million. YSI is a leading developer and manufacturer of sensors, instruments, software, and data collection platforms for environmental water monitoring, with facilities in the U.S., Europe and Asia.

The new water company will be named Xylem ('zi-lem) and will consist of the Water & Wastewater (including wastewater transport; biological, filtration and disinfection treatment and analytics), Residential & Commercial Water and Flow Control businesses.
The name Xylem, derived from classical Greek, is the tissue that transports water in plants. It signifies the company's unique position in the marketplace as a leading equipment and service provider of a broad product line that addresses the full cycle of water – from collection, distribution and use to the return of water to the environment. Xylem also highlights the engineering efficiency of our water-centric business by linking it with the best water transportation of all - that which occurs in nature.
"YSI’s product offering complements our existing water portfolio and enables us to better serve our global customers and build on our commitment to solve challenges that our customers face across the water industry,” said Gretchen McClain, president of ITT's Fluid and Motion Control business, and future chief executive officer of Xylem, the new standalone water company separating in a tax-free spinoff from ITT later this year - see box!

“YSI’s expertise in field and outdoor, environmental applications strongly enhances and broadens our analytical instrumentation platform,” said Chris McIntire, president of ITT’s Analytics business area.

YSI, with a legacy of invention and innovation, was founded in 1948, and reported 2010 global revenues of $101 million. Since 1990, YSI has demonstrated a commitment to its core values and good corporate citizenship through the YSI Foundation.

ITT Analytics is a leading manufacturer of premium field, portable, laboratory and online analytical instruments used in water and wastewater, environmental, medical, and food and beverage applications. The company’s meters, sensors, analyzers and related consumables are used every day by thousands of end-users worldwide to analyze and control quality in countless industrial applications where precise measurement is required. ITT Analytics’ products are sold under the globally recognized brands WTW, SI Analytics, OI Analytical, Royce Technologies, Aanderaa Data Instruments (AADI), Global Water Instrumentation, ebro and Bellingham & Stanley.

New man in sales & marketing

A new member has joined the Management Board of Eplan Software & Service. Haluk Menderes has joined Eplan as the new Managing Director of Sales & Marketing on July 1, 2011. He is the successor to Hans Hässig. Together with Maximilian Brandl, Chairman of the Board of Management, he will be enhancing the future of this engineering solutions provider.

“I am really looking forward to this new mission”, says Haluk Menderes. "Eplan's strength in innovations and the countless opportunities in the international market are a great challenge for me."  
His stated objective is to develop the market lead of Eplan on an international level and to increase its market shares in the global engineering environment. Menderes is convinced: "We can optimize the processes of our customers with our engineering solutions over the long term, thereby increasing their productivity and supporting innovations as well."

Haluk Menderes' most recent position was Executive Vice President Sales and Marketing for the ESI-Group. His vast experience within the business of software and professional services solutions - especially for simulated and virtual prototyping - offers numerous opportunities for the expansion of Eplan business. His areas of responsibility at ESI, MSC.Software and MARC Analysis Research Corporation, all had an international focus. It is his intention to intensively drive Eplan's global expansion.

Menderes has spent several years in the CAE engineering departments of MBB and IABG (German Aerospace Industry) as an aviation and aerospace engineer. As a result, he is knowledgeable about requirements in all business sectors - from the classical design department to Senior management.

Reliable protection for motors and plant components

Monitoring relays with IO-Link interface

The Siemens Industry Automation Division has equipped its complete range of monitoring relays with the IO-Link interface. The relays protect motors and plant components reliably by monitoring parameters such as temperature, speed, network quality, current and voltage. The relays communicate with the control level via IO-Link to transfer, for example, measured values and messages. The Sirius 3UG48 monitoring relays for electrical and mechanical measurements monitor the observance of parameterizable limits for speed, network quality, current, power factor (cos phi) or voltage. The Sirius 3RS14 and 3RS15 temperature monitoring relays have between one and three resistance sensors or thermocouples for controlling temperatures from -99 to +1,800 degrees Celsius, and can also be used for simple control tasks . The new monitoring relays can also fulfill their monitoring tasks reliably without an IO-Link connection to a controller.

Connecting the new Sirius relay via an IO-Link to the control level facilitates efficient, central parameter assignment as well as detailed fault localization and diagnostics. This simplifies commissioning and maintenance. The devices have several LEDs and a display for showing actual values and can be used directly in the control cabinet for diagnostic purposes. The values are also displayed in the central control system via the IO-Link for simple further processing. The new Sirius relays are parameterized either directly at the device or from the central control system via the IO-Link. Data synchronization with the higher-level control system ensures that the system documentation is up-to-date at all times. New parameters are automatically assigned by a parameter server, which makes it considerably easier to replace any devices. For efficient energy management, the Sirius relays 3UG48 also support the data formats defined in the Profienergy profile.

IO-Link is a communication standard for uniformly linking sensors and switching devices to the control level by means of a cost-effective, point-to-point connection. IO-Link facilitates central fault localization and diagnostics down to sensor/actuator level, and simplifies commissioning and maintenance, because parameter data can be dynamically changed directly from the application. This helps to increase plant availability and lower engineering expenditure. As an open interface, IO-Link can be integrated into all conventional fieldbus and automation systems.

When things get really colourful

With their new BFS 33M colour sensor Balluff introduces a true-colour sensor of the highest class. No matter what kind of objects you show the sensor, it can discriminate them all with unerring accuracy. Even the slightest shades, smallest gray level differences or minimal changes to the surface properties are detected without effort. It precisely detects an object and switches the corresponding output with lightning speed. Up to seven objects can be signaled on the switching outputs in this way. In addition the L*a*b color values can also be directly output on a serial interface. Special compensation and individualized calibration means the sensor achieves extremely high accuracy over a long period.

The BFS 33M is more than a simple color sensor. As a True Colour sensor it precisely detects every colour in the technical spectrum, making it ideal for use in a variety of demanding applications including robotics, automated assembly, in the packaging industry or wood processing industry. The rugged aluminum sensor housing is not only attractive and modern, but also meets the special needs of machine and systems builders. The sensor is always used in conjunction with a fiber optic cable, so that applications under especially harsh conditions and tight mounting spaces can be handled.

Together with an optional lens from Balluff even ranges of up to 400mm and beyond are easily within reach. Metal parts in finishing processes can be monitored, or various material qualities selected. The high switching frequency of 1.5 kHz makes it possible to monitor even fast processes such as in the printing industry. All the sensor settings can be conveniently made and displayed using user-friendly software. This means the sensor will not only be up and running in no time, but the user will also always know its status. The BFS 33 is the ideal tool for automated quality control in running processes.

Monday, September 5, 2011

Analysis and MasterChef!

Happy cooking on MasterChef!
Eurolec have been the Irish distributor for Grant Instruments for over 25 years. The renowned manufacturer of multi function data loggers and temperature controlled laboratory equipment have in recent years been producing high quality Sous Vide cooking baths for the restaurant & catering sectors – these baths will feature in the forthcoming MasterChef Ireland series in early September.

Recently they were also awarded the British distributorship for the range of Ono Sokki instruments.This is in addition to their existing Irish sales territory

Ono Sokki specialise in a range of hand held and advanced analytical instrumentation especially suited to the automotive and mechanical research sectors including a variety of tachometers (from portable multipurpose units to sophisticated dedicated instruments for e.g. diesel or petrol engines) linear gauges, torque meters and FFT analysers.

Award for European distributor

Members of the Rutronik and Omron
management teams presenting award
to Volker Buchmann, Rutronik,
emech marketing director at
Rutronik HQ (Ispringen, D)
Omron Electronic Components has presented Rutronik, one of the leading broadline component distributors, with a special European distributor award for the 2010/2011 year.

The award has been given to Rutronik for unprecedented business growth during the last 12 months. 2010 was the first full year that Rutronik have held the Omron franchise in all European regions. During this time Rutronik sales of Omron switches, connectors, sensors and relays have grown faster than any other distributor in Omron’s European sales channel.

Alex Grout, Omron European distribution manager, commented, “During the last 12 months the relationship between Omron and Rutronik has blossomed across all levels of the business. The presentation of this award is fully merited and we look forward to continued business growth and new business development throughout 2011 and into 2012.” He continued, “Rutronik have been very successful in identifying new business opportunities in growing markets across Europe. We are particularly happy with Rutronik’s achievement to promote a broad line up of Omron components, including switches, connectors, sensors and relays.”

Volker Buchmann
, Rutronik, marketing director electromechanical components, added, “Rutronik’s focus on demand creation coupled with our strong team of business development managers has ensured that Omron has become our largest European emech component supplier for 2011. We have had to overcome a challenging European market place during the last 12 to 18 months and Omron have been fully supportive of our plans and strategies to develop and grow our European wide business.”

Power solutions specialist appoints new EMEA director

New senior appointment to support continued business growth

Tim Worley CEO and the new Powerstax
Director of Sales EMEA, Rob Hill
Powerstax has appointed a new Director of Sales, EMEA. Rob Hill is returning to Britain from the USA, where for the last six years he has held a number of senior posts in the power industry, to take up this new role.

Tim Worley, CEO of Powerstax, comments; "Powerstax has continued to grow  its export business throughout the global downturn and we are making this strategic appointment to ensure that we find new opportunities in EMEA, while continuing to support our existing customers and sales channels. Our success in the USA is due to our philosophy of becoming an extension to our customer’s design process and offering a full and fast response in every area of our business. As our business continues to grow Rob will ensure EMEA customers have a senior voice within our company”

In his last three career moves Hill has been at senior management or director level and has overseen product marketing, product and business development, global marketing communications, strategic and major OEM sales, sales management and distribution channel management. He has first-hand experience of the rapidly changing high technology environments of North America, Asia, and Europe. Before leaving for the USA Hill held various positions with power conversion, networking and data acquisition companies and holds a BEng. in Electronic Engineering (BSEE).

Worley continues; “We have been looking for the right person for this senior role in Powerstax for some time and Rob brings a great deal of relevant experience with him from which both Powerstax and our customers will benefit”.
Powerstax provides standard and custom power solutions for industrial, defence, homeland security, shipboard and ground systems and mobile/vehicle mounted wireless and radar systems, telecomm infrastructure and security systems.

Simplified wireless communication for the process industry

The diagram shows how data from
a wireless sensor in a mesh network
are integrated into a host
automation system. The specification
covers the following three main
functions necessary for the
integration: Gateway
configuration, wireless sensor
configuration and operation
PROFIBUS & PROFINET International (PI), Fieldbus Foundation (FF) and HART Communication Foundation (HCF) are currently working intensively on the development of an architecture for a WirelessHART gateway. The background to this is that although the process industry appreciates the benefits of wireless communication it is still not making sufficient use of it.WirelessHART uses a mesh network, i.e. each device can generate or receive signals (sensors/actuators) and pass them on to surrounding devices (repeater function). According to users the greatest obstacle when implementing wireless systems is the complicated integration of WirelessHART mesh networks into the existing automation environment.

The gateway is designed to facilitate the bi-directional communication of a WirelessHART mesh network with a host via the PI protocols PROFIBUS or PROFINET or the Fieldbus Foundation’s HSE (High Speed Ethernet) protocol. The device ensures a standardized global architecture and simplifies integration between different host automation systems. The I/O mapping of the wireless-sensor-parameters (device address, device designation, process variables, process alarms etc.) and the use of the device description files are likewise standardized in the PROFIBUS, PROFINET and HSE protocols.

This architecture puts manufacturers in a position to provide marketable gateway products as well as the corresponding configuration software. As with the previously successful cooperation between the three organizations on the Electronic Device Description Language (EDDL), this agreement on a common architecture for the gateway is a further step towards open systems for end-users in process automation.

Co-operation in thin film PV R&D

Imec and Solliance have announced that imec will be a full partner of Solliance and will integrate its thin film PV R&D efforts in Solliance. With imec as a partner, Solliance aims to be an R&D cluster bringing thin film solar energy technology to excellence.

Solliance works in close cooperation with industry, both to fulfill short-term needs of industry, and to convey promising programs of mid- and long-term research. It focuses on three main thin film technologies: thin film Si, alternatives for CIGS, and organic photovoltaics (OPV). For these principal themes Solliance will collaborate with the industry at its facilities in Eindhoven as well as at imec’s facilities in Leuven, providing direct answers to the industry’s most pressing questions. Solliance also concentrates on generic technologies that will be vital to any thin film PV industry: testing, characterization and monitoring, laser technologies, light management by mechanical texturization, transparent conductive layers, monolithic interconnection, new OPV device development, thin film deposition techniques, sheet-to-sheet processing, roll-to-roll (R2R) processing, and in-line monitoring.

Says Luc Van den hove, President and CEO imec: “The joining of forces in Solliance creates focus and critical mass, needed to be a top level player in the world of thin film PV.” And Hein Willems, Solliance’s managing director: “Strengthened by imec as the fifth member, our research now stretches across the entire field, from fundamentals of materials science to sophisticated production technologies.”  Imec specifically excels in nanoelectronics, and harbors CIGS-related and OPV research teams of significant volume and expertise. It will now continue its thin film R&D within the Solliance cooperation.

Solliance’s ambition is to strengthen the position of the Eindhoven-Leuven-Aachen triangle (ELAT region) as a world player in thin film PV. Solliance now creates synergy among more than 250 researchers with this common goal. Solliance aims to realize this ambition by joint use of state-of-the-art infrastructure, alignment of research programs, and close cooperation with the solar business community. Solliance is amongst others financially supported by the Dutch Province of Brabant.

The announcement is being celebrated at the annual imec booth reception at PVSEC in Hamburg on 7 September at the imec booth, hall B4G booth C11, at 16.30 o’clock.

Keynote speaker for emissions event

The organisers of CEM 2011 (The 10th international conference on emissions monitoring) have announced  that Professor Josef Vejvoda is to give the keynote lecture at this year's event, which will take place at the Corinthia Hotel in Prague (CZ) from 5th to 7th October.

Professor Vejvoda has had a long and distinguished career in source emissions monitoring and control, beginning as a researcher at the Fuel Research Institute in Prague, after which he became head of the Air Pollution Control section at the Czech Republic Ministry of Environment. More recently, he was Associate Professor at the Institute of Chemical Technology in Prague, lecturing in air pollution control.

Comprised of a Conference and an International Exhibition, CEM 2011 is the latest in a series of European events focusing on developments in measurement techniques, environmental legislation and standardisation relevant to the source emissions monitoring of atmospheric pollutants.

Delegates will be provided with the latest help and guidance on European regulations and will have an opportunity to meet around 40 of the world's leading emissions monitoring technology manufacturers.