Friday, January 6, 2012

Optimising industrial energy production & use

New Industrial Energy Group and "True Energy" technology to address €1.45 billion global imperative

Monitoring burner operation at
Tata Steel’s Port Townsend facility
The "Smart Energy Initiative" is a global programme just announced by Emerson Process Management. It is designed to combine its unmatched industrial energy expertise with advanced energy management technologies. This will enable customers to leverage more renewable fuels, lower energy costs and reduce emissions.

The company is focused on an estimated 1.45 billion euro market that is poised for strong growth as refineries, manufacturers, and other industrial customers face increased pressure to adopt lower-cost fuels. With energy comprising 30 per cent or more of a facility’s overall operating costs – combined with higher prices for fossil fuels and new global emissions mandates – industrial customers are increasingly looking to waste fuels, biomass, and other renewable sources as a solution to these challenges.

The new Industrial Energy Group will specifically focus on modernising and improving the performance of powerhouses, the onsite utilities that provide steam and electricity to power industrial operations, while also improving how the manufacturing process consumes energy. This holistic approach ensures the greatest efficiency in production of energy, plus reduced waste and inefficiencies where energy is used. Emerson technologies and expertise provide the industry’s only turnkey energy optimisation programme to help refiners, chemical producers, and other manufacturers significantly reduce energy costs and emissions.

"With industrial manufacturers consuming an estimated 50 per cent of the world’s energy, combined with rising fossil fuel prices and global mandates for reduced emissions, our customers need more than incremental efficiencies in energy management," said Steve Sonnenberg, president of Emerson Process Management. "With our Smart Energy Initiative, Emerson is introducing a fundamentally new platform that can change energy economics globally."

New patent-pending innovation
At the heart of Emerson’s integrated technology platform is its "True Energy" technology, a patent-pending innovation for calculating the actual calorific values of fuel sources, which makes reliable energy production predictable and repeatable.

"Our True Energy Combustion Control platform reinvents the current model of combustion management, which has been around since the 1920s and is still in practice today," said Chip Rennie, director of Industrial Energy for Emerson. "This brings about nothing short of a reinvention of combustion models, which will make the prevalent use of low-cost fuels like biomass achievable and sustainable."

For the first time, Emerson’s proprietary suite of software, combined with field control technologies, enables the powerhouse to interchangeably use the most available and affordable renewable or waste fuels – wood waste, food by-products, animal waste, or manufacturing by-products like petroleum coke or off-gases – to consistently create steam to power their operations. It also delivers 21st century combustion solutions for greater efficiency and reliability when using waste and other renewable fuels, which burn and deliver energy at variable and unpredictable rates.

Helping customers meet global emissions mandates
Modernising industrial powerhouses for greater sustainability not only reduces energy costs but also helps companies reduce emissions and meet global regulatory mandates. The European Renewable Energy Directive 20/20/20 seeks to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 20 per cent and increase the share of renewable fuels in the European Union’s energy mix by 20 per cent by the year 2020. China, the world’s largest energy consumer, aims to reduce carbon emissions by 40 per cent to 45 per cent by 2020 and to use non-fossil fuels for about 15 per cent of its energy. According to the International Energy Outlook 2010 report, renewable energy is expected to grow by 1.8 per cent annually to represent 8 per cent of total energy use in the industrial sector.

"We have seen tremendous growth for certain projects, such as biomass-to-energy conversion, where we have many customers running on renewable fuels 95 per cent of the time," Sonnenberg added. "Given our track record and energy management leadership, we anticipate 25 per cent to 35 per cent growth in industrial energy projects over the next five years."

Recent applications of Emerson’s industrial energy solutions include increased steam production from scrap wood at a commercial power facility, more stable operation of a university’s utility boilers, and more stable and efficient consumption of by-product gases at a steel mill.

"Emerson’s work at our Port Talbot (UK) steel mill is helping us make better use of ‘indigenous’ fuels – such as blast furnace gas and coke oven gas – that are by-products of our manufacturing process," said Andrew Rees, manager of a boiler upgrade project for Tata Steel. "The improved controls are part of a comprehensive energy management project that’s expected to reduce powerhouse energy consumption by 3 per cent to 5 per cent and help Tata Steel achieve its vision of becoming energy self-sufficient."   
(see also "Upgraded boiler controls enable greater use of waste fuels in Welsh steel facility" 24 November 2011)

Team combines expertise and critical technologies
Emerson’s new Industrial Energy Group is headed by Rennie, a 25-plus-year powerhouse operations expert. Emerson technologies that add real-time intelligent capabilities to the energy-generating process are Emerson’s SmartProcess™ Boiler and SmartProcess Energy Management software. These comprehensive solutions are designed to overhaul dated equipment and methodologies used by the majority of industrial powerhouses, as well as provide a new approach to "greenfield sites".

Emerson’s innovative SmartProcess Boiler technology delivers a new and unique real-time combustion control solution to address the inconsistent nature of renewable and waste fuel sources, automating and simplifying management of sudden changes in calorific value or the availability of those fuels.

SmartProcess Energy Management is another sophisticated software application that runs in real-time, closed-loop control to balance steam systems, manage electrical demand swings and upsets, identify opportunities to buy and sell power, improve efficiency, and run an entire industrial utility at the lowest cost automatically.

"Improving energy efficiency at a customer site by just 1 per cent to 2 per cent can translate into hundreds of thousands of euros in savings, and substituting a waste fuel for a purchased fuel can save millions of euros annually," said Rennie. "Opportunities like these are now too big to ignore. We look forward to helping our customers bring their powerhouse facilities up to 21st century performance standards."


Controller Selection Considerations eGuide

One of the leading US
Automation publications
Controller-based applications face a divergence when selecting a controller: Simplicity and ruggedness, or openness and functionality? In math, that’s called indeterminacy, but in automation, the engineer should know what controller feature set is best for the application, no matter what you call the logic device.

Control Engineering have an eGuide available to determine whether you need A PLC, PAC, or IPC for your next control application.  Learn more about the possibility of Programmable Logic Controllers (PLCs) evolving Into Programmable Automation Controllers (PACs), or Industrial PCs (IPCs).  Whatever the name, learn about the best features and software for your control applications.

Over the last few years, this publication has been very active in the industry discussion relating to PACs, PLCs and IPCs.  Follow the discussion and industry how-to in this important eGuide on when and where to select the appropriate controller.

The articles in the eGuide include:
• Balancing PLCs, PACs, IPCs
• Discussion on PLC vs. PAC:  When and Where?
• Speaking in Tongues:  Understanding the IEC 61131-3 Programming Languages
• What is a Programmable Controller
• Case Studies:  Pyromatics Automation System and ITS with International Harvester

The eGuide is free but you will have to register here to get it!

Contract for FEED for control & safety system

Yokogawa has been awarded a contract by CJV, a joint venture comprised of Chiyoda Corporation as JV leader, CB&I, and Saipem S.p.A., to perform the front-end engineering design (FEED) for an integrated control and safety system that is to be provided to Arrow Energy for the Arrow LNG Project. For this project, Yokogawa Engineering Asia has been selected as the main automation contractor (MAC) by Arrow Energy.

Arrow Energy, a 50/50 joint venture between Shell and CNPC (PetroChina), is planning the development of a liquefied natural gas (LNG) facility on Curtis Island, which is directly off the coast from the city of Gladstone in South East Queensland, Australia. The project includes the construction of a liquefaction facility, jetties, and offloading facilities. The LNG plant will receive coal-bed methane (CBM) from the Surat and Bowen basins and will process, treat, and liquefy the gas for export. In phase 1 of this project, two 4 million ton per year LNG trains will be constructed. A decision will be made at some later date whether to proceed with the planned construction of two additional trains of equivalent size.

The FEED work commenced in November 2011. Following completion of this preliminary phase and a decision to go ahead with the project, Yokogawa will proceed to supply its CENTUM VP integrated production control system and the ProSafe-RS safety instrumented system as the MAC. In this role, it will work directly with the project's engineering, procurement, and construction (EPC) contractors.
Prospects are bright in the LNG market because of increasing energy demand and the development of technologies that are making it possible to tap unconventional natural resources such as CBM and shale gas. Encouraged by this new order, Yokogawa will make every possible effort to expand its global LNG business, especially in Australia and countries in Southeast Asia where many LNG projects are underway.

With a Main Automation Contractor, the control systems order is placed directly with a control system supplier in order to improve plant construction efficiency and reduce both costs and the delivery period. The MAC participates in a project from an early stage and works with the project's EPC contractors.

Thursday, January 5, 2012

New websites for international sensor market!

Featuring full product technical information, online ordering and video channel

The Deeter Group have launched three new websites to increase their market presence in the major international instrumentation and process control markets.

The new websites focus on Britain – the USA - and Germany – and provide all the product, application and ordering information customers require.

These new, easy to navigate websites are designed to simplify navigation to product information and feature online shopping. The redesigned sites reflect the company’s new direction, showcasing their innovative vertical level sensors and wireless sensor systems. With all the relevant information at visitors finger tips the new websites allow customers to select and order Deeter products.

“This redesign has a fresh feel which I think will appeal to a wide audience,” adds Deeter CEO, Peter Whiteaker. “The redesign and international reach is about building relationships with a new audience by making the sites interactive while at the same giving our long-term customers the information and service levels they have come to expect from Deeter. When overhauling the sites our designers intended them to be entertaining and simple with a user friendly approach.”

All the sites offer Google Translate, reducing language barriers. Clicking on the Video option from ‘The Company’ tab allows visitors to see the Deeter in action and watch company CEO Peter Whiteaker explain the history and new direction of Deeter Electronics and Engineering.

The Deeter video channel will expand to offer videos of product testing to demonstrate why Deeter products have such enviable reliability and “how to” instructional videos for correct use of Deeter products.

Industrial mobile broadband router for remote system access

Secure connectivity to mobile or remotely located Ethernet and RS-232 devices improves operational efficiency

By providing resilient and secure access to remotely located Ethernet and RS-232 systems and devices it is possible to eliminate the need for time consuming site visits required to take manual readings, diagnose problems or recalibrate instruments. To help support this need Westermo has released a new industrial mobile broadband router that provides secure access to your assets and helps to lower operational costs associated with the cost of travel and time spent away from the main site.

The newly launched MRD-350 is a robust industrial mobile broadband router designed for remote access across a cellular network and uses the Internet to cost effectively inter-connect systems, allowing HMIs, PLCs, and other devices to communicate with each other. The router has an uplink capacity of up to 5.7 Mbit/s and downlink of 14.4 Mbit/s, making it suitable for high data rate transmissions. Typical mobile or static applications include video surveillance, SCADA/DNP3 telemetry systems and remote access to machines and devices. For solar powered applications energy efficiency is vital and the MRD-350 has a special low-power mode to only be fully powered when needed.

The MRD-350 supports a wide variety of wireless standards including GSM, GPRS, 3G UMTS, HSDPA, and HSUPA. The MRD-350 features dual SIM card support, which ensures that site connectivity is not dependent on a single carrier. Should a carrier network failure take place the unit automatically switches to the alternative SIM card. When applied to on board applications (train, truck, buses, off road vehicles, etc.) the routers will automatically use the most efficient network available according to the geographical area.

A rugged enclosure, operating voltage range from 10 VDC to 60 VDC and compact design with all interfaces and LEDs positioned at the front makes the unit extremely well suited for industrial DIN-rail applications in harsh environments. With isolation between the PSU and the Ethernet and serial ports, protection is provided against issues caused by ground loops.

Devices connected to the Internet require counter measures towards cyber threats. The MRD-350 offers protection from malicious eavesdroppers via encrypted communication tunnels - Virtual Private Networks (VPN). The device also features a simple, yet powerful, packet inspection firewall. Using the on-board web interface it is easy to set up a VPN tunnel running between sites even over insecure networks such as the Internet.

To extend the life of legacy equipment there are a number of tools included that will ensure connectivity with PLCs and other RS-232-based devices. A built-in two port 10/100 Ethernet switch and RS-232 port allow a broad range of devices, machines and systems to seamlessly connect over any distance. The RS-232 port provides a simple modem replacement solution with the benefit of not having to reprogram or change any other component.

Industrial USB

The Amphenol USBField range is a pioneer in the field of USB connections for harsh environments.

Amphenol has extended its range by proposing a plastic version USB called USBAP for industrial markets.

Both robust and economical, this new range of products is specially adapted for applications for access points on telecoms equipment, video controls, robotics, and industrial process automationsamong others.

The solution is complete and the range is available in encapsulated rugged USB wires, as well as receptacles integrating an automatic cap (which automatically protects the receptacle when the plug is unmated) and waterproof USB Memory key with a capacity of 2 to 8 GB.

This new series offers optimal protection for use in severe environments. It is IP67 rated (1hr under 1m water). In mated condition, the plug is connected to the receptacle or in USB Memory Key versions. In the unmated mode, when the receptacle is fitted to its self closing cap, the protection is IP54 (dust and water). The temperature range is from - 40°C to + 85°C.

System integrators new members!

The Control System Integrators Association (CSIA) announces that Revere Control Systems, Birmingham (AL USA) recently became recertified as a CSIA Certified member.

In other membership news, the following companies became new associate members:

Control Systems West, Inc., Petaluma, (CA USA).
Cosylab d.d., Ljubljana, (SI)
PCI, LLC, Detroit, (Mich USA).

River Cities Engineering, Davenport, (IO USA), is a new participating member. State Electric Supply Company, Winston Salem, N.C., is a new partner member.

To become a CSIA Certified member, a member company must pass an intensive audit process with stringent performance standards categories in nine categories: general management, financial management, project management, quality management, technical management, human resources management and marketing, business development and sales management.

Certified members are re-audited every three years and recertified if they meet current performance standards. The certification criteria is spelled out in CSIA’s Best Practices and Benchmarks, the accepted roadmap for system integrators committed to delivering the level of quality, performance and long-term support their customers expect.  

Explosion-proof solution for installing lab instrumentation into hazardous field environments

Ideal for analyzers in open-field sites such as refineries and chemical plants

Intertec is making it easy to deploy advanced laboratory-grade instrumentation in the field with the launch of an explosion proof protection option. A new inert gas pressurisation system allows its protective cabinets or enclosures to house laboratory-style equipment that is non explosion protected - such as analyzers and sensors - in IEC-Ex and ATEX Zone 1, 21, 2 or 22 hazardous areas.

Intertec is known for offering an exceptionally broad range of field protection enclosures, which are constructed from high performance grades of GRP (glass reinforced polyester). The new inert gas pressurisation option - InertSyst - extends the types of equipment that plant instrumentation engineers can install in these protective enclosures - providing an unmatched choice of enclosure styles and opening formats, as well as climate protection accessories.

A unique aspect of the new Ex p system is that it is certified for use where a hazardous atmosphere might be created inside the enclosure - due perhaps to a hydrocarbon leak from the analyzer equipment - as well as more conventional situations where a potential hazard is caused by the atmosphere outside the enclosure. The certification also applies to the system as a whole. This means that Intertec can use the principle for virtually any application, without having to seek re-certification from approvals agencies.

According to Martin Hess, CEO of Intertec, "The ability to deploy non Ex approved laboratory equipment in hazardous environments provides considerable flexibility for system installers. They are now able to place the equipment precisely where it is needed. And because Intertec issues the CE certificate of compliance, there is no risk of installation schedules being compromised by lengthy certification procedures."

InertSyst - or inert gas purged system - works by maintaining a small overpressure inside the enclosure, in the order of 0.8 mbar, of an inert gas such as nitrogen or carbon dioxide. Many refineries and chemical facilities incorporate air separation plants to produce a source of nitrogen which is piped around the facility. If this is not available, the enclosure can be supplied from a standalone cylinder.

The introduction of InertSyst extends Intertec's ability to provide explosion-proof enclosure systems, enabling it to help clients achieve site-wide standardisation of field-based equipment and thereby reduce their total cost of ownership through easier procurement, maintenance and spares holding.

Intertec designs and manufactures probably the world's broadest selection of field protection enclosures and cabinets, and the new InertSyst gas purge system is suitable for use with most of these - up to sizes providing some 6000 litres capacity. The technique can accommodate enclosures fitted with intrinsically safe heaters of up to 400 W dissipation, provided that they are designated T3 or T4 and are ATEX approved. Typically this would comprise an Intertec explosion-proof electric heater and smart controller combination. The inert gas is introduced via a solenoid valve, controlled by an application-specific electronics module which monitors internal and external pressure; the minimum and maximum internal pressures are programmable. Intertec offers a choice of digital (on-off) or proportional solenoid valves, to best suit the application.

The nitrogen purging and pressurisation process depends upon the particular application and its environment. For Zone 1 or 2 applications, where an external explosive gas or vapour atmosphere might be present, the enclosure is initially thoroughly purged with nitrogen to remove all oxygen before any protected devices are energised. Zone 21 or 22 applications, where the potential hazard is created by dust in the atmosphere, do not require this initial purging.

Subsequently, provided that the instrumentation is not capable of leaking hazardous gas, the control module simply causes sufficient nitrogen to be injected periodically to compensate for natural leakage, maintaining a slight positive pressure inside the enclosure to prevent ingress of an explosive mixture. However, if the instrumentation is itself capable of compromising the integrity of the enclosure by leaking hydrocarbons, then the system has a continuous flow mode which continuously feeds a higher, but still carefully regulated, quantity of nitrogen through the enclosure to dilute the hazardous gas before dispersing it into the atmosphere.

When fitted with InertSyst, Intertec's enclosures fully comply with the IEC EN 60079-2 standard for equipment protection provided by pressurised enclosures in explosive atmospheres. Intertec's new InertSyst is also available for cabinets and enclosures produced by other manufacturers.

Wireless solar control....

GreenPeak Technologies has announced a wireless monitoring and control system solution for solar panel installations that will allow individual panel parameter tracking and control.

Photovoltaic solar panels are increasing in popularity and users need accurate information of their solar energy installation. Currently, most residential solar panel systems only provide energy information on a monthly basis and do not allow individual panel monitoring.  The Smart Junction Box reference design utilizing GreenPeak wireless chips provides a solution to monitor solar systems in more detail and to control the chain from a central unit or remote device.

This solution allows solar panel builders to comply with new upcoming legal requirements requiring that solar panels can be individually switched off in case of calamities, as high DC voltages from a string of panels on a rooftop can cause danger for emergency services or fire responders.

By adding wireless Smart Junction Boxes on every individual panel, up to the minute status information on electricity generation of each panel can be provided and allows the operator to switch off individual panels or panel substrings for optimized overall solar panel system performance. Performance metrics enable system owners and service provider to actually monitor the condition of the solar panels in order to properly schedule maintenance and cleaning.

The data collected from each individual panel can also be shown in a configurable GUI software application. When a problem in the solar panel system occurs, performance gradually declines or suddenly drops, remote diagnosis and controlling via a mobile App on smart phone can be one of the use cases.

GreenPeak provides communication controller chips and a complete solar panel control reference design to be integrated in the next generation solar panel monitoring and controlling systems.

Cees Links
, Founder and CEO of GreenPeak Technologies states: “Solar power is emerging as the number one competitive renewable energy resource. Improvement in the efficiency of solar systems and the need for a more developed understanding of solar panel performance, tracking and maintenance becomes increasingly important because of the rapid deployment of solar technologies in the marketplace. GreenPeak solutions for wireless monitoring, measuring and controlling individual panels, will enable the solar industry to create more efficient and more cost effective solar systems.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Aquisition to extend portfolio into wireless!

Linear Technology Corporation has acquired Dust Networks.

The acquisition of Dust Networks will enable Linear to offer a complete high performance wireless sensor networking solution. Dust Networks’ low power radio and software technology complements Linear’s strengths in industrial instrumentation, power management and energy harvesting technology.

Kris Pister concieved "Smart Dust"
Dust Networks’ proven, low power wireless sensor network technology extends Linear’s product portfolio into key growth areas in industrial process control, data acquisition and energy harvesting. Dust Networks’ ultralow power wireless systems complements Linear’s analog and digital sensor interface ICs, and energy harvesting power management products in applications where measurement of physical parameters has traditionally been impractical or impossible.

Erik Soule, Vice President of Signal Conditioning and High Frequency products for Linear Technology, stated, “Dust Networks offers the lowest power radio technology and most complete networking software for building industrial-grade wireless sensor networks. Combined with Linear’s precision low-power sensor interface products and battery-free energy harvesting technology, we can now offer the industry’s highest performance remote monitoring solutions.”

With the growing importance of machine-to-machine communications to enable remote data acquisition, low power wireless sensing is an emerging solution for many end-markets, including industrial process control, building automation and data center energy management.

Joy Weiss, President of Dust Networks, stated, “Dust Networks and Linear are an excellent fit. We already have very complementary products and customers, and with Linear’s global sales reach we can be at the forefront, enabling sensor networks to go wireless on an even broader scale.”

“Smart Dust” was first conceived by Dr. Kris Pister, founder and chief technologist of Dust Networks, as a simple way to deploy intelligent wireless sensors. Dust Networks pioneered SmartMesh® networks that comprise a self-forming mesh of nodes, or “motes,” which collect and relay data, and a network manager that monitors and manages network performance and sends data to the host application. This technology is now the basis for a number of seminal networking standards. The hallmark of Dust Networks’ technology is that it combines low power, standards-based radio technology, time diversity, frequency diversity, and physical diversity—to assure reliability, scalability, wire-free power source flexibility, and ease-of-use. All motes in a SmartMesh network—even the routing nodes—are designed to run on batteries for years, allowing the ultimate flexibility in placing sensors exactly where they need to go with low cost “peel and stick” installations.

Dust Networks’ customers range from the world’s largest industrial process automation and control providers such as GE and Emerson, to innovative, green companies such as Vigilent and Streetline Networks. Dust Networks’ technology can be found in a variety of monitoring and control solutions, including data center energy management, renewable energy, remote monitoring, and transportation.

Terms of the transaction were not disclosed. Although there will be some transaction related costs, Dust’s ongoing results are not expected to be material in the short term to Linear’s financial statements.

Protection from "artists!"

Rittal’s nano-coating option for their outdoor enclosure range can be applied to the external finish of an enclosure to help reduce the effects of graffiti and make the clean-up process quicker, easier and less costly.  This is in addition to utilising the properties of nano-technology, as a cold spray pre-treatment prior to paint improves the resistance to corrosion for the cabinets. 

Derived from extensive research into the behaviour of atomic and molecular particles, the nano-coating has the same characteristics as the well known Lotus effect, where surfaces are not wetted when in direct contact with a liquid, and dust particles do not adhere. The nano-technology coating minimises the surface friction and provides a structure which resists adhesion once set.  However, it has excellent adhesion to the underlying surface.  It is also transparent and inert with good mechanical and chemical resistance.

In addition, Rittal’s nano-coating has long lasting characteristics for repelling water and organic liquids, which limit the effect of applied graffiti and enable easier removal with high pressure cleaning, and replace the  less environmentally friendly chemicals.  Long term cost benefits are clear due to improved resistance and cheaper removal of unwanted graffiti, as well as improved resistance to corrosion.

Indoor temperature and humidity.

A new thermocouple data logger has been launched by Gemini Data Loggers, manufacturers of the Tinytag range. Tinytags have an established reputation for accuracy and reliability across many industries; the new thermocouple logger provides monitoring for a broad spectrum of temperature ranges and is highly versatile, enhancing the choice of solutions available and meeting the specific demands of many applications and industries.

The new Tinytag Ultra 2 Thermocouple data logger offers all the recognised benefits of thermocouple temperature monitoring – fast response, versatility, cost-effectiveness and ease of use. The unit supports the most popular thermocouples types – K, J, T and N –providing monitoring for temperature ranges from -270°C to 1370°C, depending on the type being used. This makes it suitable for a wide range of applications, including the accurate monitoring standards demanded by the food processing industry, to the extremes of temperature experienced in hot industrial processes such as smelting, right through to conditions experienced in freezers. Thermocouples are available either as bare wire, offering lower cost and faster response times, or built into probes designed for specific uses depending on their type of construction or insulation material used. The logger also has a built-in temperature channel allowing the particular process and the ambient air temperature to be monitored simultaneously.

Furthermore, the new Tinytag thermocouple logger offers additional versatility by incorporating a connection that supports both standard and miniature thermocouple plugs. The unit features burn out response – the option to configure the logger to drive readings either low or high in the event of thermocouple failure, making it obvious to the user that a problem has occurred. The compact, stand-alone logger has a battery that lasts for over a year, and like all Tinytag products it is compatible with the easy to use Tinytag Explorer software. Data is downloaded to a PC via a USB connection where the software clearly presents the data as graphs and tables.

These products are marketed in Ireland by Manotherm.

Single source supplier for the provision of instrumentation products

Shell's Enterprise Framework Agreement with Parker Hannifin covers the supply of instrument tubing fittings, manifolds, valves, process-to-instrument valves and related products

Parker Hannifin Corporation has signed an Enterprise Framework Agreement (EFA) with Shell as a single source supplier for the provision of instrumentation valves, manifolds, process-to-instrument valves, fittings, tubing, protective enclosures and related products. Under the terms of Shell's EFA - which runs for an initial period of five years - Parker's Instrumentation Group will supply Shell and its affiliates worldwide with a broad range of process instrumentation products.

"We are delighted to win this contract with such a major player in the oil and gas business, and are confident that our manufacturing resources on three continents and our global Parker Sales Company support network will meet the enormous challenges of this supply agreement", says Ian Huggins, General Manager of Parker Hannifin's Instrumentation Products Division in Europe. "We are also excited with the prospect of closer engineering cooperation, as this will give us a front row view of emerging technical challenges in critical application areas."

"We see this agreement marking the start of a sustained period of progress in instrumentation technology", adds Sheldon Banks, EMEA Sales and Marketing Manager of Parker Hannifin Instrumentation Products Division in Europe. "We believe that such a cooperative relationship between major players in their respective spheres will help to establish many new standards for performance, safety and cost reduction."

Over the last decade, Parker has invested heavily in innovation, and has made many significant advances in areas including safety, speed of installation and maintenance, and lowering emissions. In particular, Parker's new products can dramatically reduce the number of potential leak paths in a fluid flow system, and improve ergonomics for instrumentation and maintenance engineers. Its core values of 'faster, smarter, cleaner, safer' capture the company's goal of leadership in the process instrumentation market.

Also important is Parker's long experience in designing and manufacturing instrumentation using specialized alloys that optimize protection against corrosion - a major problem for many current oil and gas projects.

The Instrumentation Group is dedicated to being the global leader in the design, manufacture and distribution of high quality, critical flow and ultra-high purity components for the petrochemical, chemical processing, oil and gas, power generation, water analysis, biopharmaceutical, semiconductor, and analytical equipment industries.

Fun zapping enabled!

A new GP570 chip that will allow the development of low cost motion-enabled remote controls has been launched by Green Peak. It addresses the growing demand for smarter and intuitive navigation of interactive entertainment services offered by operators.

Operators and consumer electronics manufacturers adopt motion sensing for their remote controls to enhance the consumer’s user experience with intuitive browsing and navigation extending into new interactive entertainment services. GreenPeak’s GP570, highly integrated single SoC solution, enables building cost-effective motion-enabled remote controls, which will allow mass market adoption of the new generation remote controls to become a reality.

The highly integrated GP570 is GreenPeak’s single chip RF4CE remote control SoC solution with integrated support of motion sense algorithms based on combined accelerometer and gyroscope input for advanced gesture recognition and smooth and accurate movement control.

GreenPeak offers the GP570 with reference designs that allow a seamless integration with minimal efforts and a short time to market. The GP570 is part of the proven GreenPeak remote control RF4CE product line.

Cees Links, Founder and CEO of GreenPeak Technologies explains: “Motion-enabled remote controls fit perfectly with the next generation television content and services. Our silicon is the most robust and cost effective choice for operators that offer the next generation TV and Set-top Box services that drive competitive advantage and subscriber retention. Motion control will transform zapping into a fun, smooth and intuitive pointing experience.”

“Next generation remote controls will help MSO’s and cable providers excite existing subscribers and attract new ones,” says Rob Enderle, Principle Analyst with Enderle Group. “Adding motion sensing to RF4CE remote control features like interactivity, whole house coverage, and outstanding battery life, will help bring the cable industry into the age defined by products like the Xbox Kinect and Wii.”

Industry forum!

Transforming Industry through New Processes and Technologies

This is the theme for ARC’s Sixteenth Annual World Industry Forum (February 6-9, 2012) in Orlando (FL US) just one month away (see our report on Last Years Forum!)

This annual forum, an industry-leading networking and learning event, attracts executive attendees from both the automation supplier and end user communities.  Forum programs cover a wide range of timely manufacturing and industrial automation and IT-related issues, including:

• Analytics for Industry
• Asset Information and Lifecycle Management
• Asset Performance Management
• Cloud Computing
• Collaboration and Social Media Solutions
• Innovations in Virtual Production
• Operational Excellence for Power Generation
• Security Solutions for Plants and Infrastructure
• Supply Chain Integrity and Brand Protection
• Sustainable Operational Excellence Solutions
• Enterprise Mobility

The automation technologies represented and discussed include sensors, PLCs, and DCS control systems.  Software technologies include HMI/SCADA, historian, simulation, MES, ERP, and asset management.  The ARC forum addresses both process and discrete marketplaces.
Forum participants typically include senior industry executives plus directors and managers from across the global engineering, IT, operations, maintenance, and supply chain/logistics communities; plus representatives from government, academia, and the media.

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Mini-transmitter for temperature!

Omega's TX-M12 series of temperature transmitters are an innovative new range offering improved performance over conventional in-head devices. Housed in a rugged stainless steel enclosure, they provide fast, secure and watertight connections for both the sensor and the instrumentation. At a fraction of the size of standard head-mounted transmitters measuring 38mm diameter with a height of 20mm and weighing just 100 grams, they are ideally suited to a broad range of applications.

They can accept a variety of resistance sensors, including Pt100, Pt500 and Pt1000, Ni100, Ni1000 and variable resistance up to 10,000 ohms. The integral M12 connectors maintain IP67 protection, whilst allowing for a quick and simple change of sensor. Two outputs are available with either 4-20mA or 0-10Vdc with an accuracy of ± 0.2 °C + 0.05% of reading. Default scaling for the output is 0 to 100°C and other ranges can be specified at the time of purchase. It is also possible for the user to scale the transmitter in the field by programming the device with the optional USB module that is supplied with free software.