Friday, September 16, 2011

ISA100 receives IEC approval - yes and no!

The following is the text of a release issued by the International Society of Automation (ISA) on 16th September 2011.

Not quite dissenting!

Walt Boyes, Editor at ControlGlobal, and who is listed as a voting member of the ISA100 Standards Committee, comments:

"Actually, it has been listed by the IEC as a publicly available specification. It has not been approved as an IEC standard, which the release implies.

'Further, it has not been submitted to ANSI, and there have been significant questions raised repeatedly about how well ISA follows the "open consensus process as accredited" by ANSI.

...."Interestingly, ISA, apparently believing that the submission of ISA100 to ANSI would be appealed, submitted to IEC via Tony Capel's CANADIAN national committee. ANSI has not commented on the propriety of ISA doing this, and some have questioned the reasoning behind this apparent "end-around" of ANSI, especially since ISA has in this release repeatedly implied ANSI approval."

See his blog "Truthiness is next to Godliness - ISA announces IEC approval of ISA100" (16/9/2011)
ISA-100.11a-2011, “Wireless Systems for Industrial Automation: Process Control and Related Applications,” has been approved by the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC) as a publicly available specification, or PAS. This follows its approval earlier this year as an ISA standard, developed per ISA’s open consensus process as accredited by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI).

“There has been a great deal of interest to move ISA-100.11a into the IEC process, and I am very pleased this has been accomplished with its unanimous approval as an IEC PAS," stated Tony Capel of Comgate Engineering, who is the chair of IEC SC65C, the committee that will oversee the standard. “An IEC PAS allows the early publication of a standard that has obtained consensus in a professional society such as ISA, and will further promote the use of this standard throughout the world,” added Capel, who serves on the Canadian National Committee to the IEC.

Unlike nonaccredited processes typically used by vendors’ consortia to develop specifications, ISA’s ANSI-accredited procedures call for direct participation and voting by experts from end-user companies, ensuring that their views and needs are heard and reflected in the resulting standard. ISA-100.11a-2011 received overwhelming approval from voting members on ISA100 who represent end-user companies where wireless systems will be deployed in real-world industrial applications.

"From my perspective of 42 years as an end user in the refining and petrochemical industry, I am especially proud that ISA-100.11a is the first industrial wireless standard developed in an open, accredited standards process with direct input and participation of experts from end-user companies," stated ISA100 Co-chair Herman Storey of Herman Storey Consulting. "The fact that 92% of ISA100 voting members from end-user companies cast ballots to approve the standard sends a very strong message to industry, in my view."

ISA-100.11a-2011 was developed to provide reliable and secure wireless operation for noncritical monitoring, alerting, supervisory control, open loop control and closed loop control applications. The standard defines the protocol suite, system management, gateway and security specifications for low-data-rate wireless connectivity with fixed, portable and moving devices supporting very limited power consumption requirements. The application focus is to address the performance needs of applications, such as monitoring and process control, where latencies on the order of 100 ms can be tolerated, with optional behavior for shorter latency.

With over 600 members from across the globe, ISA100 brings together wireless experts representing diverse industrial and technical interests in an open forum

Temp, flow & pressure calibration

New Calibrator for Temperature Flow & Pressure

Click picture to see video!
Quantitech has launched a new hand-held calibrator; the TCR Tecora Flowcal, which has been developed to enable the fast, accurate calibration of high volume air samplers.

Traceable to UKAS standards, the Flowcal provides a convenient and highly accurate method with which to check the performance of air samplers such as the ECHO ambient air particulate sampler. The Flowcal is able to operate either of two flow cells: a Hi Flow cell, with a range of 150 – 600 l/min and a Mid Flow cell, with a range of 10 – 60 l/min.

The Flowcal is already being used in Britain by users of the ECHO high volume air sampler for ambient monitoring. Quantitech's Dominic Duggan says: "The Flowcal is an ideal accessory for such samplers because of its accuracy and simplicity; the unit's screen commands guide users through the process, storing data for subsequent transfer to PC. As a result it is possible to perform a traceable calibration on any air sampler, in the field and in just a few minutes."

Production data on iPad

Industrial Thinking have released a new version of their Counterpoint Trending package on the iPad/iPhone.

Counterpoint Trend Mobile now adds Real-time remote access to your Production data directly on your iPad as well as iPhone . This new version offers significant performance benefits too for those times when your data connection speed is less than ideal. The new version has just become available on the AppStore and is free to download and try .

The intuitive user interface enables you to Browse, Search and Trend tags from any of your configured Data Historian(s).

Supported Data Historian interfaces include most of the Industry Standard Historians, such as AspenTech Infoplus.21, OSI Pi, OPC DA and HDA, Honeywell PHD and VSystem.

Rapid analysis of precious metals & high concentration elements

Thermo Fisher Scientific has a new software module to enable high-precision and automated analysis of precious metals and high concentration elements. 

The Thermo Scientific iTEVA Precision software seamlessly integrates with the Thermo Scientific iCAP 6000 Series of inductively coupled plasma optical emission spectrometers (ICP-OES) to deliver analytical results with high precision. Designed specifically for the metallurgy industry, the new module enhances the Thermo Scientific iTEVA software solution and delivers a simple and efficient workflow for high-precision analysis with real-time data processing using the bracketing standards approach.

ICP-OES is one of the most popular elemental analysis techniques due to its rapid, robust and multi-element capabilities. It can, however, be challenging to analyze elements in samples of high financial value, or with analytes at high percentage concentrations on a daily basis. The unique iTEVA Precision software module meets this challenge by using bracketing algorithms (as stipulated by the International Organization for Standardisation (ISO) for data processing) to generate high-quality ISO-compliant data in real-time.

The software features advanced data processing, which routinely enables relative standard deviation (RSD) values of <0.3 percent between sample aliquots, a notable enhancement in analytical precision for the ICP-OES technique. Furthermore, the powerful automated data processing capability makes labor-intensive external calculations unnecessary and eliminates the potential for human transcription errors associated with performing manual ”off-line” calculations. An added benefit of the new software module is its ability to perform required post-run data reprocessing without re-analyzing samples; this accelerates workflows and conserves high-value samples.

The iTEVA Precision software provides flexible options for unit sets that are user-definable on a per analyte basis. Customizable data filtering and reporting tools are also available, enabling users to maintain their preferred workflow while automating current sample analysis processes. In addition, the software offers multi-language support, including English, German, French, Chinese, Japanese and Russian.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Stabilised 24 V power supplies

The Siemens Industry Automation Division has expanded its power supply offering with the new product range Sitop lite. The power supplies named Sitop PSU100L are designed for single-phase connection and offer all important functionalities at an attractive price/performance ratio. They deliver controlled 24 Volt and are available in three performance classes with rated output currents of 2.5, 5, and 10 amperes. Power supplies of the same type can be connected in parallel to increase the performance.

The new product range has been primarily designed for use in machines and plants whose automation components have to be reliably supplied with 24 Volt but only have basic demands with regard to the scope of functions provided by the power supply. Like all Sitop power supplies, the new Sitop lite products are also characterised by particularly high reliability and fulfill all the requirements for universal use. For example, the wide-range input with manual switchover supports connection to all industrial supply systems.

The small widths of 32.5, 50, and 70 millimeters mean that the primary switched-mode regulators occupy little space on the DIN rail. The fan-free power supplies can be operated at ambient temperatures from 0 to 60 degrees Celsius and have an efficiency of up to 89 percent. Thus the devices use little energy and only produce small quantities of dissipated heat in the control cabinet. The operating state "24 V DC ok" is signaled on an LED. Electronic short-circuit and overload protection features provide safety in the event of faults.

For use on the North American market, the Sitop PSU100L power supplies have been granted approvals in accordance with CE and cULus (Underwriters Laboratories certification for Canada and the USA).

Motion control network certified safe!

TÜV Rheinland confirms that Mechatrolink satisfies the requirements of IEC61508 safety integrity level SIL3.

The Mechatrolink Members Association (MMA) has announced that its Mechatrolink motion control network meets industry safety standards. Certification was received after an independent third party, TÜV Rheinland, confirmed that these specifications satisfied the requirements of IEC61508 safety integrity level SIL3.

A safety system can be constructed using the Mechatrolink network by simply adding a safety master such as a safety PLC and safety slaves, such as safety I/O devices, to the existing system. No special cabling is required for connecting Mechatrolink Safety compliant devices; standard Mechatrolink cables can be used. Up to 61 safety slave devices can be connected.  The Mechatrolink Safety and standard protocols can co-exist on the same network.

Mechatrolink is the most widely used motion control network in Asia. The certification of the Mechatrolink field network for safety makes it possible for MMA members to build motion control and machine control systems for use in applications that comply with safety standards.

Mechatrolink connects devices such as servo motors, servo amps and I/O to each other and to motion controllers such as PLCs, PACs and motion controllers. Mechatrolink is available in both RS-485 and Ethernet versions, operates at speeds up to 100 Mbps, and can support up to 62 simultaneous devices.

The MMA’s Safety Working Group developed the specifications for the safety communications protocol. The Safety Working Group consists of seven corporate members: Inter Factory Partners Co., Ltd.; Digital Electronics Corporation; Nikki Denso Co., Ltd.; HIMA Japan; Magnescale Co., Ltd.; Yaskawa Electric Corporation; and Yokogawa Electric Corporation.

Partner programme announced

Yokogawa Corporation of America has announced its new VigilantPlant® Solutions Partner Program (VPS Partner Program).

The VPS Partners program creates a collaborative partnership with select System Integrator’s (SI’s) to deliver best in class industrial automation solutions to the process industry. The program’s goal is to equip our partners with the necessary tools and training to provide a superior level of customer support, ensuring desired business results in today’s demanding industrial automation environment.

The program provides access to their VigilantPlant Solutions portfolio including the industry’s most reliable products. Under the program, VPS Partners are trained and certified to deliver DCS, PLC, RTU products, as well as, advanced application software solutions. Support comes from some of the leading industry experts, both domestic and from our group companies around the global, which have executed and supplied over 20,000 control systems worldwide.

Having introduced the world’s first DCS in 1975, Yokogawa has provided Industrial Automation solutions for over 35 years. The VPS Partner Program is designed to connect our portfolio and expertise with SI’s and customers in all process industries.

Creating Value Based Partnership
Yokogawa Corporation of America will collaborate with Solutions Partners to develop a competitive approach for each automation project opportunity. Providing our customers with the best solution to meet their needs and contributing to the profitable growth of their business is our primary objective. By working closely with our partners, we can develop solutions to optimize engineering and integration efficiency.

Becoming a VigilantPlant Solutions Partner
The VigilantPlant Solutions Partner network consists of carefully selected SI’s to deliver best in class services to our customers. The selection process targets partnership opportunities that provide mutual benefit to Yokogawa and our Partners while allowing us to meet and exceed the needs of our expanding customer base.

Ethernet & broadband networks for harsh operations

Souriau has developed and released gauge #8 quadrax contacts which have demonstrated in an operational environment that they are compatible with communication protocols requiring up to category 6. These protocols include those for the flagship quadrax application which is, of course, Ethernet in harsh operating environments.

For Ethernet, Souriau’s quadrax connectors can use either the 100BaseT protocol over one quadrax cable, reaching throughputs of 100 Mbit/s, or Ethernet 1000BaseTX, which can allow transmission of up to 1 Gbit/s over two quadrax cables.

Souriau’s quadrax range is available to EN3645, EN3646, ARINC 600 and EN2997 standards, so that Ethernet protocols can be used in the majority of approved and proven aeronautics connectors.

The (patented) design of Souriau’s gauge #8 quadrax contacts ensures easier, repeatable cabling. This guarantees the overall transmission quality, providing the best possible throughput. In addition, these contacts are robust enough to offer secure data transmission over 500 mating operations, with the added ability to handle shocks and vibrations.

Applicable to the vast majority of our inserts with gauge #8 cavities, Souriau’s quadrax contacts allow unrivalled flexibility for harsh-environment applications which are increasingly resorting to Ethernet for their transmission protocol.

Temp added to CO2 sensor

E+E Elektronik has added an additional passive temperature measurement function to the tried-and-tested EE85 CO2 transmitter for precise measurement of CO2 concentrations and temperatures in HVAC applications. CO2 and temperature measurement in a single device cuts installation costs for sensors.

The combined CO2 temperature transmitter is ideally suited for applications in the fields of building management and demand controlled ventilation. The elegant, compact housing enables easy installation directly at the ventilation duct using a mounting flange.

The CO2 measurement of the EE85 is carried out using infrared technology (NDIR). The patented auto-calibrate function compensates for any ageing effects (even if there is no fresh air supply) and ensures excellent long-term stability. The air to be monitored is conveyed to the measurement cell in the housing by means of convection via the measuring head and a 12-mm pipe. The exchange of gas with the measurement cell is performed by diffusion via a diaphragm. In this way, the gas in the measurement cell circulates in a closed system. This prevents any soiling of the optical measurement path and any associated inaccuracies in the measurements.

The temperature the sensor is installed directly in the tip of the measurement sensor and optimally protected against soiling by a diaphragm filter. The passive temperature sensor signal is available at the connection terminals in the housing and can be connected directly to the majority of control devices.

The measuring ranges 0 – 2.000 / 5.000 / 10.000 ppm are available. The temperature range is -20…60°C.

Since a CO2 concentration of room air above 1.000 ppm affects our performance, it is important to measure the CO2 concentration in addition to the standard climatic conditions for rooms (such as temperature and relative humidity). In this way, it is possible to take early and cost-effective actions to remedy poor air quality (for example, by increasing the fresh air supply as required).

• E+E Electronik are represented in Ireland by Instrument Technology Ltd

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Accelerating the journey towards business optimisation!

Invensys Operations Management will host its annual series of international user and industry events. OpsManage’11, (#Opsmanage) a multi-discipline networking and educational experience, offers manufacturing executives, engineers, operators, IT professionals, maintenance workers and solutions providers an in-depth understanding of how to use their production systems to empower people and accelerate the journey towards business optimisation. The company’s open InFusion Enterprise Control System is to be in the spotlight, including the key automation, operations management, workflow and collaboration components that fully embrace a customer’s existing investments and together deliver the platform for that journey.

• Last year Read-out attended and our report Innovation is everywhere! was filed in November 2010.

The events kick off in Europe at the CNIT La Défense Conference Center in Paris, France November 3-4, followed closely by the event in North America, to be held November 8 to 10 at the Gaylord Opryland Hotel in Nashville, Tenn. Additional OpsManage’11 conferences will be held November 14 to 16 in Queensland, Australia; November 15 in Tokyo; November 20 and 21 in the United Arab Emirates; November 24 in Seoul, South Korea; December 9 in Kaohsiung, Taiwan; and December 14 in Mumbai, India.

The OpsManage’11 event in Paris will include panel sessions, presentations and EXPO demonstrations covering topics such as asset management and effectiveness; mobile solutions; safety practices; manufacturing intelligence; process automation; cyber security; collaboration and workflow; plant and enterprise application integration; and energy management. Invensys brand users groups, including Avantis® , Foxboro®, Triconex® and Wonderware® will be held as part of the events, and customer sessions will show Invensys Operations Management solutions in practice, focusing on specific application areas and vertical industries, including chemicals; food and beverage; hydrocarbon processing; pharmaceuticals; power;  upstream oil and gas; infrastructure and water and wastewater. More than 80 different sessions will cover virtually every aspect of enterprise control, from industry and business solutions; to instrumentation, automation and safety; to connecting operations and maintenance with ERP strategy.

“OpsManage’11 is an opportunity for Invensys employees, clients and partners to share, learn and accelerate their journey towards business optimization. Given the current global state of business, there is heightened awareness about the importance of manufacturing to all economies, and OpsManage is a great opportunity to see how technology from Invensys Operations Management can help,”
said Mark Davidson, vice president, global promotional marketing and communications, Invensys Operations Management. “OpsManage’10 drew more than 4,000 attendees and received a 97 percent approval rating. This year, attendees will be able to collaborate with Invensys and other industry experts in interactive sessions designed to help them balance the need for operational excellence across four critical areas: Control, Asset, Environment & Safety and, most importantly, People. Not only will they learn how to capitalize on new economic opportunities that help differentiate themselves in the market, they’ll see innovative new technology that links, informs and accelerates real-time business decisions, making the most of their most valuable and strategic asset—their people—to optimize their business performance.” 

The OpsManage’11 EXPO in Paris will offer hands-on demonstrations of Invensys Operations Management and partner solutions, including offerings from the company’s industry-leading Avantis, Eurotherm®, Foxboro, Eckardt, SimSci-Esscor®,  Triconex® and Wonderware brands, all components of the InFusion Enterprise Control System. A variety of Invensys ecosystem partners will present methodologies, solutions and expertise for optimizing business performance, and the latest open technologies and collaborative business models will be explored. As global sponsor, Microsoft will be on hand to discuss the results of co-innovation between Invensys, Invensys partners and Invensys customers using their latest technology capabilities.

Keynote speakers in Paris will include Senior Customer Executives and Sudipta Bhattacharya, the company’s president and chief executive officer.

Flat panel computer

GE Intelligent Platforms has announced the Wolverine III Rugged Flat Panel Computer designed specifically to withstand the rigors of deployment in harsh, hazardous (Hazloc) applications such as oil and gas exploration and drilling where salt, spray, dust, shock, vibration and extremes of temperature provide the most challenging environments for computers. Used for data gathering and the control or operation of sophisticated equipment, it represents a complete redesign compared with its predecessor which, with its use of GE-patented technology, delivers significantly higher performance, reliability and maintainability while weighing substantially less.

Unlike many displays, the Wolverine III’s resistive 15-inch antiglare, scratch-resistant touchscreen is readable even in direct sunlight. Its rugged design enables it to operate within a temperature range of -20° to +60°C as standard and to withstand extreme shock and vibration. Its low weight of 22.5lbs make Wolverine III easier to install and safer and more convenient to transport.

The computing platform is a COM Express® module and carrier board designed specifically by GE for the Wolverine III. At the heart of the COM Express module is an Intel® Core™2 Duo 2.26GHz processor. This, together with 4 GBytes of DDR3 memory, delivers high performance. Wolverine III also features a reduced component and subassembly count, together with extensive edge connection and a 32GByte solid state disk drive, to maximize reliability. It addresses customer requirements to shorten MTTR – Mean Time To Repair – by embracing the ATEX Zone 2 concept of user-serviceability; its highly modular construction makes it easy and quick for customers to repair, minimizing downtime. On-board system monitoring allows potential failure to be identified, allowing remedial action to be taken while minimally disrupting operations.

“Professionals working in hazardous, harsh locations such as oil platforms will confirm that rugged reliability and ease of maintenance of equipment are fundamental requirements,” said Tom Behnke, Product Manager, Systems and Displays at GE Intelligent Platforms. “The challenge is to do everything possible to maximize reliability – but also to acknowledge that, at some stage, repairs may be required, and therefore make equipment as easy as possible to service so that it can become operational again in a minimum amount of time. Wolverine III rises to both these challenges.”

Designed to be upgradable with future generations of processor, the Wolverine III is housed in a NEMA 4 environmentally sealed enclosure with corrosion resistance. An optional heater allows an operational temperature range of -40° to +60° C.

Power quality analysis extension

Outram Research has announced a new revision of firmware for their PM7000 power quality analyser, Waveform Capture Extension, which allows capture of long-duration transients and waveform events. The new feature is designed to help engineers troubleshoot long-duration problems and to see the consequential impact of disturbances.

Whilst most transients and waveform events are over in less than three or four cycles, occasionally it is useful to capture longer periods. Examples include monitoring the network’s recovery from sag after reclosures, or to view the reaction of downstream control systems such as wind turbine control.

The Waveform Capture Extension allows for selective extension of the capture window beyond the 160ms that was previously possible, enabling recording for up to 60 seconds. Extensions of the different capture triggers can be set individually, enabling complete control over the monitoring of the disturbances that are recorded for the longer period. The PM7000 can automatically terminate recording when the Sag/Surge is over to optimise the use of the available storage.

Waveforms recorded by the Extended Waveform Capture feature can be displayed and analysed in Pronto, Outram’s logger control software that will also manage the data, produce comprehensive graphs, generate reports and export the waveform sample data to other desktop software packages such as Microsoft Excel.

The new firmware and Extended Waveform Capture feature are fully backwards-compatible, allowing previously saved configurations to be used without modification. Furthermore new configurations can be loaded into a PM7000 with older firmware, with the settings for Extended Waveform Capture ignored if the feature is not available.

The new Extended Waveform Capture feature is now provided as standard across the family of Outram Ranger PM7000 power analysers. New firmware to upgrade existing analysers is available on request.

Supporting high-speed serial point-to-point connections

ADLINK Technology  has introduced the cPCI-3970 Series, the first 3U CompactPCI PlusIO compatible processor blade in its product lineup that supports high-speed serial point-to-point connections.

The ADLINK cPCI-3970 Series is equipped with the latest quad and dual core 2nd Generation Intel® Core™ i7/i5 processor with ECC memory support, and the Intel® QM67 Platform Controller Hub (PCH). It is a high performance solution for applications in industrial control and automation, transportation, and medical segments that require enhanced graphics capabilities, ECC memory and high speed I/O interconnects.

The cPCI-3970 Series includes two blade types based on the same electrical and mechanical design: the cPCI-3970 which is equipped with HM connectors, and the fully PICMG 2.30 compliant cPCI-3971 which features an Ultra Hard Metric (UHM) J2 connector with a data transfer speed of 5 Gb/s. Both products are compatible with the CompactPCI PlusIO pin assignment and support PCI Express Gen2 x4, three SATA ports, three USB 2.0 ports and two Gigabit Ethernet ports at the J2 connector.

“ADLINK’s cPCI-3970 Series has an outstanding performance-per-watt ratio and is designed for maximum interoperability, expandability and flexibility," states Eric Kao, Director of ADLINK's Modular Computing Product Center. "CompactPCI PlusIO compatibility allows the cPCI-3971 to be electrically and mechanically backward compatible with CompactPCI and paves a smooth path for upgrading the legacy CompactPCI parallel bus to modern high speed serial interfaces. It can work in hybrid backplanes with a legacy 32-bit/33MHz CompactPCI bus for existing CompactPCI peripherals and modern high speed point-to-point serial connections. The cPCI-3970 Series is well suited for the requirements of today’s embedded applications.”

“ADLINK's cPCI-3970 Series is equipped with the 2nd Generation Intel® Core™ i7 processor and the Intel® QM67 PCH. This powerful combination provides built-in HD graphics, smart multi-tasking capabilities and improved power efficiency. Intel® Hyper-Threading Technology and Intel® Turbo Boost Technology 2.0 are supported to use processor resources more efficiently with multiple threads to running on each core and dynamically adapt processor frequency to match the workload,” said Matt Langman, marketing director of Intel’s Embedded Computing Division.”

The cPCI-3970 Series is a 3U CompactPCI blade with rich features for different applications. For high density computing applications, it can operate in a system slot as a master or in a peripheral slot as a standalone blade. In addition, the cPCI-3970 Series is compliant with the PICMG 2.9 specification and supports system management functions based on the Intelligent Platform Management Interface (IPMI) as well as hardware monitoring of physical characteristics such as CPU and system temperature, DC voltages and power status. With different riser cards installed and the addition of a Rear Transition Module (RTM), the cPCI-3970 Series provides versatile I/O interfaces up to two DisplayPort/DVI/HDMI, four serial ports, four SATA ports, five USB 2.0 ports, four GbE ports, PS/2 KB/MS, audio ports, and one PMC/XMC site for expansion flexibility. Trusted Platform Module (TPM 1.2) is also supported to provide efficient hardware-based data protection.

The  cPCI-3970 Series supports up to two dual-mode DisplayPorts for dual independent digital display outputs. The DisplayPort supports single link DVI or HDMI by passive adapter cable and analog VGA interface by active adapter cable. With the ADLINK XMC-G460 graphics module installed in the XMC site, the cPCI-3970 Series supports up to four independent displays. Storage interfaces supported by the cPCI-3970 Series include one SATA 6 Gb/s direct connector for a 2.5” HDD/SSD, CompactFlash socket, CFast socket and three SATA ports on RTM with RAID 0/1/5/10 support.

The ADLINK cPCI-3970 Series supports the following operating systems: Microsoft Windows® XP, Microsoft Windows® 7, RedHat Enterprise Linux 6 and VxWorks.

PXI Matrices

Pickering Interfaces is expanding its range of 6U PXI matrices with the introduction of the 45-541 and 45-542 high density matrices.

The 45-541 is a reed relay matrix occupying one slot of a 6U PXI chassis which provides a 132x8 matrix that supports 0.5A switching and up to 10W hot switch capacity. User connections are provided through easy to use 50 way D Type connectors. The module includes BIRST (Built-In-Relay-Self-Test) capability that allows functional checks on all the reed relays to be conducted without the use of supporting test equipment.

The 45-542 is an electro-mechanical relay (EMR) based matrix occupying just one slot of a 6U PXI chassis supporting a 132x8 matrix with 1A, 60W switching capacity. It is user pin compatible with the 45-541.

The new modules each provide the highest density single slot solutions available in the 6U PXI format and are ideal for those users who have selected the increased board area that 6U offers over 3U PXI, when compared to their previous generation VXI/VME modular platforms. Providing a solutions based on the faster operating speed of reed relays and of the higher capacity EMR’s gives users a choice of pin compatible switching solutions.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Compact gas analyser expanded

A new version of the Ultramat 23 gas analyser from the Siemens Industry Automation Division records the concentration of oxygen using a paramagnetic measuring cell. The analyser combines the measurement of up to three infrared-sensitive gases and the paramagnetic oxygen measuring principle in one unit.

This new version supplements the previous versions of the analyser with electrochemical measuring cells. The most significant advantage of the paramagnetic measuring cell is its high sensitivity. It is now possible to reliably measure low oxygen concentrations in the range of less than 0.5 percent. In addition, the paramagnetic measurement can also be used with dry gases. Continuous analysis of gas concentrations using the Ultramat 23 means that process states can be precisely measured and effectively controlled. Typical applications for the new Siemens gas analyser include process controls in the cement and steel industries. Furthermore, the combination of Ultramat 23 with a paramagnetic measuring cell and Ultramat 23 with an H2S sensor is suitable for quality control during the production of biomethane and feeding of biogas into commercial gas distribution networks.

The automatic calibration function with ambient air significantly reduces the maintenance requirements. The open interface architecture with RS 485 based protocols, Profibus PA/DP, and ELAN supports and simplifies process integration. Furthermore, remote operation and control of the analyser is possible via Siprom GA or Simatic PDM (Process Device Manager).

Bottom line automation

People who enjoyed Peter Martins' excellent and tweet-praised keynote at the ISA Marketing & Sales Summit, last week in St Louis (MO US) will welcome this newly revised 2nd edition of his "Bottom-Line Automation" published by ISA.

This newly revised edition helps today’s manufacturing companies face the challenges of a global marketplace where every part of the operation must become more efficient to enhance the bottom line. Based on the results and conclusions of an applied research project of process manufacturing operations directed by the author, Bottom-Line Automation presents an overview of more than 30 years of industry trends, pointing out the strengths and pitfalls of each. The book also explains how manufacturers selected automation technology suppliers for state-of-the-art technological features in their systems rather than for the improvements the technology could offer the manufacturing operation. New topics in the book discuss the economic optimization of industrial assets.

Key findings include the fact that returns on automation investments were rarely, if ever, calculated. In fact, accounting systems were not even capable of measuring the performance offered by process automation systems. The author explains a strategy for measuring and improving automation system performance for the ultimate goal—the bottom line, and provides case studies of how such a strategy was implemented in three process manufacturing organizations. The author brings more than 30 years of industry experience, education, and research together in this unprecedented work.

See also Peter Martin's collaborative work with Greg Hales, Automation made easy, subtitled, "Everything You Wanted to Know about Automation-and Need to Ask!" which reviewed in our July 2009 article - Ask about automation!

Documenting calibrators

Fluke has introduced the 750 Series Documenting Process Calibrators. Process professionals have long relied on the Fluke 743/744 Documenting Process Calibrators for advanced instrument calibration, especially in rugged environments. Operating the new 750 Series is similar enough to the 743/744 that existing users will be able to immediately start using the 750 Series – no training required to get substantially increased performance from the new models.

These field tools calibrate temperature, pressure, voltage, current, resistance, and frequency and have three operating modes — measure, source, or simultaneous measure/source — enabling technicians to troubleshoot, calibrate or maintain instrumentation with just one tool.

The new750 Series features an easy-to-follow, menu-driven display that guides users through tasks. Programmable calibration routines enable technicians to create and run automated as-found/as-left procedures to ensure fast, consistent calibrations. The recorded results can then be easily downloaded to a PC via the USB port, eliminating the need for manual transcription.

Improvements over the original model include a graphical display that is now bright enough to allow readings to be seen in any light condition. The multi-lingual interface displays instructions in English, French, German, Spanish or Italian.
Another popular improvement is the new, rechargeable Li-ion battery pack, which provides enough power for an entire shift and can be charged from within the calibrator.

Brand-new and included with every Fluke 750 series calibrator is the C799 soft case. This unique case features a clear window to shield the calibrator from the elements while still allowing the operator full access to the calibrator’s controls and keyboard. The case design includes an input-output slot for test leads, open side pockets to connect a pressure module, and ample storage for a pressure module, hand pumps, test leads and interconnect cables.

Integrated HART communication capability
It is the first field calibrator for HART instruments that is both powerful and easy to use. The Fluke 754 offers fast HART communication and requires no external box or secondary tool to perform everyday HART calibration and maintenance. It is easy to update as additional instruments are added and new HART versions are released, and is backed by the service and support of Fluke, a member of the HART Communications Foundation.

Support for popular instrumentation management software
This series also works with the new Fluke DPC/TRACK™ 2 software for managing calibration records and data. It features an instrumentation database that makes it easy to manage instrumentation, create and schedule tests, load and unload the calibrator, print a variety of standard reports, and manage calibration data. The Fluke 750 Series also works with calibration management solutions from Honeywell Meridium, Emerson, Cornerstone, Yokogawa, Prime Technologies, Intergraph, and others.
The Fluke 750 series comes standard with three sets of stackable test leads, three sets of TP220 test probes with three sets of ‘extended tooth’ alligator clips, two sets of AC280 hook clips, C799 Field Soft Case, Li-ion battery pack, battery charger, USB communication cable, getting started guide, instruction manual on CD-ROM, NIST traceable certificate of calibration, DPC/TRACK 2 software sample, and a three-year warranty. The Fluke 754 includes a HART communication cable.

Position detector switches with integral M8 connector

ASCO Numatics, part of Emerson, has expanded its range of universal position detector switches with the addition of a version featuring an integral M8 connector. Available in reed switch or electronic versions, the switches are the smallest on the market. The new M8 universal position detector switches are compatible with any standard ASCO Numatics cylinder − reducing inventory for users.

Quick and easy to install and adjust, the switches feature LED status indicators and are supplied with position stops and retaining clips. They are suitable for use with voltages of 5 to 120 volts DC/AC, and are certified to CE, UL and cUL.

The new M8 versions join the existing line up of universal position detector switches, which include flying lead versions with M8, M10 or M12 connectors. There are also IP69K versions for food industry applications, and a range of accessories that covers mounting kits, adaptors, connectors and cable extenders.